So many positive turns had approached I don't really know where to start. Mr. Gorwood was gone, I had a wonderful adventure and best of all, made wonderful friends. But now it was about to start in misery again. I had finally finished my run of playing Benvolio in Romeo and Juliet in college. I amongst Michael Dawnrah, Rosie Rell and Elliott Edderdeen had been asked to fill in for the show due to lack of boys. The director had hired me for Benvolio, which I was happy with as I see him as me, being a guy to stop fighting and make peace, Michael was hired as Mercutio which was definitely his role as he was a popular prankster towards his abusive uncle and a very comedic person, Elliott Edderdeen was hired for Romeo which truthfully disheartened me because although he was handsome and tall, he was not the sweet, sensitive gentle young man Romeo was which made me feel sorry for the beautiful Rosie Rell who was hired for Juliet - last minute!

The original actress dropped out calling Shakespeare the typical misery writer and stormed out. Rosie just so happened to volunteer as she knew the whole script by heart having watched the Franco Zeffirelli film eight thousand times along with some other adaptations. Mind you, her skin was beautiful and pale and her hair was jet black so it was no surprise on how the previous spectators commented on her looking exactly like Olivia Hussey, the actress from the film.

I watched her in the wing as she was kneeling over the body of her "love".

"What's here cupped close in my true love's hand?" I watched her recite. "Poison I see hath been his timeless end! O'churl! Drunk all and left no friendly drop to help me after! I will kiss thy lips; hap'ply some poison may doth hang on them to make me die with a restorative."

I had to cover my eyes for this for I hated having to watch her do that, especially since I knew deep down she was mine.

"Thy lips are warm!" she sobbed.

It was amazing to me how she could bear the idea of sobbing over someone she equally hated.

"Yea, noise? Then I'll be brief."

She picked up the dagger and pointed it at herself, her role about to end forever.

"O'happy dagger! This is thy sheath."

She plunged it into her chest and groaned. "There rust and let me die."

And her role of Juliet was over forever. I could literally her some sobbing in the audience. Of course should make them sob - she was the goddess fo Shakespeare.

A glooming peace this morning with it brings. The sun, for sorrow, will not show its head. Go hence to have more talk of this sad things. Some shall be pardoned and some punished; for never was a story of more woe, than this of Juliet and her Romeo, said the voiceover for the last time forever.

"Well done, guys!" I said to everyone in the boy's dressing room.

We all gathered together in a group selfie.

"You were brilliant, mate," said Michael Dawnrah, my best friend as we knuckle-nudged.

"You were great too," I said. "You were picked to be Mercutio for a reason."

"Nah, I don't know if I was that great."

"Oh but you were," I assured him as I did an impression on his death. "A plague on both your houses!"

"They have made worm's meat of you!" he continued playfully.

"What?" I began when he squirted water on my front making me yelp.

Everyone burst out laughing including me.

"Not bad, guys," said Elliott Edderdeen proudly. "There was a big mistake with Leo and his talk with me about Rosaline and he said 'What sadness in hours legends Romeo's hours.'"

"My mind fogged," I said. "You begged to omit half the What Light Through Yonder Window Breaks monologue and I know it all. Heck you were even itching though most of the second act."

"My tights were itching! One of you put itching powder in my tights!"

He glared at me, Tybalt, Friar Laurence, Balthazar and the Prince. Sampson and Gregory on the other hand offered their center fingers at him.

You're better off with the thumb bite rather than that."

"Those two gestures are actually the same thing, tallow face," said Gregory.

"And your excuse is stealing Lord Capulet's lines?"

"I think we were all equally great," I said in my defence trying to keep the fight down so the Montague's and Capulet's wouldn't start another war, since it had already taken the lives of their two children.

"Indeed, Barning," said Elliott, "but I've watched many West End shows and learned so many tips. You should learn that way you can improve your acting."

I could not believe what I was hearing I simply could not! I had been acting since I was eleven and landed many big roles like Charlie Bucket from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Oliver Twist in Oliver!, Ralph in Lord of the Flies, Friederich in The Sound of Music and Ratty in The Wind in the Willows! I never had a big career as Elliott Edderdeen did due to the fact that I put drama down for a while to catch up on sports while he on the other hand, put his big head on the stage making sag under it's weight. I then decided to go back to it and I enrolled along the same time as Rosie who had just finished her dancing course. She earned high grades with her talent. One of her ambitions she told me was to play Odette in ballet Swan Lake. High chances she had for it too for she played the lead three times in their Christmas dance shows much to the envy of the other prima Donnas; Clara in The Nutcracker, Tinkerbell in Neverland and the Queen of Hearts in Wonderland - the story that made he who she was today I might add. When she was small, she began her career playing the title role in a grand production of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and her performance of the popular character brought so much fame, many saying that it must be the sort of Alice that Lewis Carroll himself pictured while creating her from the real Alice Liddell. After this, she moved onto musical theatre where her reputation grew, earning leads and she had recently been cast as Belle for Beauty and the Beast which was to be performed this Christmas. But seeing her talent, our director for regular acting wanted her to help out when she could and only said yes for her love of acting.

