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“Keep this a secret,” Jessica whispered, “and the money is yours, Raelyn.” After saying that, she looked me in the eye with a stare that was intense. It looked like it was saying, “Do not betray my trust.” Then, she gathered her books from her locker and stalked off.

The smell of acrid smoke wafted into my nose and it jolted me awake. I stifled a yawn as I arose from my deep sleep slumber in a state of stupefaction. Just what is the time? Crawling out of bed, I opened the bedroom door, only for the horrific realisation to hit me like a twenty-pound sledgehammer.

The piercing cry of the school bell reverberated through the corridors, signaling the end of another tiring school day. Once their teacher had dismissed the class, Alex and his classmates streamed out of their classroom.

As I sat on the couch, my heart was filled with guilt. I recalled how terrible my mistake was, regretting my every move.

The clock struck noon and I grew more irritated. I had been searching for my school notebook that I needed for my assignments for the past two hours, but my efforts were in vain. As I reached the back of my desk drawer in frustration, I pulled out a slightly tattered dusty book that contained the photographs that I had taken since I was young. As I was flipping the pages of the book I saw a picture that caught my attention – it was a photograph of myself with an old friend, Joe, whose advice for me to eat healthily had changed my life for the better.

“Let’s go home!” John exclaimed as he waved at Tom. Grabbing their schoolbags, the brothers rushed out of the school together. Tom, the elder one, was thoughtful and mature. He was also a tall, lean and athletic boy. John was the polar opposite; he was a short, scrawny and bespectacled child. Although slightly immature, he was a sympathetic child. Nevertheless, they were like two peas in a pod. They were finally dismissed after a tiring day at school and the two could not wait to get home.

“Remember, you are grounded! No skateboarding or leaving the house no matter what!” Dio, the school bully, groaned upon hearing his parents repeat his punishment. He was so disobedient and mischievous that he had been suspended and forced to stay home while his parents went to work. Dio rifled through the pages of his book mindlessly. He would usually ride on his skateboard when he was free but his parents had kept it concealed from him.

“Ding dong!” My doorbell rang. A deliveryman at the door announced that he had a package for Mr Tang. I thought it was a new MacBook and my heart raced as I opened the safety cover and saw the laptop inside the box. My father told me that he had bought a new MacBook a few days ago and said it would be arriving shortly. My father was not at home, and he was at his office. I was not allowed to use the laptop, but I could hold it, so I decided to remove it from its box.

Skateboard. Whenever I hear that word, my stomach begins to churn. I knew that part of the reason I had injured myself was because I did not listen to my mother. If I had only worn my safety gear, I would not have been injured. I might even still be riding on a skateboard right now. That incident I sorely regret happened three years ago.

Regret.             Clicking rapidly on my phone, I invited my best friends over for a late-night party that day at 10.30pm. It was 10pm at night. After three tiring and dreadful weeks of mid-year examinations, I decided that I would host a party to celebrate the end of the examinations.