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The Coastal Junior

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Story Title: The Coastal Junior

Type of story: Long Fic

Main Characters: See character section below

BTTB rating: A

Genre: Anything from angst to comedy

Does story include spoilers: No

Any warnings: Will advertise before each chapter

Summary: Gavin Damons, a famous journalist, quits his job to edit The Coastal Gazette. He sets up a junior version of the paper, The Coastal Junior, to be produced by the students of Summer Bay High.


A/N: The story is a lot better than the summary. This is based on the ITV television series 'Press Gang' staring Julia Sawalha. Also, this is not my best work, I wrote it whilst trying to break my writers block.


Belle Taylor is the Lynda Day character – Editor

Ruby Buckton is the Sarah Jackson character – Investigative Reporter

Aden Jeffreys is the Spike Thomson character – Reporter

Nicole Franklin is the Sam Black character – Head Graphics Designer

Angelo Rosetta is the Colin Mathews character – Reporter

Geoff Campbell is the Kenny Phillips character – Deputy Editor

Annie Holmes (Campbell) is the Toni Tildsley character – Reporter (The Junior Coastal Junior)

Lucas Holden is the Danny McColl character - Photographer

Cassie Turner is the Julie Craig character – Deputy Graphics Designer

Drew Curtis is the Frazz Davis character - Horoscopes

SET IN 1989

-Chapter One-

Page One; Part One

Belle Taylor sat behind a large desk in a dull building. She had a pen in her hand and was going through a list of names. It contained the people Sally Fletcher had ‘volunteered’ for The Coastal Junior. The Coastal Junior was the newest newspaper in town, owned by Gavin Damons. Gavin was a star reporter, who had worked his way to the top in the city, before quitting to run The Coastal News. The Coastal Junior was a spin-off of this. Belle threw the pen aside.

“Did anybody see what the lead story in The Coastal News was today?” She called out; a few people looked up from typewriters,

“Newly married couple killed in boating accident,” Geoff Campbell told her as he sat down at a desk next to Belle’s, a bronze plaque reading ‘Deputy Editor’ was attached to the front. Belle jotted this down.

“Anything in it for us?” She asked Geoff, he shook his head,

“We could do a cartoon. Two coffins side by side with a ‘Just Married’ sign attached to them,” He offered, Belle shook her head, and Geoff shrugged.

“Belle!” Ruby Buckton, the investigative reporter, called out, before making her way through groups of desks over to the editor, “Have you seen my chair?”

“No,” She shook her head, watching as Ruby groaned,

“I know there was one there,” She muttered before walking away, Belle giggled as she watched Ruby run her hand down her back gingerly.

“Belle Taylor?” A male asked, she nodded, “Miss Fletcher sent me,” Belle nodded again,

“Angelo Rosetta?” She asked, the boy nodded, she pulled out a pieced of paper, “Fill out this form please,” He grabbed the form,

“I don’t have anything to write with,” He muttered shyly, Belle pulled a pencil out of a tin,

“The pointy end,” She told him, before shooing him away, Geoff stood up and walked over to the edge of her desk,

“NB?” He asked, Belle sighed,

“NB plus! He was in my maths class year seven. Had to number his fingers to help him count!” She scoffed, Geoff suppressed a laugh.

“How do you spell ‘salmonella’?” Drew Curtis called out. His desk was close to Belle’s; she looked at him confused.

“What story’s that for?” She asked, Drew shook his head,

“It’s not for a story. It’s for the horoscopes!” he exclaimed, Belle lowered her head onto her arms, groaning and muttering swear words under her breath. A young woman with blond hair advanced towards her.

“I think I've got it!” She cried, giving Belle a fright. She held out a piece of cardboard with the words ‘The Coastal Junior: Making a Difference’ printed across the top, Belle examined it,

“That looks great, Nic,” Geoff smiled, Belle coughed,

“You don’t like it, do you?” Nicole asked, sounding disappointed, Belle coughed again,

“You see the ‘t’ in ‘coastal’?” Belle asked, indicating the letter, Nicole nodded,

“That’s the bit you don’t like?” She asked hopefully, smiling a little. Her smile disappeared as she noticed the look on Belle’s face.

“That’s the bit I do like, do it again!” She demanded, grinning as Nicole’s face fell. She turned to face Geoff’s disapproving stare, “What?” She asked, standing up from her chair.

“Well I didn’t know you’d just borrowed it until I sat down!” Ruby’s voice rang out, startling a sleeping Lucas, who instantly fell out of his chair, “Hang on! Where’s my desk? Did somebody take my desk?” Ruby screamed out, Geoff couldn’t help but laugh. Belle pulled out a manila folder.

“Three days until first edition Lucas, three days!” She told the boy. “Geoff, can you please sort out the rainy-day folder?” She asked, thrusting the tan coloured folder into his arms,

“But boss -” Geoff began, but Belle started walking away. “It’s 8.30!”

“We’ve done three hours already!” Belle called out in shock, turning around to her staff, “Guys! Pack up. It’s 8.30. Time for school.” Cheers and applaud was what she received in response.


School had finished for the day. The Coastal Junior news team was back in the office. Belle Taylor was setting up a television.

“What’s that for?” Geoff asked her as he walked into the meeting room,

“I don’t know Campbell. What do TV’s do?” She asked him mockingly, a look of hurt flashed across his face. He and Belle had known each other since primary school, and never, in all that time had she ever been like this.

“I’m sorry Geoff. I’m just under a lot of strain. We’ve got no front page story, no second page story, nothing worthy of being on page three, unless I take up Lucas’s offer to pose semi-nude, and we’ve got nothing but NB’s out there,” She muttered, pointing to the newsroom. She sat down and lowered her head onto the table,

“It’ll be okay, we’ll be able to put together an issue. Even if it is about Colleen Smart’s sewage.” He told her, placing his arm around her shoulders.

“Am I interrupting something?”A blond, tanned boy asked in a strong American accent. Geoff removed his arm from around Belle’s shoulder instantly, shaking his head.

“Who volunteered you?” Belle asked, looking up at him, he shrugged,

“Pardon?” He asked, taking a seat on the edge of the table,

“Who... sent... you?” Belle said drawing out her words slowly, the boy nodded,

“Miss... Fletcher,” He replied at the same speed as Belle. She pulled out a form from her clipboard and passed it over to him. He grabbed it from her hands and looked over at it. “I’m stuck on something,” He told her, Belle looked up at him,

“Which one?” She asked, he pointed to the first question on the sheet.