"You were all wonderful." My thoughts in her were interrupted when the real figure appeared by the doorway. "Especially you, Leo," she added.

"Err, thanks, Rose," I said rather shyly.

"But I was loved mostly," said Elliott proudly. "I'm sure you and me were the best, Rosie," he added, putting and arm on her shoulder.

"Um, everyone has their own unique talent of acting," said Rosie.

"But with us being the star-crossed lovers," he said. "We are sure to be wed one of these days if we keep performing with each other. We'll perform on the West End happily together."

"I suppose we will," replied Rosie, but in very unconvincing tone.

Half of the guys had already left to enjoy their summer holiday until it was only me, Michael, Rosie and her closest friend Summer Sunn. She was a slim, African girl with hair as black as Rosie's. She also happened to play the Nurse.

"So another summer ahead," said Michael.

"What's your aim?" I asked him. "I shouldn't really have to ask that, should I?"

"Nope," said Michael leaning against the wall. "Uncle Ridd is going to suffer again."

His uncle was a very abusive man who taught PE at my comprehensive school, but his nephew was full of pranks to humiliate him. To the point that he constantly chases him and that was how Michael got his YouTube nickname SonicDawnrah as to how fast he was. I'm glad he did so as his uncle insulted my home which I could never forgive him for, saying it was known for murders. Meeting Michael was one of the best moments of my life. It started in our primary days. We were in separate schools but his school collaborated with mine to put on a production of Oliver! the popular Lionel Bart musical. I was cast as Oliver and that same I landed that, i was taken to meet this tall, brown-haired boy and my teacher "Leo, I would like you to meet Michael Dawnrah who will be playing the Artful Dodger."

We went to each other and shook hands introducing each other:

"Michael Dawnrah."

"Leo Barning."

To this day I always remembered that event. I pictured we would be doing this summer, watching movies in the Vue, making movie projects, cricket, we were literally the sort of brothers you never see anymore - except Hazel and Fiver, two special friends I met last year. But more to them later.

"Come on, Summer!" called her younger brother Sky. "I wanna go home. PS4."

"Goodness me, Sky!" reacted Summer. "There's more to life than PS4 when you could be on the stage doing something productive."

"Just hurry up," he whined.

"He's adorable," responded Michael.

"Oh shut up," laughed Summer.

"Well, I'll see you in the summer, Summer" said Rosie as she kissed her cheek.

"I'm in a few night concerts, babe," replied Summer kissing her cheek back while chuckling at Rosie's joke. "I'm gigging at Spoons this weekend if you and Cynthia want to come."

"Yes!" squeaked a voice making Sky yell. It was Cynthia Rell, Rosie's little sister. She ran up to her sister and hugged her.

"Hello, sweetheart," greeted Rosie as she kissed her head. "Sorry I'm late but I had to help tidy the dressing rooms."

"Can we go to watch Summer sing in the weekend?"

"Of course. Are you up for it, boys?" asked Rosie.

"Yeah why not. I'll just replace Uncle Ridd's ID with a fake one before coming."

"Identified Idiocy," I remarked. "Why don't you title that?"

"Neat!" responded Michael clicking his thumbs shooting his pointed fingers at me to which I did the same.

"Summer!" badgered Sky shaking the door in his frustraion.

"We know it's summer, Sky," I replied. "Hence the boiling weather."

"I can stop to speak to friend you know," said Summer, infuriated by her brother's behaviour. "See you lot Saturday."

And she left in her own pace despite her brother's nagging.

