Her name was Katie
Author: Auty

Chapter 13
Calorie counting

As we sit down for the last lesson of the day, Katie looks pale and shaky. She keeps nibbling on her lip, which is starting to crack. I wonder if she makes herself sick after everything she eats? If so, how is she surviving? I once saw a documentary about a man living in the wild and he said you can only go for two weeks without food. Maybe Katie is eating but because she makes herself throw up, she isn't gaining any weight. Either way, it's not good.
On this hot, sunny Wednesday afternoon, no-one is in the mood for Miss Burn's English lesson on poetry. Some of the kids are sleeping and some are mucking around, throwing paper aeroplanes. I look helplessly at Katie who is hunched over a poetry book, eyes focussed on the text. I'm surprised, normally she has that distant look in her eyes, in her own little world, probably thinking about how much weight she has to lose. Today though, she seems really interested in what she is reading, which makes me think it isn't 'The Tyger' by William Blake. I lean over my desk to try and get a closer look. I can see she is reading a little book within a book and see lots of number on the page. I strain my eyes and see the word 'calories'. Then I realize what Katie is reading.
"Katie could you read the first line for us please", Miss Burns says loudly, making us both jump.
My heart starts thudding for Katie, wondering how she is going to get out of this. Katie looks flustered, her cheeks getting a little flushed, the first colour in them I have seen in weeks. She carefully slides the calorie book under the table and onto her lap. I glance at Miss Burns who doesn't seem to have noticed.
"Katie? Everyone is waiting", she says folding her arms.
"Tyger, Tyger burning bright, in the forests of the night..."
"Thank you, now Millie, carry on please".
I give a small sigh of relief for Katie's sake and see that Katie looks relieved to. She puts the little calorie book in her bag and that same distant look comes back into her eyes as the lesson continues.


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