Lockdown in Dandelion Estate: Chapter 1

“Noooo! No, no, nooooo!”

“Calm down! It is not the end of the world,” Edward said laughing at his sister’s sensitivity.

“It nearly is!” retorted Ivy, blowing her nose for the hundredth time.

Nearly in tears, the Llandy children sat at the table staring at the news in the daily paper, except Michael. He was gazing at the bowl of fruit on the table.

“Yes they can. They’ve closed them in Italy and France already,” muttered Laura, having followed the news carefully for the last few weeks.

“What about my SATS! They’re in May!” wailed Ivy.

“You can forget about them. They’re cancelled,” remarked Laura, rolling her eyes.

“Wow, I never knew you were that keen on tests or even school in general,” Edward said, “ What changed you?”

“Well unlike you I care about which school I go to and SATS helps me get into the one I want,” Ivy replied, “And I worked soooo hard for them!”

Michael climbed onto the kitchen counter to peel a banana, oblivious to the fact that his siblings were having the biggest argument of the decade.

“Let’s stay positive, at least you get some more time to study. What do you think I can do? Practice netball in our tiny back garden? I was so happy to be Captain of the team and we had a really big match next week. I’m sure we would've won!” moaned Kate.

“With someone like you as Captain, definitively,” grumbled Michael.

Hearing the key turn in the lock, Michael threw the skin into the bin and jumped off the counter before his mother realised what he was doing. His siblings carried on.

“Ha ha ha! I’m in year 9! The only things I’m missing are probably my end of year exams which are a nuisance anyway!” Edward remarked

“SHUT UP! You are missing your End of Year Show! Boasting about having the lead role weren’t you? But well, can’t do that now can thee?” Ivy laughed “HAHAHA!”

“I’m going to have it later, aren’t I?” Edward grinned.

“NO,” said Kate, as if it was an obvious answer.

“Yes I will,” Edward replied with a trace of hesitation in his voice.

“No! You will not!”

“Oh no,” said Ivy, a thought dawning on her.

“What?” cried Kate, staring at Ivy.

“We won’t be able to see our friends again, will we?”

“What do you think? At least you won’t see Miss Prunawa again...We can Zoom or Skype them,” Kate suggested.

“Is dinner ready?” asked Michael. The other’s sighed. Was their 8 year old brother ever going to understand that food did not make up the universe?

“Soon,” said a voice from behind, “Dad’s getting pizza to make up for the bad day,”

“Mum!” cried Michael, “You’re home!”

Before the other children had time to tell their Mother what a terrible day it had been there was a loud and insistent ringing at the door.

“That must be Dad,” Mum said, “Sit down, I’ve got some news for you!”

Puzzled, the children sat down. What could it be? News? What could be bigger than schools closing?

“Hello everyone!” cried Dad, bustling into the room with a tower of pizza boxes in his hands.

There was a muttered hello back.

“Well,” began Mum, “You know that schools everywhere have been closed,”

“A tragedy,” sighed Edward sarcastically, earning a sharp look from his mother.

“So Dad and I have decided to move to your Uncle and Aunt’s until this is all over,” Mum beamed at her children.

“YAY!” shouted Michael loud enough to make his unsuspecting older sister jump, “I like Aunt Brunny and there are really nice servants there.”

“I’m fine with Uncle John but Aunt Brunhilde…she’s a witch! I’ll bet we have to sleep in a dog kennel or something like that and she will curse us forever! She is completely evil!” Edward moaned.

“Oh don’t be so dramatic darling!” Mum laughed, “It will be lovely to have a large garden, some space to run around and play fun games together. I think she is a great aunt!”

“And,” added Dad, “They invited us to come to their house. So we can’t just refuse.”

“Yes we can,” Edward grumbled, under his breath so that only his siblings could hear.

“I like her! She gave me sweeties last time we went there!” whispered Michael as they climbed up the stairs to brush their teeth.

“Urgh! Stop it!” moaned his siblings.

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