We giggled at the sight when my phone vibrated waring me of a message; it was from my mother:

Hello, sweetheart. I hope the finals matinee performance went well. A few of my friends from work came today and they said you were amazing - and that you were right about the fall with the casting choice for Romeo. But please tell Rosie that they thought she was a wonderful Juliet and they wet themselves at Michael. I'm sorry to start your summer off like this but on Saturday me and Daddy have to go to London to reunite with a long-lost friend. No one is available to look after you and Jason expect Aunt Madeline. I know you and her don't get on well but she is the only option. It is only for the weekend sweetheart and I promise me and Daddy will make it up to you somehow - something expensive. Just keep out of Jason's way and don't try Aunt Madeline's patience and no harm will come to you. She's never done anything evil but she can make you do house chores for many good hours. You nearly had your own summer ruined last year and we want to keep it a positive one this year don't we. Again I know this is bang out of order for you but we have a very strong, courageous son who will pull through anything. Maintain that reputation to keep yourself strong for this weekend. I will see you when you get home. I'll cook you steak, pasta and mushrooms tonight to show you how sorry me and Daddy are for this. But remember we are very proud of you and and you are a lion, hence your name. xxx

My heart sank like melting ice cream in the blazing weather outside.

"What's wrong, Leo?" asked Rosie.

I handed them the phone so they could read the message as I pressed myself against the wall and slid down.

"Mam says you two were brilliant by the way," I remarked shortly.

"Is she for real?" remarked Michael after he and Rosie finished reading the message. Cynthia was reading it now.

Having to stay with Aunt Madeline in the country in Cardiff. She despised me, detested me, loathed me, hated me. She only favoured Jason and that was a real mystery. Another big mystery is how my dad was a kind, loyal person as she was his sister. When I was just seven years old me, Mam, Dad and Jason went to visit her. Dad's plan to be exact so he could work out his different with her but it ended badly; I was just playing with my mini figures of Harry Potter, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger on the floor and she shrieked that I was making the floor dirty with my bare knees. Dad was lvid and he used us all out without even saying goodbye to her. Jason on the other hand was cooed upon an spilled by her as he was just sitting there and napping. It seemed for Aunt Madeline to be a sign for him to be a proper gentleman. She only managed to give him a ten pound note but for me, a pound-fifty. I used to by a book copy of The Wind in the Willows. Then on either mine or Jason's Birthdays, she would spoil him with huge chocolate bars, magazines, Marvel action figures while I would end up with old-fashioned shirts, rule books, second-hand footballs and History books - which I didn't really mind as I was a keen learner and she introduced me to the unfortunate Anne Frank so she did me a favour in a way. But my last summer was met with a bigger situation when I accidentally trespassed on the property of Mr. Oliver Gorwood. He was a councillor of my home and he threatened to have me arrested in his strict juvenile prison. But I narrowly escaped when the storm that day struck lighting on his land burning away all the proof he needed of my so-called crime. But now I had to spend the whole weekend on the first day of the holidays with Aunt Madeline.

Monday: I watched a movie with Michael in the Vue.

Tuesday: I watched the whole animated series of The Animals of Farthing Wood to give me courage for the weekend.

Wednesday: I went to the beach for a day to myself.

Thursday: I watching some Disney movies with Rosie and we went to a restaurant i the evening.

Friday: I went up to what used to be Mr. Gorwood's property as he fled and now I could sit there reading for hours on end.

I was reading the two Felix Salten books: Bambi and Bambi's Children. I only chose those two because I felt nature was my home for I was about to do tomorrow. And it also gave me the comfort I needed for a wonderful dream I had last summer. The dream was that Mr. Gorwood tracked me down the house of a kindly wildlife professor, Eve Frinvie and I slipped and fell into a raging rapid river. I noticed that I was above another world and I fell into it. There I had received my trademark name, 'Leo Barning from Above'. But it was accident in all honesty. I only said my full name and I was from above and the people there took it literally and treated me like a hero or a lord of some kind.

Those people happened to be talking rabbits. Animated talking rabbits. They made me feel at home while I was hiding and I made so many good friends there; the leader Hazel, his little brother Fiver - my best friend next to Michael, brave little Pipkin - one of the kittens, pretty Primrose - Hazel's mate, grumpy sarcastic Hawkbit, laughable clumsy Dandelion, heroic stubborn Bigwig and beautiful Blackberry. She was the one rabbit whom I felt was a relative. I loved her dearly and she loved me right back. What I would give to be with them now. If only it handy been a dream, my parents could entrust them to me and I would have been free two days of Jason seeing as Aunt Madeline favoured him.

I thought the same thing over and over as I packed my clothes, pyjamas, toothpaste and brush, shampoo, laptop, Nintendo DS and games, and the five books was currently reading along with the Bambi stories:

Lord of the Flies by Sir William Golding

Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne

It by Stephen King

War Horse by Michael Morpurgo

That night, I showered, brushed my teeth, combed my long, blonde hair, got into my Pepsi pyjamas, clambered into bed and switched on my PlayStation to play Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, a game I had played so many times I now literally know by heart even now at twenty years of age. I played it all the way to the night, three hours the game was to last if you wanted everything completed such as all the mini games and earning all seventeen Famous Witches and Wizards Cards. I wanted it to be as long as I could make because whenever I dreaded something, I wanted to do something which I knew would last a while in order to keep away from it.