“Uh, name,” He said,

“NB,” Geoff said, grinning at Belle, she returned the grin,

“I was just thinking that,” She fumed, thrusting the sheet back towards him. He picked up and pen and started filling the sheet out,

“Here, is this right?” He asked, pushing the questionnaire back towards her, Belle groaned as she looked at it,

“You’ve ticked the section where it says ‘Christian Name’!” She exclaimed,

“NB,” Geoff muttered again, raising a smile from Belle as he walked out,

“I do have one, by the way,” He told the now angry brunette,

“Good to hear, now put it one the form!” She yelled, walking back into the main room, he followed her.

“Do you always make friends by questionnaire?” He asked sarcastically, Belle took a seat at her desk,

“I’m not making friends,” She told him, the boy scoffed.

“It’s Aden Jeffreys, by the way,” he told Belle, she looked at him in shock,

“Aden Jeffreys, the one who, you know, at the school dance?” She asked him, Aden smirked as a look of disgust crossed her face, “That was disgusting.” She muttered, before standing up.

“Where’re you going?” He called after her as she began walking over to Ruby,

“Nowhere,” She replied simply, throwing a tape recorder down on Ruby’s desk, “I see you found it Rubes,”

“What?” She asked confused, Belle smirked, before tapping her fist on the desk, Ruby smiled, “Yeah, it was in the corridor,” A look of puzzlement came to Belle’s face,

“Right...” She muttered, before tapping the tape recorder, “You, my friend, are our star reporter, make us proud!” Ruby smiled, before placing the machine in her pocket and exiting the building,

“What about me?” Aden called out, Belle turned to him, “What do I do?” Belle picked up another tape recorder and placed a tape in it.

“Go out and find us a story,” She told him, placing the recorder in his hand, “Lucas, go with him.” She ordered, Lucas stood up and picked up his camera.

“What kind of story?” Aden asked the frustrated girl, she shrugged,

“Anything, whatever you find,” She replied, Aden nodded,

“One more thing, when we start going out, and I dump you, do you want me to do it face to face, or by a letter?” He smirked, Belle flushed a bright red.

“Get out of my newsroom!” She screamed, Aden laughed as Belle groaned and sat down in an empty chair.

“Bye!” He said to her, walking out of the room, a large grin on his face.

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Thanks guys :D. I don;t like how this next chapter turned out, but that's my opinion, what do you think?

WARNINGS: Mild sexual innuendo and a swear word at the end.

-Chapter Two-

Page One; Part Two

“So, who else works with this paper?” Aden asked Lucas as they stood across the street from the local Drop-In Centre, Lucas had his camera at the ready.

“You see those men over there?” Lucas asked, pointing towards three men, skulking around the back of the building,

“Yeah,” Aden said, watching as they pointed towards two windows, “D’you reckon they’re planning a burglary?”

“Nah, one of the guys is Mr. Thumper, he’s the owner,” Lucas told him, Aden looked at him, baffled,

“Then why’d you tell me to look?” Aden asked him, Lucas took a photo of the men,

“My dad told me about some plan to knock down the Drop-In Centre and build a new supermarket,” He replied, before taking another photo,

“This is great,” Aden said, starting to walk over to the men,

“Jeffreys!” Lucas called out; Aden turned around and shrugged,

“What?” He asked,

“Get back here before you draw attention to yourself,” He hissed, Aden walked back towards the sidewalk, “What the hell were you doing, you NB?” Lucas shouted,

“I was going to talk to them,” Aden told him, a tone of innocence in his voice, Lucas scoffed, before taking another photo, “What does NB mean, anyway?”

“According to Belle, it means one with no brain,” He told the boy, Aden nodded “You know nothing about reporting, do you?” Lucas asked, he shook his head.


“I've got all twelve horoscopes!” Drew called out excitedly, before walking over to Belle’s desk; she was with Geoff, Ruby, Cassie and Nicole, “Belle, what’s your star sign?”

“Platinum,” She told him, Geoff coughed, suppressing a laugh,

“Platinum...?” He asked, confused as he looked down at his note pad,

“What about carbohydrate?” Geoff asked the boy; Drew shook his head, writing this down, the look of confusion still on his face,

“Well I’m a curium,” Ruby said, grinning,

“And I’m bismuth,” Nicole grinned, Drew looked at them confused,

“What are you Cassie?” Drew asked, almost instantly regretting it,

“I am a ununquadium,” Cassie said, Geoff couldn’t take it. He ducked under Belle’s desk and broke into a fit of laughter,

“Right,” He said, walking away. The group turned and looked at each other, holding back laughter,

“We shouldn’t have done that,” She told them, trying to keep a straight face, “Rubes, what have you got for us?” she asked the young girl, Ruby shook her head,

“Nothing,” She told the group, Belle’s face fell, “And before you blame me, it’s not my fault. It’s just, nothing interesting ever happens in this town,” A few people scoffed.


“Excuse me!” Aden called out to a man outside the drop-in centre; he turned around and saw the boy advancing on him,

“What?” The man asked rudely,

“Is it true you’re selling the drop-in centre?” Aden asked, the man was taken aback by the boy’s upfront nature,

“Of course not, now will you excuse me?” The man asked, pushing the boy out of his way, Lucas walked up to him,

“He’s selling,” Aden told him, Lucas gave him a perplexed look,

“How d’you work that out?” He asked, Aden sighed,

“He denied it.” Aden told him simply.


“Guys! Listen!” Belle called out from her desk; the newsroom quietened down and Belle rose from her seat, “I just got a note from Jo, Gavin Damons’ assistant, he wants me to remind you of the rules. We are not allowed to approach any senior journalist for help,” she said, glancing towards Geoff, who raised his arms in defence,

“Sorry,” He muttered, Belle turned her attention back towards the paper,

“Avoid printing controversial matters, as The Coastal Junior is marketed towards school kids, and we must pay for all additional services, telephones, fax machines ect.” Just as she finished this sentence, a telephone began ringing,

“Geoff, answer the phone,” She ordered him, before giving him a confused look, “We don’t have a phone,”

“Talk about wrong number,” Geoff muttered, before standing up, he started looking for the source of the ringing, “Belle!” He called out, she stood up and walked over to him, he was standing near a pot plant,

“What?” She asked him, he pointed down to the pot; a phone cord was extending out of it, she bent down and pulled out a telephone,

“Answer it,” Ruby called out, Belle lifted the phone up and placed it to her ear,

“Hello?” She said into the receiver, “Right,” She said, before hanging up,

“Who was it?” Geoff asked her, she ignored him and walked over to her desk,

“Angelo Rosetta!” She screamed, “Get you ass here now!” A few people were taken aback by Belle’s outburst,

“Who was it?” Geoff asked her again, Belle inhaled deeply, before exhaling slowly,

“Somebody for ‘Angelo Rosetta Productions’” She told him, she threw a little black book over to him,

“It’d be wise to contact his next of kin,” She said calmly.

