فصل 04

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فصل 04

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CHAPTER FOUR

The new Patience

Patience and Sally were walking away from the Hedare building.

‘I don’t know how to describe it,’ Patience said. ‘I was saying those things to Hedare, but I wasn’t saying them. Another person was saying them. Do you understand?’

‘No, I don’t,’ replied Sally. ‘But it’s great that somebody said them!’

‘I wanted to hurt him. What’s happening to me, Sal?’ asked Patience.

As they walked past two noisy dogs, Sally jumped. But Patience turned round and hissed loudly at the dogs.

‘What was that noise?’ asked Sally.

‘What noise?’ Patience replied.

They were walking past a jewellery shop. Patience looked in the window and saw a beautiful necklace with diamond claws. ‘Oh, how pretty!’ she said.

‘Oh! I don’t feel well,’ said Sally, and she fell to the ground.

Patience sat next to Sally’s bed in the hospital.

‘Do they know what’s wrong with you, Sal?’ she asked. ‘No, but they’re doing lots of tests,’ said Sally. ‘And there’s some good news: my doctor is really attractive. What about your handsome policeman?’

‘Oh, I don’t think I’m going to see him again. I’m terrible with boyfriends,’ said Patience.

‘Then stop being terrible,’ said Sally. ‘Go and see him. And go NOW. My good-looking doctor’s coming.’

Tom Lone was talking to a group of ten-year-old children. He was teaching them about right and wrong, and telling them about his job as a policeman.

‘It’s wrong to take something if you don’t pay for it,’ he said. ‘If you steal something, you’re a bad person.’

‘Can I see your gun?’ asked one of the kids.

‘Can I touch it?’ asked another.

‘Are there bullets in it?’ asked a third.

Lone laughed and looked up. Patience was standing at the back of the room with two paper coffee cups in her hand. His heart jumped.

‘Let’s go and play basketball,’ he said. The kids shouted ‘Great!’ and ran out of the room.

Patience walked up to Lone. ‘Hi,’ she said. ‘I called your police station. They said you’d be here. Oh, and you never got your coffee. Here it is.’ She gave him a cup. She had written the word ‘Sorry’ on it.

‘Thanks,’ he said, laughing.

‘I’m sorry I’ve been so strange. I’ve had a really bad day,’ she said. She thought about her day. She’d fallen off a cupboard, she’d lost her job and she’d hissed at two dogs. At least most days weren’t as bad as this!

‘Well, my day has just got better,’ said Lone. ‘I’m glad that you came.’

They went outside. One of the kids threw a ball towards them and Patience caught it. She threw it back.

‘Why don’t you two play against each other?’ someone said.

‘Yeah!’ shouted the rest of the kids. ‘Play against each other!’

Patience and Lone stood opposite each other. Patience got the ball first. Then Lone managed to steal it from her. He tried to get a goal but missed. As soon as the ball was free, Patience quickly took it. But when she tried to get a goal, Lone stood tall in front of her. She jumped up high and hit him with her knee. He fell over and she fell on top of him. They couldn’t stop laughing.

At that moment one of the children shouted, ‘Can we have our ball back, please?’

Thump, thump, thump, thump, thump.

It was the middle of the night and loud music was playing again. Patience’s neighbour in the flat opposite was having another all-night party.

‘Not again,’ Patience thought as she got out of bed. ‘I’ve had enough.’

She walked over to the window and shouted, ‘Please turn the noise down over there!’

A moment later, her neighbour opened his window. ‘Get a life!’ he shouted back. Then he turned the music up much louder.

Patience was really angry. She looked down at the ground below and saw her neighbour’s motorbike. She hissed. Then she smiled. ‘I’m going to be a bad person,’ she thought. ‘And you’ll have to take the bus.’

On top of the cupboard was a big box. Patience got the box, put it on her bed and opened it. Inside were the black leather clothes that Sally and Lance had given her for her birthday: tight trousers, boots and a jacket. She put them on.

Then she went into the bathroom. First she cut her hair and coloured it red. Then she drew around her eyes in black pencil. Finally she painted her lips bright red. Perfect.

She went back to the window and jumped out onto the ground below. The motorbike was shining in the moonlight. Patience got onto the seat and rode off into the night.

‘It’s time to go jewellery shopping,’ she purred.

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