A few days later Beatrice sat in a cafe after school with Emily. They were meant to be putting the finishing touches on their chemistry assignment but neither girl was focused on her schoolwork as they waited for their coffees to be served. Beatrice could feel Emily looking at her thoughtfully. She pretended to be thinking about the assignment but her thoughts were on that haunting tune.
‘Who is—’ They both began at the same time and stopped and laughed.
‘You go,’ Beatrice said.
Emily took a deep breath.
‘No, you go first.’
‘I was thinking about Anar and why she doesn’t like you.’
Emily’s face dropped.
‘I think she knows you’re afraid of her.’
‘I’m not afraid of her. She’s just mean.’
Emily didn’t want to argue about it.
Beatrice let it drop and went back to reading the textbook.
The two girls sat in silence for a few minutes as the waitress placed their cups on the table.
‘Will that be all,’ she drawled.
‘No thanks, we’re good,’ Beatrice replied. She dipped a spoon in the sugar bowl and began stirring her coffee.
‘So do you really not remember anything from before?’ Emily suddenly blurted out.
‘Nothing.’ Beatrice’s voice was flat.
Emily saw the look on Beatrice’s face. She knew Beatrice didn’t like talking about it and wanted to change the subject. She was never comfortable talking about herself.
‘I’m sorry, Beatrice. It’s just—well, I looked up a newspaper article about the accident. I thought it might prompt your memory. Maybe you need help.’
‘Gramma says I’m fine, it’s just the trauma. But then I have these—’ She was about to say dreams but she didn’t know if she was ready to share that with Emily. Beatrice was even wondering if she should have told Emily about her memory loss.
‘It’s just that, you know, the article doesn’t say anything about you.’ Emily pushed a newspaper clipping across the table.
The notorious stretch of road across the Pennines has taken another two lives. A vehicle driving east toward the Pennine Pass left an icy stretch of road at approximately 2:00 to 3:00 am Sunday night. The overturned vehicle was discovered but both the driver and passenger were pronounced dead by the time paramedics arrived. Police have withheld the names of the victims until relatives can be advised.
Beatrice finished reading and put the newspaper clipping down.
‘So? Maybe it was the wrong accident.’
‘But look at the date, Beatrice. It’s the same one you said your accident was.’
‘Maybe it’s just coincidence.’ She shrugged. Beatrice didn’t want to think about it. ‘Are you saying Gramma lied to me?’
‘Have you talked to her?’
‘Of course I have. She says I’m not ready.’ Beatrice twisted the coffee cup in her hand. Emily placed her hand on Beatrice’s forearm.
‘I think you should get professional help. It’s not normal to lose your memory. I’ve been researching about that too.’
Emily reached across the table and squeezed Beatrice’s hand.
‘I’m sorry, Bea. I didn’t mean to make you cry.’