“Did you call me boss?” Angelo said, walking into the main room from the corridor, Belle nodded, before walking over to him,

“What’s this?” Belle asked, pointing to the cord emerging from the pot plant,

“It’s a pot plant,” Angelo told her, a smirk on his face,

“What’s in it?” She asked, a frustrated tone in her voice,

“Soil,” He muttered, the smirk still on his face,

“I’m going to kill you,” Belle’s eyes were half closed and her voice was low, the smirk on Angelo’s face fell as Belle lunged towards him,

“Calm down Belle!” Ruby yelled, wrapping her arms around Belle’s waist, she pulled the aggravated girl back; Belle took a deep breath and stopped struggling,

“Sorry,” She muttered, before bending down to the plant and pulling out the deep red phone, “Angelo, tell me, how are we going to afford this?” She asked the boy, he grinned sheepishly,

“We’re not...” He muttered, Belle looked at him in marvel,

“What?” She asked placidly, Angelo smiled at her,

“You know my uncle, the rich one?” He asked, Belle nodded, “Well, he owed me a favour,”

“So he’s paying for it?” Belle asked, Angelo shook his head,

“He got a friend of his to link us with the Gazette’s line,” He told her, before recoiling in fear, anger was rising in Belle again,

“So we’re stealing it!” She screamed, Angelo shrugged as Ruby grabbed Belle’s shoulders,

“Well... sort of,” He replied, before plunging behind a desk,

“We’re finished,” Belle said, turning towards her desk, “We haven’t even got our first edition out and we’re already finished,” She muttered to herself, before taking a seat,

“We don’t know that,” Geoff said soothingly, Belle glared at him,

“They’ll find out, there’s a phone line leading from our building to theirs. What do we tell them it is, an electrified washing line?” She asked sharply,

“Hold the front page!” Aden called out in his distinctive American accent, “Aren’t you happy to see me?” He asked Belle as he noticed the room was silent,

“I think I saw enough of you at the school dance,” Belle shot back at him, Aden grinned seductively, causing Belle to groan, “What have you got?”

“From what we’ve gathered, the Drop-In Centre is being sold to a chain of supermarkets,” He told her,

“And that should be on the front page,” Belle asked him, Aden’s brows furrowed as he thought,

“Because this paper deals with things relating to children and teenagers, and the Drop-In Centre is a major part of their life,” He said, a large grin crossed his face as Belle’s jaw dropped,

“Um, and, do you have any proof?” Belle asked hopefully, Aden shook his head and an intimidating smile crossed her face,

“Belle, we don’t need proof, we’ll just print it as a piece where the readers can draw their own conclusions,” Geoff said from next to her,

“There is no way he is getting the front page!” belle yelled, “I mean, it, there is no way IT is getting the front page,” She corrected herself, Aden looked at her smugly,

“I can get you proof,” He told her, “Do you remember that girl I broke up with?” he asked, Belle shook her head,

“You’ll need to be more specific,” She said coldly,

“Liza. Her dad works for the council,” He said, picking up the phone, “When did we get this?” He asked,

“It doesn’t matter,” Geoff said, Aden began dialling a number, “Liza, hi! Remember me. Yeah, I’m sorry it didn’t work out either. What? Oh, I’m glad you’ve moved on. I bet he is bigger than me, yes, I bet his is bigger than me that way to. Listen, Liza, what? Yeah, just keep sleeping on his lawn, that’ll get his attention, yes, following a guy into the bathroom would get his attention too.” He said, shaking his head, Belle folded her arms across her chest,

“I’m off!” Nicole called out from the graphics room, Belle nodded,

“Listen, Liza, is your dad there? Why? Because I want to speak to him, that’s why!” Aden shouted into the phone,

“Geoff, can you stay here and take notes, I have to go,” Belle said, picking up her coat from the back of her chair,

“Listen, Taylor, just to let you know, I’m free tonight, for a date...?” He asked, grinning, Belle groaned,

“Jeffries, I will not go out on a date with you, not now, not in ten years, not ever” Belle shouted, “Now, do us all a favour and get fu--”

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Here's the next chapter :).

-Chapter Three-

Photo Finish; Part One

Belle entered the newsroom. It was 5am, and the Coastal Junior team had two days until the first edition. She advanced towards her desk, passing Ruby, Geoff and Aden, she glanced down towards a small wooden box, ‘Belle’s Swear Box’ was written across it in red marker, she glanced across at Geoff who nodded. Belle pulled out a handful of silver coins and inserted a few into the box,

“Belle, what did you think of my article?” Ruby called out from her typewriter,

“Oh, right,” Belle said, she stuck her hand into her pocket and pulled out some more coins and put a few more into the box, “It needs work,” She said croakily,

“Is it true your swear box takes MasterCard?” Aden asked, Belle glanced at him angrily,

“I’m thinking of habits I want to kick,” She said, pulling out a notepad and looking over it,

“Jo’s coming!” Cassie called out from the door; Belle looked up in horror, trying to remember where the phone was,

“Where’s the phone?” Belle asked,

“In my desk drawer,” Geoff told her, she glanced towards the door nervously,

“Well, I’ll go and find out more information on the Drop-In Centre story,” Aden muttered, turning towards the door, pulling Drew along with him.


“You need to get everything to the printers by four o’clock,” A middle aged woman was telling Belle. She had deep auburn hair and a slim figure, she was Jo, Gavin Damons’s assistant

“Mr. Damons said three-thirty,” Belle informed her,

“Four o’clock at the absolute latest. That extra half-hour can be useful,” She said, sitting on the edge of Geoff’s bench, Belle glanced down at the cord; it was hanging slightly out of the drawer.

“Belle, we ought to head off soon,” Ruby called out, she was standing by a cupboard, placing a tape inside a tape recorder,

“Right,” Belle said, her eyes still on the cord, Jo glanced down and saw it. She clasped the handle and opened the drawer, she pulled the telephone out, and guilty looks came over Belle and Geoff’s faces,

“Why is everybody looking so guilty because you’ve had a phone put in?” Jo asked, Belle and Geoff avoided eye contact with her, “You haven’t, have you?” She pleaded,

“Sorry,” Belle muttered, looking down at her feet, her face flushing red,

“Is it on our account?” Jo asked the young girl. Belle nodded hesitantly, before glancing over to Angelo, he was standing next to Ruby.

“You’re dead,” She mouthed slowly, before looking up at Jo, “What’ll happen if Mr. Damons fins out?” Belle asked,

“He’s not going to,” Jo replied, Belle gave a sigh of relief, “The only way he’s going to find out is if I tell him, and I’m not going to because I don’t want to be there when he finds out!” Jo snapped at the team before walking out of the room,

“Rosetta!” Belle screamed as Angelo began walking towards the darkroom, “Rosetta!” She yelled again, this time Angelo turned around,

“Did you call me boss?” He asked, his voice shaky, Belle glared at him, a look of rage in her eyes,

“I keep telling you this, but never follow through,” Belle began, watching as Angelo backed away slowly, “You’re dead, and I mean it,” She said coldly,

“Belle, we’d better get going,” Ruby said hastily, grabbing Belle’s arm and pulling her towards the door,

“Lucky you,” Belle called out to Angelo as she walked through the doors of the newsroom.


