The school hallway seemed bigger now that each inch of it was not covered with students. Anne wondered if it might echo. Everything seemed desolate with no kids around. The water cooler was just a water cooler, not the giggly landmark where she'd met her best friend Una. There was always a line for water during breaks and to finish quickly Anne had turned on the tap to the max, a fountain had struck her in the jaw and the whole line had started laughing, all except Una, who had handed her a handkerchief.
That's how they met, and they just started hanging out together. Their two seats at the edge of the tree in the school garden, the same two cycle stands at the end of the row, the chairs in the middle of the classroom near the window. They had been inseparable, until now.
Anne couldn't believe that she had to leave. She wouldn't go for ice lollies with Una after school anymore, couldn't copy her homework, couldn't have endless pajama parties. She missed that smile already.
The school started to show signs of life as the janitor moved about the halls, Anne waited for Una. She didn't know what she would say to her to her or how she'll say anything to explain the situation. Maybe her mom had already called Una's mom, maybe she already knew.
The barrage of students dominated the halls and excitable chatter filled the building. Anne still couldn't see Una. Why wasn't she there?
Anne went to her house and saw her. Dressed in black, crying her eyes out. Anne wanted to call out to her - I never thought of death, but I wanted to say good-bye and give you a handkerchief this time.