Finally, after being sorted into Gryffindor (though my house is Hufflepuff), meeting Ron, Hermione, Hagrid, Draco Malfoy and Neville Longbottom, attending classes, sneaking through off-limit corridors in the Invisibility Cloak, knocking out Mountain Trolls, playing Quidditch, roaming the Forbidden Forest and entering the Forbidden Corridor to fight the Man with Two Faces, Dumbledore awarded the House Cup to Gryffindor and the game was over. After the evil laugh had passed, bringing me back to the main menu of the game, I switched the game off and went to sleep.

Perhaps it was from the evil laugh that caused it as well as the face of Voldemort but I was greeted with a nightmare I never forgot which took me back to a memory of being told of a dangerous enmity in the universe of Watership Down; the Gold-Toothed Shadow. I was in bed and suddenly, everything went cold and the blanket tightened above me. My bed was just in front of the closet door which steamed at the sides and a snarl was heard inside it. A ferocious snarl almost like the sounds of the scary noises of my childhood's imagination. The door swung open and then there was a huge rabbit the size of a dog with fiery red eyes and a long golden buck tooth in the middle. It leaped at me, still tight under the blanket and looked at me, cackling like the evil cackle form the game I played. I closed my eyes and it was gone, the closest door closed. I got out of bed, switched on my Hogwarts crest lamp and went back to bed.

The alarm on my iPhone went off, we had breakfast, showered, got dressed, brushed our teeth, loaded the luggage, locked the house, got into the car and made for the train station.

So many positive turns had approached I don't really know where to start. Mr. Gorwood was gone, I had a wonderful adventure and best of all, made wonderful friends. But now it was about to start in misery again. I had finally finished my run of playing Benvolio in Romeo and Juliet in college. I amongst Michael Dawnrah, Rosie Rell and Elliott Edderdeen had been asked to fill in for the show due to lack of boys. The director had hired me for Benvolio, which I was happy with as I see him as me, being a guy to stop fighting and make peace, Michael was hired as Mercutio which was definitely his role as he was a popular prankster towards his abusive uncle and a very comedic person, Elliott Edderdeen was hired for Romeo which truthfully disheartened me because although he was handsome and tall, he was not the sweet, sensitive gentle young man Romeo was which made me feel sorry for the beautiful Rosie Rell who was hired for Juliet - last minute!

The original actress dropped out calling Shakespeare the typical misery writer and stormed out. Rosie just so happened to volunteer as she knew the whole script by heart having watched the Franco Zeffirelli film eight thousand times along with some other adaptations. Mind you, her skin was beautiful and pale and her hair was jet black so it was no surprise on how the previous spectators commented on her looking exactly like Olivia Hussey, the actress from the film.

I watched her in the wing as she was kneeling over the body of her "love".

"What's here cupped close in my true love's hand?" I watched her recite. "Poison I see hath been his timeless end! O'churl! Drunk all and left no friendly drop to help me after! I will kiss thy lips; hap'ply some poison may doth hang on them to make me die with a restorative."

I had to cover my eyes for this for I hated having to watch her do that, especially since I knew deep down she was mine.

"Thy lips are warm!" she sobbed.

It was amazing to me how she could bear the idea of sobbing over someone she equally hated.

"Yea, noise? Then I'll be brief."

She picked up the dagger and pointed it at herself, her role about to end forever.

"O'happy dagger! This is thy sheath."

She plunged it into her chest and groaned. "There rust and let me die."

And her role of Juliet was over forever. I could literally her some sobbing in the audience. Of course should make them sob - she was the goddess fo Shakespeare.

A glooming peace this morning with it brings. The sun, for sorrow, will not show its head. Go hence to have more talk of this sad things. Some shall be pardoned and some punished; for never was a story of more woe, than this of Juliet and her Romeo, said the voiceover for the last time forever.

"Well done, guys!" I said to everyone in the boy's dressing room.

We all gathered together in a group selfie.

"You were brilliant, mate," said Michael Dawnrah, my best friend as we knuckle-nudged.

"You were great too," I said. "You were picked to be Mercutio for a reason."

"Nah, I don't know if I was that great."