“Where are we going, anyway?” Ruby asked Belle as they walked down the sidewalk near Summer Bay High,

“To find more information on the Drop-In Centre story,” Belle grinned, Ruby looked at her in confusion,

“I though there were people already on that,” She said, Belle shook her head,

“Only Peter Pan and Tinkerbelle,” She said, pulling out her car keys, “Wanna drive?” She asked Ruby, she shook her head,

“No thanks,” She muttered.


“Hey, Cassie,” Angelo said, walking up to the deeply tanned girl, Cassie looked up from her desk,

“Yeah?” She asked, Angelo sat down in a seat next to her,

“I heard you’ve got an English assignment due tomorrow,” He said, sticking his hand inside his coat, Cassie nodded, “Have you started it?”

“I haven’t had time too; Nicole’s been keeping me busy with the first edition,” She said, looking back down to the large sheet of paper, she pulled out a ruler,

“I've got a copy of it here; I can give it to you, for a price,” He smirked, Cassie looked at him, her eyebrows raised,

“Keep talking,” She said with an interested tone in her voice.


Belle and Ruby were standing outside a large building looking upset,

“Why wouldn’t she see us? All we wanted to do was ask her a few questions,” Belle asked Ruby as the looked down at the street,

“I bet she’s really busy, being the head of the council must entail a lot,” Ruby told her, patting her on the back comfortingly, “Don’t worry, we’ll just run what we’ve got,”

“But an interview with the head of the council would have been better,” She muttered, she noticed Aden and Drew walking towards the council building, “Oh look, it’s the three stooges,”

“But there’s only two of them,” Ruby corrected here, Belle grinned,

“Do you think they know that?” Belle giggled, Ruby grinned, “They won’t let you in,” she called out to the two boys,

“I bet we can!” Drew called back as the pair made their way up the stairs towards the building,

“What makes you think that you can succeed in something we failed at?” Belle asked him, Drew rolled his eyes,

“Face it Belle,” He said, placing his hand on her shoulder, she violently pushed it off, “I’m much more attractive than you,” He grinned, before walking up to the door,

“Good luck,” Belle said to him before starting to make her way down the stairs, her arm linked with Ruby’s.

“Oh, and Belle, I meant to tell you this the first time I saw you, if his was the olden days, I’d kill a dragon for you,” She grinned, raising his eyebrows slightly, Belle scoffed,

“That is the worst pick up line I've ever heard,” She told him before turning her back on him again,

“Listen, Belle, if you go out with me tonight, I promise you that I’ll kill the first dragon I see,” He informed her seductively, Belle scoffed again, she walked down the stairs.

“He’s full of himself, isn’t he?” Ruby asked as they made their way towards Belle’s car,

“He’s full of something, anyway,” Belle giggled before opening her car doors.


Belle and Ruby made their way back into the news room; Belle was still looking disappointed,

“Belle, thank God you’re back!” Lucas told her as she made her way towards her desk, “Can you tell your sister to stop using my typewriter?” Belle gave him a blank stare,

“I don’t have a sister, Lucas,” She said, pushing past him, Lucas placed his hand on her shoulder,

“You better tell her that then,” He said, pointing over towards his desk. A young girl was sitting there. She had deep brown hair that was tied back in long ponytail and pale blue eyes, Belle glared from her to Lucas before charging towards the desk,

“You must have been born whilst I was out,” Belle said harshly, the young girl grinned,

“I've always told mum that you need to spend more time at home,” She shot back, Belle grinned, impressed.

“What are you doing?” belle asked, the young girl handed over a sheet of paper with writing on it, “The Junior Coastal Junior?” She asked, throwing the paper down next to the young girl,

“I’m Annie, by the way,” The young girl said, “This paper is for youths, right? But it’s run by year twelve students, so I figured, you need a section for students my age, which is where the Junior Coastal Junior comes in,” Annie told her, Belle grinned at the girl, a look awe across her face,

“Welcome aboard,” Belle grinned before making her way towards her desk.

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Thanks guys :). The following chapter was written at 4 o'clock this morning, so I don't know if it's any good. It's a short chapter that deals with the first edition :).

-Chapter Four-

Photo Finish; Part Two

“One day to go guys! One day to go!” Belle called out as she walked into the newsroom, a notepad under her arm, she placed a few more coins into her swear box,

“What’s that, boss?” Geoff asked, pointing to the notepad, Belle grinned and threw it down on his desk; Geoff picked it up and scanned through it,

“An interview with Donna Green,” Belle grinned before pulling out a copy of The Coastal Gazette and opening it,

“The head of the council?” Geoff asked, he watched as Belle nodded, “Who got it?”

“Would you believe Aden Jeffries?” Belle grinned as Geoff’s mouth fell open, “He dressed up as a Viking and told her he was a singing telegram,” Belle gave a small laugh and Geoff glanced across at the boy, he had his feet up on his desk and a can of coke in his hand,

“And you said he wouldn’t be valuable to the paper.” Geoff scoffed before standing up, “Do you want a coffee Belle?”


“Congratulations on a brilliant first issue,” Jo said to Belle the day after the paper was published,

“Thanks Jo,” Belle said, pulling out a copy, she glanced down at the headline, ‘Going... Going...?’, “What did Mr. Damons think?” She asked, Jo glanced away, a look of anxiety was on her face,

“He wants to see you,” She said, before turning to face the young editor, “Donna Green’s with him,” Belle looked at her in confusion.

“Why?” Belle asked, Geoff came back from the tea room, two mugs in his hand,

“Jo, hi!” Geoff said in surprise, he looked from Belle to Jo and back to Belle, “What’s going on?” He asked. Belle took a seat on the edge of her desk,

“Jo?” She asked, Jo looked at her feet, before finally making eye contact with Belle,

“It’s about your front page story,” Jo muttered before turning to exit the newsroom. Geoff and Belle gave each other confused looks.


