کتاب های خیلی ساده

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فصل 04

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  • زمان مطالعه 6 دقیقه
  • سطح خیلی سخت

دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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CHAPTER FOUR

The Long Wait

The next morning I woke up early. When I went into the kitchen Liz was cooking breakfast. Dad was reading the newspaper. Normally, he says ‘good morning’ and gives me a kiss on the cheek. Today, he didn’t even look at me when I sat down at the table.

‘I heard you singing last night,’ says Liz. She puts a plate of bacon and eggs in front of me and smiles.

‘Humph!’ says Dad, closing his paper and getting up from the table.

Liz watches him leave the room and then sits down next to me. ‘Well…?’ she asks, starting to eat her bacon sandwich, ‘Did you finish it?’

‘Finish what?’ I ask.

‘The tape of course! For the competition!’ she smiles. ‘Give it to me and I’ll post it when I go to the supermarket.’

Just then Dad comes back into the kitchen. Liz stops talking and we both look up at the same time. For a moment I worry that he heard everything. Liz looks worried too. But then he picks up his glasses and says, ‘Hurry up and eat your breakfast, Ellie. The windows need cleaning and then I want you to clean the shelves.’

‘No problem, Dad,’ I say with a smile.

‘Humph!’ he says again as he leaves the room.

‘Thanks, Liz,’ I whisper, giving her a hug when Dad has gone. ‘And I’m really sorry about breaking the photo.’

‘Don’t worry about it. Just remember me when you’re rich and famous. You’re going to win, Ellie. I know you are!’

I wanted to believe it too. It seemed impossible. But all day and for days afterwards I couldn’t think of anything else. Just thinking about meeting Murphy made my heart beat fast and my cheeks go red! It also made Dad’s bad temper easier to live with too.

Because I wasn’t allowed out, the only time I saw Cassie and Skye was at school. They were really sorry that I couldn’t go to Glastonbury. Cassie had a big argument with her Dad and Skye said she didn’t want to go to the festival without me, but I said they had to go.

Then the first day of the exams arrived and for a week I didn’t have time to think about the competition. Biology was still difficult, but at least it seemed like I was going to pass.

But then the exams were over and my thoughts returned to the competition.

The magazine said that they were going to contact the winner by 22 June. The night of 21 June I couldn’t sleep. Will they send a letter to the winner? Or will they telephone? Why was I thinking about it anyway? It was impossible that I, plain Ellie Stevenson, was going to win. But that didn’t stop the butterflies in my stomach as I watched the sun rise the next morning.

The postman usually delivers our post at about 10 o’clock. He stops for a cup of coffee with Liz, but it was already 10.30. Just when I started to imagine the worst, I saw him approaching on his bicycle. But he didn’t stop. He always stops! But today he drove by with only a wave and a friendly smile. When he stopped next door, I went outside.

‘Hello, Ellie,’ he says. ‘Are you OK? You look worried. Exam results don’t arrive until August!’

‘I know… I’m fine… it’s just… is there any post for us this morning? We always get something. Bills usually, Dad says, but… anyway…’ I stop for breath and try to smile.

‘Sorry…’ he shakes his head. ‘Nothing for number thirty-two today! Are you waiting for something important?’

‘Can you check, please,’ I insist. But his bag is almost empty and I can see there is nothing there for me.

Maybe they will phone instead. Yes! That’s it! While I’m out here, the phone is ringing and Dad can’t answer it because he is busy. I run back into the shop. But there are no customers. The shop is empty and the phone isn’t ringing. Dad is doing a crossword and Liz is painting her nails.

‘Has anyone phoned, Dad?’ I ask, out of breath.

‘No,’ he says.

I look at the clock. 10.55. There’s still time.

I wait and wait. Lunchtime passes but still there’s no news. I watch the clock and the minutes go by so slowly, but still the telephone doesn’t ring.

And then it is 5 o’clock and I know that my dream is over. I didn’t win. I feel stupid for believing, even for a second, that I could win.

‘Ellie! Ellie!’ Dad’s voice makes me look up.

‘Mmm?’

‘What is wrong with you today? All you’ve done is look at the clock and be miserable. Peter isn’t feeling very well. I need you to deliver the evening newspapers.’

I don’t like delivering newspapers, but I pick up the bag and walk out of the door.

My dream is over, broken like the picture of Dad’s wedding. I want to be alone.

When I get back it is late. I wanted to talk to Liz but she has already left for her Italian class. I can’t talk to Dad. He didn’t even know about the competition. And anyway, he’s asleep in front of the television, the unfinished crossword on his knee.

I suddenly feel very tired so I go upstairs to bed. I don’t go into the kitchen, so I don’t see the note on the door of the fridge.

There’s a folded piece of paper on the bed, but I don’t even open it. I am so tired and unhappy that I throw it angrily into a corner and get into bed. I go to sleep crying.

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