"Oh but you were," I assured him as I did an impression on his death. "A plague on both your houses!"

"They have made worm's meat of you!" he continued playfully.

"What?" I began when he squirted water on my front making me yelp.

Everyone burst out laughing including me.

"Not bad, guys," said Elliott Edderdeen proudly. "There was a big mistake with Leo and his talk with me about Rosaline and he said 'What sadness in hours legends Romeo's hours.'"

"My mind fogged," I said. "You begged to omit half the What Light Through Yonder Window Breaks monologue and I know it all. Heck you were even itching though most of the second act."

"My tights were itching! One of you put itching powder in my tights!"

He glared at me, Tybalt, Friar Laurence, Balthazar and the Prince. Sampson and Gregory on the other hand offered their center fingers at him.

You're better off with the thumb bite rather than that."

"Those two gestures are actually the same thing, tallow face," said Gregory.

"And your excuse is stealing Lord Capulet's lines?"

"I think we were all equally great," I said in my defence trying to keep the fight down so the Montague's and Capulet's wouldn't start another war, since it had already taken the lives of their two children.

"Indeed, Barning," said Elliott, "but I've watched many West End shows and learned so many tips. You should learn that way you can improve your acting."

I could not believe what I was hearing I simply could not! I had been acting since I was eleven and landed many big roles like Charlie Bucket from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Oliver Twist in Oliver!, Ralph in Lord of the Flies, Friederich in The Sound of Music and Ratty in The Wind in the Willows! I never had a big career as Elliott Edderdeen did due to the fact that I put drama down for a while to catch up on sports while he on the other hand, put his big head on the stage making sag under it's weight. I then decided to go back to it and I enrolled along the same time as Rosie who had just finished her dancing course. She earned high grades with her talent. One of her ambitions she told me was to play Odette in ballet Swan Lake. High chances she had for it too for she played the lead three times in their Christmas dance shows much to the envy of the other prima Donnas; Clara in The Nutcracker, Tinkerbell in Neverland and the Queen of Hearts in Wonderland - the story that made he who she was today I might add. When she was small, she began her career playing the title role in a grand production of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and her performance of the popular character brought so much fame, many saying that it must be the sort of Alice that Lewis Carroll himself pictured while creating her from the real Alice Liddell. After this, she moved onto musical theatre where her reputation grew, earning leads and she had recently been cast as Belle for Beauty and the Beast which was to be performed this Christmas. But seeing her talent, our director for regular acting wanted her to help out when she could and only said yes for her love of acting.

"You were all wonderful." My thoughts in her were interrupted when the real figure appeared by the doorway. "Especially you, Leo," she added.

"Err, thanks, Rose," I said rather shyly.

"But I was loved mostly," said Elliott proudly. "I'm sure you and me were the best, Rosie," he added, putting and arm on her shoulder.

"Um, everyone has their own unique talent of acting," said Rosie.

"But with us being the star-crossed lovers," he said. "We are sure to be wed one of these days if we keep performing with each other. We'll perform on the West End happily together."

"I suppose we will," replied Rosie, but in very unconvincing tone.

Half of the guys had already left to enjoy their summer holiday until it was only me, Michael, Rosie and her closest friend Summer Sunn. She was a slim, African girl with hair as black as Rosie's. She also happened to play the Nurse.

"So another summer ahead," said Michael.

"What's your aim?" I asked him. "I shouldn't really have to ask that, should I?"

"Nope," said Michael leaning against the wall. "Uncle Ridd is going to suffer again."

His uncle was a very abusive man who taught PE at my comprehensive school, but his nephew was full of pranks to humiliate him. To the point that he constantly chases him and that was how Michael got his YouTube nickname SonicDawnrah as to how fast he was. I'm glad he did so as his uncle insulted my home which I could never forgive him for, saying it was known for murders. Meeting Michael was one of the best moments of my life. It started in our primary days. We were in separate schools but his school collaborated with mine to put on a production of Oliver! the popular Lionel Bart musical. I was cast as Oliver and that same I landed that, i was taken to meet this tall, brown-haired boy and my teacher "Leo, I would like you to meet Michael Dawnrah who will be playing the Artful Dodger."

We went to each other and shook hands introducing each other:

"Michael Dawnrah."

"Leo Barning."

To this day I always remembered that event. I pictured we would be doing this summer, watching movies in the Vue, making movie projects, cricket, we were literally the sort of brothers you never see anymore - except Hazel and Fiver, two special friends I met last year. But more to them later.

"Come on, Summer!" called her younger brother Sky. "I wanna go home. PS4."