“Belle Taylor, this is Donna Green,” Gavin Damons informed her as she entered his office, Belle extended her hand, but retracted when she noticed the serious looks on both Donna and Gavin’s faces,

“What’s happening?” She asked, taking a seat on facing the two adults,

“You broke the first rule of reporting,” Gavin told her, glancing across at Belle, she felt her face flush bright red, “You didn’t check your facts,”

“Not only was what you printed incorrect, it was irresponsible,” Donna said, her voice was brisk and stone cold, “There will be no new supermarket until we as a council decide what affects it will have on the local community and existing shops around the general area,”

“Listen, Ms. Green, we never stated there was going to be a new supermarket, we just speculated that the Drop-In Centre may close,” Belle informed the woman, “There was no actual mistake,”

“So you mean you aren’t going to apologise?” Donna asked, Belle glanced at her and Gavin,

“We will apologise for any error in the article, should there be one,” Belle told the older woman, who was taken aback by the upfront nature of the girl,

“Well then, I expect to see a formal apology in your next edition, should there be on,” She told Belle sharply before standing up, “Goodbye Gavin,” She said, Gavin nodded in acknowledgment, Donna gave Belle one final glance before exiting the room,

“Are we in real trouble, Mr. Damons?” She asked, Gavin closed his eyes before nodding. Belle felt her heart plummet to her toes.


Geoff was standing in front of Yabbie Creek Police Station, his hands in his pockets,

“Geoff?” Somebody with a heavy American accent called out, he turned around and saw Aden making his way towards him,

“What are you doing here?” He asked the boy, Aden pulled out a copy of the first edition of The Coastal Junior, he thrust it into Geoff’s hands,

“I've had a thought,’ Aden informed Geoff, before pointing down to the photo on the front page. It was of the men Lucas had photographed surveying the Drop-In Centre, “If they aren’t buying the building, what are they doing?” Geoff nodded, impressed.

“Yeah, what are they doing?” He muttered to himself,

“What are you doing here, anyway?” Aden asked,

“Belle got a call from Gavin Damons telling her to go down to the police station,” Geoff informed him. The door to the police station opened and Belle exited, “Belle, Aden had a thought...”

“Lie down and it’ll go away,” She told Aden before turning back to Geoff, “Those men that Lucas photographed outside the Drop-In Centre, they’re professional arsonists!” Belle told him excitedly, Geoff grinned in amazement.

“Imagine that, we report one story and come up with another,’ He grinned to Belle, “So, a second edition?”

“Yep,” Belle said, wrapping her arm around his shoulder, “About how we helped catch the arsonist,” the two began walking away, leaving Aden standing in front of the station,

“This was my story!” Aden yelled, Belle and Geoff turned around, “So can I be involved?” He asked, Belle scoffed.

“How can I put this nicely Jeffreys? No way, absolutely not, you must be joking, forget it!” Belle shouted back before she and Geoff began walking away.

NEXT CHAPTER: Light and dark, joy and sorrow, comedy and tragedy – such can be the contrast between two days. The world looks one way on Monday, but quite different by Tuesday morning.

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Thanks guys :). Okay, this chapter may be sligtly confusing. Normal writing is Monday, italic writing is Tuesday.

-Chapter Five-

Monday/Tuesday; Part One

6 Weeks Later

“Okay guys!” Geoff called out from the middle of the newsroom, everybody made there way over to him, “First day of the week, first staff meeting of the week. I just want to remind you that tomorrow is cancelled.


Belle entered the newsroom and flicked the light on. Her face was slightly tear stained and she had a depressed look upon it. She dawdled lethargically over to her desk and pulled of her jacket slowly, she placed it on the back on her chair and sat down. Belle crossed her arms and placed them on her desk. The telephone began to ring. She ignored it.


“Cancelled, that is, for everybody but the graphics team,” He called out, a few groans followed,

“Why us?” Nicole called out, she was standing next to Cassie,

“Because Belle wants you to stay behind with her, Ruby and I to discuss the holiday issue of the paper,” He replied, Nicole groaned,

“We’ve already discussed the holiday issue,” Cassie called out, Belle glared at the tanned girl,

“You know how it goes Cass, we keep discussing until everyone agrees with Belle,” Geoff joked, before turning to face the editor,

“It’s called getting it right,” She said, looking at Nicole and Cassie, Geoff turned back to the group,

“That’s it for now guys, just remember, Tuesday morning cancelled, Tuesday evening, graphics team,” He called out.


Belle glanced up, Geoff was standing next to her; he shrugged.

“The phone’s ringing,” He informed her, Belle turned away from the boy,

“Is it?” She asked, her voice was low and horse, her eyes red from tears, “I wondered what the birds were singing about,” Geoff picked up the phone and placed it in the desk drawer, he glanced across the room at the sign that read ‘Tuesday is cancelled’


“Aden!” Angelo called out from his desk once everyone had gotten back to work, Aden looked up from his desk and Angelo motioned for him to come over, Aden stood up and went to the side of Angelo’s desk,

“Yeah,” He said, sitting on the edge of the desk,

“I need your help, with, girls,” Angelo said timidly, “I need your help in asking one out,” He muttered, turning his head away from Aden,

“Who is she?” Aden asked, mildly intrigued,

“Her name’s Olive Kerr, she works at the Pier Side Diner as a waitress,” Angelo said, Aden looked at him,

“Why don’t you do it yourself?” Aden asked him, Angelo replied with a sigh,

“Because I get nervous around girls,” He admitted, Aden suppressed a laugh, “So, will you help me?”

“Why me?” Aden asked,

“Because you know about girls,” Angelo replied, Aden raised his eyebrows,

“They’re the ones that wear skirts, right?” He teased, Angelo punched him softly in the shoulder.


Ruby walked over to Belle, a pile of paper in her hand, “Belle, you want the public transport feature by Wednesday, right?” She asked, Belle shook her head,

“I want it for tomorrow,” She said, Ruby looked over her notes,

“Tomorrow?” She asked as she looked through them, “But that’s tomorrow!” She exclaimed.


A pile of paper landed softly on Belle’s desk, she glanced down slowly at it, ‘Public Transport’ it read. Belle glanced up and saw Ruby looking at her sympathetically,

“For what it’s worth,” She muttered before sitting down on a chair to Belle’s left. The doors to the newsroom banged open and Aden walked in,

“Another happy day in these sad times, it doesn’t make sense but at least it rhymes,” He said, hanging his coat up on a rack, he pulled the chair from his desk to the opposite side of Belle’s and sat down, “Hi children,” He said,

“Where’s Angelo?” Belle asked him softly, Aden sat silent for a moment,

“Probably singing up a lamppost somewhere,” He replied cheerily, Ruby gave him a disapproving look, “He went out with the lovely Olive Kerr last night,” He told them, folding his arms across his chest,

“Right,” Geoff said,

“Have you seen her though, Geoff?” Aden asked, unfolding his arms and pulling out a photo, “Face like a pug,” He passed the photo over to the deputy editor.

“How can you talk like that this morning?” Ruby shot at him, slowly placing her arm around Belle’s shoulder, Aden rolled his eyes,

“Talking’s easy Rubes, you should try it sometime,” He told her sarcastically, “It’s just like writing, only louder,” He finished, Belle glared at him angrily,

“Cool it, Aden,” She said sharply, Aden scoffed before placing his feet up on Belle’s desk,

“Hey, I’m cool, I’m so cool I can freeze water with one touch,” He informed her. Belle, Geoff and Ruby glared at him.


“Okay, let’s get started,” Belle told the group after a short pause, Aden coughed,

“I still say we’re making to much of a fuss about this,” He told the group, Ruby and Geoff gave him angry looks, Belle glanced across at them before turning her full attention back to Aden,

“We’re trying to work out what happened on Monday night,” She told him sternly, Aden gave her a puzzled look,

“By looking at Monday day?” He asked, raising his eyebrows, Belle rolled her eyes before leaning closer to the boy,

“Yes,” She shouted, “It’s important to me, to you, to all of us, for the future,” She told him, Geoff rested his chin on his hand,

“No more cancelled Tuesdays,” Geoff muttered, Belle gave him a momentary look before turning back to Aden,

“So let’s start,” She told the small group, “Eight O’clock, Monday morning.”


“Excuse me,” A young boy asked Belle, he was masculine, tanned and had shoulder length hair, Belle looked up from the article she was writing, “I was just wondering if you’d had a chance to read the stuff I gave you?” He asked, Belle furrowed her brows,

“Stuff?” She asked, looking at him in confusion, the boy groaned,

“I gave you some stuff to look at last week, some sample articles, remember, you said you’d read it?” He asked, Belle closed her eyes, thinking back to the previous week,

“Oh, right,” She said, slowly opening her eyes again, “Did I ask you to do it?” She asked him, resting her chin on the palm of her hand,

“Well, not exactly, I’m on Nicole Franklin’s graphics team,” He told her, Belle’s eyes widened,

“Then why did you...” Belle began, but the boy cut her off,

“Because I think I’d be better on the writing team,” He told her, sitting down on the edge of her desk, “All I do there is draw the damn cartoons for,”

“Oh, you!” Belle said, looking away from the boy and back to her article,

“Have you had a chance to look at it?” He asked her, pointing to the overflowing in tray on her desk, Belle paused momentarily,

“I’m sure I've had a glance...” She said, turning away from the boy yet again, he glared at her before pulling a manila folder out from the in tray – it had been half way down.

“I don’t think so,” He told her, dropping the folder down in front of her, Geoff looked from Belle to the boy,

“May I ask how you knew it was there?” Belle asked sharply, “Under that pile?” The boy shrugged,

“You were away from your desk, so I had a look,” He said innocently, Belle’s eyes widened in anger,

“You went through my tray?” She asked him, looking into his eyes, he rolled his eyes,

“I’m sorry, but I’m getting sick of doing nothing around here except the cartoons,” He shot at her, Belle opened her mouth, intending to insult him, but Geoff interrupted her. He stood from his chair and walked over to them,

“Ric, I saw some of that cartoon you drew for Nicole, it was really good,” He said, placing his arm around Ric’s shoulder, Belle glared at him,

“Geoff!” She snapped, Geoff turned his head and faced her,

“Belle, have you met Ric Dalby?” He asked her, “He’s been with us a couple of weeks,’ Belle paused for a moment, millions of witty remarks going through her head; she took a deep breath,

“We’re getting to know each other,” She told Geoff, tilting her head sideways and giving him foreboding look.

“Ric, I think Nicole wants you, she’s doing layouts for the special,” He whispered in Ric’s ear, he nodded before giving Belle one final look of anger. Ric turned and walked over to the graphics room.

“Who is he?” Belle asked curiously, watching the boy walking into the graphics room, slamming the door violently.

“Who isn’t he?” Geoff remarked, placing his elbows on the side of Belle’s desk, “Great-great-great grandson of the founder of Summer Bay, and son of one of the richest men in town,” He told her,

“So, a jerk?” She asked seriously, Geoff nodded,

“But a rich one,” He added, “A well connected, rich jerk,” He muttered, nodding his head, Belle inhaled deeply.

“Is that why you interrupted me?” She asked, gazing at Geoff, “I had some really cutting remarks lined up,” She smiled, Geoff softly chuckled,

“Sorry, but I think we should tread carefully around him,” He muttered, Belle sighed.

“You always spoil my fun,” She told him, Geoff shrugged before raising his elbows from Belle’s desk,

“What are assistant editors for?” He asked her, grinning, Belle returned the grin before picking up the manila folder from the desk and throwing it back in her in tray.

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Same deal as before normal is Monday, italic is Tuesday.

-Chapter Six-

Monday/Tuesday; Part Two

“Yeah, you were right,” Aden said, leaning against Belle’s desk softly, “A jerk,” Belle stared at him,

“So, what happened next?” Geoff asked, stopping Aden and Belle from getting into a fight, Belle turned away from Aden and crossed her arms, Aden imitated her,

“Whilst you were talking to Ric must have been the time Annie came in with The Coastal Gazette,” Ruby said softly, she now had her arm wrapped tightly around Belle’s shoulders.


Annie walked into the newsroom, a folded newspaper under her arm and a shocked look on her face,

“Drew, have you seen this?” She asked the boy, who was looking down at the floor, he shrugged,

“Why? Have you lost it?” he joked, Annie sighed and lowered the paper, Drew looked up slightly and grinned at the young girl, she returned the smile briefly, she looked around and saw Aden and Angelo standing in the middle of the newsroom,

“Aden...” She muttered, walking up to the young blond,

“I’m not Aden, I’m Olive,” He snapped, turning back to Angelo, “Okay, this is the diner,” He said, pointing to his desk, Annie lowered the paper again disappointedly and turned away and walked over to Ruby, Annie leaned against the side of her desk,

“Ruby, it’s important,” She said, tapping the older girl on the shoulder, Ruby pulled her hands away from her typewriter,

“Annie, I’m busy!” She said angrily, “I have to be at school in half an hour and I have a lot of work to do, so will you please leave me alone?” She told the young girl, Annie shook her head,

“Read this,” She said, shoving the newspaper into Ruby’s hands, Ruby took the paper and began to read, her mouth fell open in shock,

“Belle!” She called out, Belle dropped the pen she had in her hand, stood up and walked over to Ruby’s desk,

“What?” Belle asked, folding her arms across her chest as she reached Ruby’s desk,

“Listen to this; ‘Dear Editor, I write to you to complain about some of the recent activities of the Coastal Junior,’” Ruby read,

“What?” Belle exclaimed, pulling the newspaper out of her friends hand, her eyes widening as she scanned it, “Whilst it is quite praiseworthy that there is such a venture available for young people, it is unfortunate that it has lead to, amongst other things, regular absenteeism from school. There are forged absence notes so that students who should be at school can work for the paper and even homework copies are circulated amongst the staff of the Coastal Junior to save them time for their other activities. The financial dealings of the Coastal Gazette also need closer inspection, in particular the activities of one, Angelo Rosetta, who is constantly in trouble with the editor, Belle Taylor, for numerous commercial ventures using the Coastal Junior’s funds. In conclusion, I think that the activities of the staff of the Coastal Junior merit closer inspection. Name and address not provided,” Belle looked from Annie to Ruby to the staff, who had stopped and listened as she read, people were looking around at one another with confused looks,

“Belle Taylor!” A stern voice called out from the door, it was Jo, she had her arms crossed across her chest and her jaw clenched shut tightly; she looked as if she was going to explode, “Gavin Damons wants to see you,” She shouted, Belle watched as the newsroom broke into chatter, she stood up and walked to the door and followed Jo to Gavin’s office.