"Goodness me, Sky!" reacted Summer. "There's more to life than PS4 when you could be on the stage doing something productive."

"Just hurry up," he whined.

"He's adorable," responded Michael.

"Oh shut up," laughed Summer.

"Well, I'll see you in the summer, Summer" said Rosie as she kissed her cheek.

"I'm in a few night concerts, babe," replied Summer kissing her cheek back while chuckling at Rosie's joke. "I'm gigging at Spoons this weekend if you and Cynthia want to come."

"Yes!" squeaked a voice making Sky yell. It was Cynthia Rell, Rosie's little sister. She ran up to her sister and hugged her.

"Hello, sweetheart," greeted Rosie as she kissed her head. "Sorry I'm late but I had to help tidy the dressing rooms."

"Can we go to watch Summer sing in the weekend?"

"Of course. Are you up for it, boys?" asked Rosie.

"Yeah why not. I'll just replace Uncle Ridd's ID with a fake one before coming."

"Identified Idiocy," I remarked. "Why don't you title that?"

"Neat!" responded Michael clicking his thumbs shooting his pointed fingers at me to which I did the same.

"Summer!" badgered Sky shaking the door in his frustraion.

"We know it's summer, Sky," I replied. "Hence the boiling weather."

"I can stop to speak to friend you know," said Summer, infuriated by her brother's behaviour. "See you lot Saturday."

And she left in her own pace despite her brother's nagging.

We giggled at the sight when my phone vibrated waring me of a message; it was from my mother:

Hello, sweetheart. I hope the finals matinee performance went well. A few of my friends from work came today and they said you were amazing - and that you were right about the fall with the casting choice for Romeo. But please tell Rosie that they thought she was a wonderful Juliet and they wet themselves at Michael. I'm sorry to start your summer off like this but on Saturday me and Daddy have to go to London to reunite with a long-lost friend. No one is available to look after you and Jason expect Aunt Madeline. I know you and her don't get on well but she is the only option. It is only for the weekend sweetheart and I promise me and Daddy will make it up to you somehow - something expensive. Just keep out of Jason's way and don't try Aunt Madeline's patience and no harm will come to you. She's never done anything evil but she can make you do house chores for many good hours. You nearly had your own summer ruined last year and we want to keep it a positive one this year don't we. Again I know this is bang out of order for you but we have a very strong, courageous son who will pull through anything. Maintain that reputation to keep yourself strong for this weekend. I will see you when you get home. I'll cook you steak, pasta and mushrooms tonight to show you how sorry me and Daddy are for this. But remember we are very proud of you and and you are a lion, hence your name. xxx

My heart sank like melting ice cream in the blazing weather outside.

"What's wrong, Leo?" asked Rosie.

I handed them the phone so they could read the message as I pressed myself against the wall and slid down.

"Mam says you two were brilliant by the way," I remarked shortly.

"Is she for real?" remarked Michael after he and Rosie finished reading the message. Cynthia was reading it now.

Having to stay with Aunt Madeline in the country in Cardiff. She despised me, detested me, loathed me, hated me. She only favoured Jason and that was a real mystery. Another big mystery is how my dad was a kind, loyal person as she was his sister. When I was just seven years old me, Mam, Dad and Jason went to visit her. Dad's plan to be exact so he could work out his different with her but it ended badly; I was just playing with my mini figures of Harry Potter, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger on the floor and she shrieked that I was making the floor dirty with my bare knees. Dad was lvid and he used us all out without even saying goodbye to her. Jason on the other hand was cooed upon an spilled by her as he was just sitting there and napping. It seemed for Aunt Madeline to be a sign for him to be a proper gentleman. She only managed to give him a ten pound note but for me, a pound-fifty. I used to by a book copy of The Wind in the Willows. Then on either mine or Jason's Birthdays, she would spoil him with huge chocolate bars, magazines, Marvel action figures while I would end up with old-fashioned shirts, rule books, second-hand footballs and History books - which I didn't really mind as I was a keen learner and she introduced me to the unfortunate Anne Frank so she did me a favour in a way. But my last summer was met with a bigger situation when I accidentally trespassed on the property of Mr. Oliver Gorwood. He was a councillor of my home and he threatened to have me arrested in his strict juvenile prison. But I narrowly escaped when the storm that day struck lighting on his land burning away all the proof he needed of my so-called crime. But now I had to spend the whole weekend on the first day of the holidays with Aunt Madeline.

Monday: I watched a movie with Michael in the Vue.

Tuesday: I watched the whole animated series of The Animals of Farthing Wood to give me courage for the weekend.

Wednesday: I went to the beach for a day to myself.

Thursday: I watching some Disney movies with Rosie and we went to a restaurant i the evening.

Friday: I went up to what used to be Mr. Gorwood's property as he fled and now I could sit there reading for hours on end.

I was reading the two Felix Salten books: Bambi and Bambi's Children. I only chose those two because I felt nature was my home for I was about to do tomorrow. And it also gave me the comfort I needed for a wonderful dream I had last summer. The dream was that Mr. Gorwood tracked me down the house of a kindly wildlife professor, Eve Frinvie and I slipped and fell into a raging rapid river. I noticed that I was above another world and I fell into it. There I had received my trademark name, 'Leo Barning from Above'. But it was accident in all honesty. I only said my full name and I was from above and the people there took it literally and treated me like a hero or a lord of some kind.

Those people happened to be talking rabbits. Animated talking rabbits. They made me feel at home while I was hiding and I made so many good friends there; the leader Hazel, his little brother Fiver - my best friend next to Michael, brave little Pipkin - one of the kittens, pretty Primrose - Hazel's mate, grumpy sarcastic Hawkbit, laughable clumsy Dandelion, heroic stubborn Bigwig and beautiful Blackberry. She was the one rabbit whom I felt was a relative. I loved her dearly and she loved me right back. What I would give to be with them now. If only it handy been a dream, my parents could entrust them to me and I would have been free two days of Jason seeing as Aunt Madeline favoured him.

I thought the same thing over and over as I packed my clothes, pyjamas, toothpaste and brush, shampoo, laptop, Nintendo DS and games, and the five books was currently reading along with the Bambi stories:

Lord of the Flies by Sir William Golding

Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne

It by Stephen King

War Horse by Michael Morpurgo

That night, I showered, brushed my teeth, combed my long, blonde hair, got into my Pepsi pyjamas, clambered into bed and switched on my PlayStation to play Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, a game I had played so many times I now literally know by heart even now at twenty years of age. I played it all the way to the night, three hours the game was to last if you wanted everything completed such as all the mini games and earning all seventeen Famous Witches and Wizards Cards. I wanted it to be as long as I could make because whenever I dreaded something, I wanted to do something which I knew would last a while in order to keep away from it.

Finally, after being sorted into Gryffindor (though my house is Hufflepuff), meeting Ron, Hermione, Hagrid, Draco Malfoy and Neville Longbottom, attending classes, sneaking through off-limit corridors in the Invisibility Cloak, knocking out Mountain Trolls, playing Quidditch, roaming the Forbidden Forest and entering the Forbidden Corridor to fight the Man with Two Faces, Dumbledore awarded the House Cup to Gryffindor and the game was over. After the evil laugh had passed, bringing me back to the main menu of the game, I switched the game off and went to sleep.

Perhaps it was from the evil laugh that caused it as well as the face of Voldemort but I was greeted with a nightmare I never forgot which took me back to a memory of being told of a dangerous enmity in the universe of Watership Down; the Gold-Toothed Shadow. I was in bed and suddenly, everything went cold and the blanket tightened above me. My bed was just in front of the closet door which steamed at the sides and a snarl was heard inside it. A ferocious snarl almost like the sounds of the scary noises of my childhood's imagination. The door swung open and then there was a huge rabbit the size of a dog with fiery red eyes and a long golden buck tooth in the middle. It leaped at me, still tight under the blanket and looked at me, cackling like the evil cackle form the game I played. I closed my eyes and it was gone, the closest door closed. I got out of bed, switched on my Hogwarts crest lamp and went back to bed.

The alarm on my iPhone went off, we had breakfast, showered, got dressed, brushed our teeth, loaded the luggage, locked the house, got into the car and made for the train station.

I was reading the chapter of It, where the Losers Club are doubtful whether they had killed Pennywise the Clown or not and make a blood oath that in the next twenty-seven years, if they haven't killed the monster, they will all return to finish the job. But reading the book was very short-lived as Jason started listening to music on his MP3 and sung quietly - he can't even sing.

Finally, we reached the train station. Dad waited in the car as Mam saw us off.

The train station was a simple one, the sort which did not have many and was not as hectic as Kings Cross Station or Paddington Station.

"Good luck, sweetheart," she said kissing me on the cheek as I did the same. "Just toe the line and you'll be alright. Please look after Jason even if it kills you. He won't cause any trouble like last time."

We eyed him as he walked into a nearby cafe for some soda.