“Do you normally publish letters from people who won’t give you their name?” Was the first thing Belle asked as she burst into Gavin Damon’s office. She sat down in a chair opposite him and crossed her arms tightly.

“No,” Gavin replied, moving closer to Belle, “Unless it’s a particularly interesting letter, or has an unusual angle on something, or provides information I wasn’t previously aware of,” He told her angrily, his face was pale red,

“How do you know a word of that letter, that anonymous letter, is true?” Belle asked him furiously, he glared at her sternly,

“I don’t,” He told her, their eyes meeting for the first time that day, “I’m just hoping it isn’t,’ he said before turning his back on the girl, Belle felt her heart sink – the editor was disappointed, which meant the end of the paper could be nearer than she though. Belle slowly got up from the chair and exited the room and walked out into the small waiting room,

“Do you know what gets me?” She asked Jo as she walked up to the front desk, “It’s all lies, such total utter lies,” She said, avoiding eye contact.


“Angelo,” Belle shouted as she walked back into the newsroom, upon hearing this he slid off his chair and cowered under his desk, “Get up from there, I’m not going to kill you,” Angelo breathed a sigh of relief and emerged from under the desk,

“I know that boss,” He said shakily, “I was just, er, doing something,” Belle looked at him for a moment before turning back to the copy of the Coastal Gazette she had in her hand,

“No more fake absence notes or homework copies, Damons is onto us,” She told him sternly, Angelo nodded, taking a small step back, “Right boss,” He muttered before walking back to his desk,

“It’s ringing,” Aden told him as he sat back down, a worried look crossed his face, “Don’t worry, it’s the perfect time to call her. She’s just out of bed, she’s just thinking of going to school, she won’t be in the right headspace, so she’ll even say yes to you,” Aden chucked before handing the phone over to the boy,

“I've tried phoning. It’s always her father who answers,” Angelo shuddered, taking the phone half-heartedly, “He’s so, commanding, all I want to do is give him my name and rank,” Aden gave another short laugh,

“You watch too many film, Rosetta,” He said, picking up the newspaper and opening it to the editorials,

“It’s ringing,” Angelo muttered to Aden, who nodded without looking up from the paper, “Heil! I mean, hello, Mr. Kerr,” Angelo yelled before slamming the phone down, drawing attention to himself from those nearest to him.


“Heil, he says!” Aden giggled, Belle gave him a frustrated look,

“Was that relevant?” Belle asked him dryly, Aden shrugged, still laughing softly, Geoff raised a smile, but it soon fell as Belle glanced at him,

“Well, it was very funny,” Aden shrugged, Ruby groaned in disgust, and another smile appeared on Geoff’s face,

“Funny?” Belle shouted at the boy, Aden looked away from her, “Can somebody explain to NB over there why we’re here?” She looked from Ruby to Geoff, and then back to Aden, who still had his head turned away from her and was now facing Ruby,

“What happened next?” Geoff asked hurriedly, trying to avoid another fight between the two, Belle looked into Geoff’s eyes before taking a deep breath,

“I guess the next thing that happened was we found out who wrote the letter.” She said to the small group.


Geoff pushed his way into Belle’s classroom. The recess Belle had gone. He had the manila folder Ric had give Belle under his arm,

“Ric Dalby’s writing,” He said, placing it down in front of her, Belle looked at him in anger,

“Is there anybody who doesn’t go through my in tray?” She asked him, Geoff looked away before pausing for a moment,

“Not really,” He told her, Belle’s mouth widened in shock, “We’re thinking of holding office parties there,” He told her, Belle shoved a few books into her bag,

“Sounds like you already do,” She said coldly, pushing a few more text books roughly into her backpack, “So, what’s his stuff like?” Belle asked, pointing to the folder.

“Mostly dull, uninteresting stuff,” Geoff said, pulling out the first piece of paper from inside the folder, “Do you want a sample?” He asked,

“Why not?” She replied, zipping up her backpack,

“Dear editor, I write to you to complain about some of the recent activities of the Coastal Junior,’ He read out, Belle stopped what she was doing and gave Geoff a blank stare.

“He wrote that?” She asked, shocked, Belle started doing up her backpack again before flinging it onto her back, she grabbed the paper from him and skimmed over it, “He didn’t even tell me,” She muttered, Geoff shook his head,

“Wrong,” He told her, pointing to he folder, “You’ve had that folder on your desk all week, you had your chance to stop him,” He watched as Belle’s eyes widened with shock. She ripped up the paper and placed it in the bin,

“Are you blaming me for this?” She asked him Geoff shrugged, walking over to the furious girl,

“I think Ric Dalby’s blaming you,” He said, Belle looked at him, puzzled,

“What for?” Geoff gave her a small smile before throwing the folder gently onto a nearby desk,

“Don’t ask me,” He angrily said, “I’m just the assistant editor,” He turned away and exited the room, leaving Belle in even more shock.

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This is my longest chapter yet, and by far my favourite to write, so I hope you enjoy it :). Same deal, normal is Monday, italic is Tuesday

-Chapter Seven-

Monday/Tuesday; Part Three

“Thankyou, Rory,’ Mr. Bartlett said as a young boy passed her a note, she read it before folding it, “Ric, Miss Fletcher wants to see you,” She said, handing him the note, Ric stood up and exited the classroom,

“Hi,” A female voice said from halfway down the hall, Ric turned around and saw Belle Taylor leaning on some lockers, “I’m Miss Fletcher,” She grinned.


“You really did that?” Aden asked the now fuming girl, “You really skipped a class and pretended to be Fletcher?”

“Yes,” Belle replied simply,

“And people say you’re boring,” Aden told her, placing his elbows back on the desk, belle exhaled deeply, turning her head away from the boy,

“Leave that out of this, Aden,” Geoff muttered, keeping his eyes on Belle.

“So what then?” Ruby asked, “You asked Ric about the letter?” Belle nodded,

“And that’s when things started to get nasty, when I asked him why,” Belle informed the other three.