Just last year I was attempted of being arrested for an unfair crime and Jason betrayed me to the man Oliver Gorwood. Jason got himself grounded for the entire summer and sent to boarding school as an extra punishment. It was a very blissful summer for me for I could read in quiet, listen to music in quiet write in quiet, play my video games in quiet and watch moves in quiet. But now that summer was over and I was stuck with the squirt, surpassed by a Dolores Umbridge of an aunt, though she had never carved I must not tell lies onto my hand - yet.

"Enjoy your reunion," I said.

"Thank you, babe," said Mam as we hugged one last time. Jason came out with a bottle of coke and Mam said to him "You be on your best behaviour. Yes?"

"Yes," grumbled Jason.

They hugged and kissed and she made for the car. I watched them drive away and Jason nudged me.

"You gonna get the tickets or should I?"

"Where's your debit card?"

He pulled a face and walked back into the cafe to sit down. He was only fifteen meaning he had one more year before getting a bank account.

Soon we were on the train, the engine started and we were off, Jason in a different compartment which was totally fine by me. I just sat watching passing fields and thinking what the others were doing at the down right now.

We boarded off the train, and found a taxi driver holding a sign up as the crowd passed by: Leonardo Joseph Barning & Jason Malcolm Barning.

"That's us!" I announced.

He led us to the taxi that awaited us, we loaded our sport bags into the boot, got in, buckled up and took off.

"She'll hand me more money than you," boasted Jason.

"Of course," I responded. "She knows how quickly you squander it."

We drove for a half hour until we came to huge, white house with red windows and a red front door, two lioness ornaments on each side of the porch and the garden was huge. A circular cloister space, a gazebo at the far end, a fountain and a path leading to a beautiful looking forest.

I thanked the driver and me and Jason walked up to the path as he took off.

Jason knocked on the door knocker was also shaped of a lioness and a huge muscular, pale-haired young man opened. He was wearing a black suit and tie and pretty much resembled Lurch from The Addams Family by his height. "We're the mistresses nephews sir," I said.

"Welcome," he said in a deep voice.

He brought us into the house and we looked around. It seemed to have changed a lot since I last came here and that was decade ago; the rooms had expanded, more ornaments were placed on the furniture and books shelved neatly.

"IS THAT MY LITTLE JASEY-WASEY?!"

There she was; a very fat, short woman in curly brown hair and a pale, yellow dress running down the stairs and covering Jason with kisses, his face decorated with red imprints of her lips.

Then she turned to me frowning.

"Havent changed much I suppose?"

"I see you haven't either," I responded.

"WATCH YOURSELF!" she roared. "I was kind enough to give you a roof over your head. You can be my guest and try prison if you choose not to smarten yourself up. Dawl here can deal with your most unreasonably," she added, eyeing the butler.

"I'm big, I'm handsome, everyone a girl deserves. So you watch yourself. I know how to handle the likes of you."

"Show them to their rooms, Dawl," ordered Aunt Madeline. "By that I mean show the guest to his room and show the other his connivence."

We followed Dawl up the stairs, our bags over our shoulders. We headed p the landing and Dawl stopped. He greeted Jason with a huge room with a big television, a big bottle of Pepsi and Ready Salted Pringles. He was already making himself at home as Dawl took me to my room; it was two floors up and the door needed a coat of white paint.

Dawl opened it and I was met with the shirt of room you'd have at a care home; old-fashioned pictures, very ancient books, a boring carpet and a small splinted desk with a pathetic excuse for a lamp.

"Make yourself at home," said Lurch in an unwelcoming manner. "And watch for the rats."

He shut the door leaving me alone.

Rats. I saw no holes. Why do they think I believe in those fairy tales of ratty attics? I'm twenty years old.

I didn't even bother to unpack; I just got out my phone and looked at my favourite photo until dinner; my drawing of Waterhsip Down itself. I drew the same day I returned home and to add with it, sometime this year, I sketched the characters there as best as I could remember them to stick onto the picture; Hazel standing with Fiver sitting on his shoulders, Blackberry smiling sweetly with her paws over her pregnant belly, Hawkbit smiling (for once), Dandelion lying on his back, laughing out loud with his paws over his head, Bigwig saluting, Pipkin doing the same and Silverweed lying in the sun.

"Wish they could see me now," I said. "They would bring me back to the warren and stay there for the remainder."

I thought about Blackberry and wishing how she could be my aunt while Jason had Aunt Madeline. She had been like one to me since I visited the warren, even nursing me after completing a dangerous task. I decided to nap, so I lay on my bed, close my eyes and tried very hard to dream that I was back at Watership Down.