“Because it’s true,” Ric said to the editor, his back pressed firmly against a few lockers, “There are forged absence notes, that Angelo kid does give out homework copies,” Belle grinned at him, and Ric shuffled across slowly, aware from her intimidating glare,

“Not anymore,” She informed him, “And only when we absolutely needed to, to keep the paper going,” She added, smiling at Ric’s defeat,

“You could have told me that before you sent the letter,” Ric retaliated, Belle’s face fell, “You had the chance to, if you read my work,” He said, Belle moved her leg until she was in a comfortable position,

“Have I got this right, Dalby? I’d have read the letter, and then I’d have read your stuff, and I’d have said, hey ‘Hey, Ric, there’s some pretty good stuff in here, why don’t we get you on the writing team? And while we’re at it, why don’t we forget that letter you wrote?’ You were trying to blackmail your way into working for the Coastal Junior. Do you know how sick that is?” Belle asked him. Ric gulped as the young women ripped into him.

“Well...” He began, but Belle interrupted him,

“What I don’t understand, Ric, is why? Why do this?” She asked him, leaning back onto the lockers,

“I’m sick of being ignored!” He told her angrily, Belle scoffed and shrugged her shoulders,

“You’ve only been on the team for two weeks,” She reminded him, He lowered his head,

“It’s long enough to be ignored,” He announced before walking away,

“It doesn’t matter now, anyway, the letter was published,” Belle called out after him, Ric spun around,

“Do you know who reads the Gazette?” He asked, “Sally Fletcher,” He turned and walked off, Belle shrugged before walking away.


Aden and Angelo walked up to the lockers, the bell indicating the start of lunch had just rang.

“Any moment now, Olive will be walking through that door,” Angelo told Aden, pointing at one of the classrooms excitedly, his heart was pounding rapidly inside his chest, his mouth had gone dry and his palms became sweaty. “I can’t do this,” He whimpered, pushing the back of his body up against the side of a locker located near an exit.

“Why not?” Aden said, giving Angelo a rather hard slap on the back, he winced before looking back to the door, there was no sign of Olive,

“Because I can’t!” He cried, turning to Aden, “If you do this for me, I will give you copies of every single piece of homework you get,” Angelo was on his knees now, pleading,

“What about what Belle...” Aden started to say, but Angelo cut him off,

“Who cares what Belle says?” Angelo snapped before clutching the end of Aden’s shirt, “Please! Please!” Aden gave a large sigh before nodding,

“Okay,” He said, Angelo climbed from his knees and clasped Aden’s hand tightly in his, a large smile on his face,

“Thankyou so much!” He almost screamed, Aden nodded, looking at him, somewhat taken aback. Aden walked around and saw Olive walking out of a classroom, gently placing books into her backpack,

“Err, Olive?” He asked her as he reached her, she nodded, “Hi, I've got this friend, well, he was kind of wondering if you were free tonight,” He told her, Olive grinned before flushing slightly pink,

“You don’t have to be shy,” She told him, her voice was soft and prim, Aden rolled his eyes,

“What?” He asked, Olive placed her hand on her hip,

“You’re Aden Jeffries, aren’t you?” The girl asked, Aden nodded, “I never picked you to be the shy kind,” She laughed, Aden rolled his eyes again,

“No, really, I’m asking for a friend,” He informed her, looking over to where Angelo was, behind the lockers, “Angelo!” He called out; Olive looked over to the same area, and smiled when nobody appeared,

“I don’t see any friend,” Olive said, the large grin still on her face, Aden sighed,

“Well, he’s around that corner,” He said, pointing to a group of lockers near a door. Aden placed his hand on her back and led her to where Angelo had been moments earlier, “Angelo!” He called out, he didn’t get an answer, and Olive gave Aden another large grin, and raised her eyebrows at him.


“Can you believe it?” Aden asked the three, shrugging his shoulders, “The guy can talk money out of anyone, but can he ask a girl out?” He scoffed; Belle shot him an angry look,

“I think we’re getting off the subject again,” She told him crossly, Belle crossed her arms across her chest,

“It’s just a bit of light relief,” He said, moving closer towards the editor, she avoided looking into his eyes,

“Spare me,” She muttered, Aden exhaled deeply,

“That was the point,” He told her, a tone of antagonism in his voice. Geoff cut in again,

“Where’d we get to?” He asked, looking at Belle and Ruby.

“I wanted to find out more about this Ric Dalby, so I went to see Martin Bartlett,” She told them, “Because I knew he took Ric for English.”


Belle stood outside the staff room, her back rested firmly on the wall, her arms crossed over her chest, she watched the door intently, waiting for Bartlett to exit. Belle was jut about to leave when Mr. Bartlett pushed through the door, a newspaper under his arms.

“Sir!” She called out, before making her way over to him, “You take Ric Dalby for English, right?” She asked him,

“I do,” He replied as they walked down the corridor,

“He’s a jerk, isn’t he?” She asked, Bartlett turned and faced her; Belle looked up at him,

“Is this a discussion?” He asked, looking the girl in the eyes, “Or an opportunity to agree with you. Or don’t you recognise the difference?” he shot at her, Belle shook her head,

“He’s got everything, but he’s still trying to cause trouble for the Gazette,” She said as they started walking up the corridor again.

“Belle Taylor!” A female voice shouted out, Belle and Bartlett turned around and saw a teacher advancing towards them, “Where were you last period?” She asked sharply,

“Why d’you ask?” Belle asked her, she gave Belle a sympathetic look,

“Miss Fletcher wants to see you,” She told her before walking away, Bartlett leaned in close to the younger girl,

“What’s this about, Belle?” He asked,

“Big, big trouble from the jerk,” She yelled before walking away.


“Is any of this true?” Sally asked Belle, pointing to the editorial section of the Coastal Gazette, Belle shook her head,

“It’s just an anonymous letter,” She told the principal, “Maybe, if there was a word of truth in it, there’d be a name at the end,” Belle lied, Sally looked at her unsympathetically,

“If I find one shred of evidence that any of this letter is true, it’ll be the end of the Coastal Junior,” She informed the younger girl, Belle’s mouth fell in shock,

“You can’t do that!” Belle shot back, Sally scoffed,

“You watch me, now go!” She shouted, pointing to the door. Belle left and walked down to the newsroom. She found Ric Dalby standing there with a folder in his hand,

“Photocopies of absence notes, photocopies of homework answers, details of who used them and when,” He said.


“Now you ask her out!” Aden told Angelo. They were standing out in the courtyard of Summer Bay High, close to where Olive was standing,

“But she’s going out with you know,” Angelo said, Aden laughed,

“Don’t worry,” He began, giving Angelo a pat on the back, “I told her about me and Lucas,” Angelo grinned, giving Aden a pat on the back,

“Okay,” Angelo said grinning,

“Just focus on your good points,” He told the Italian as he started walking towards Olive,

“What are my good points?” He asked, walking back to Aden. Aden furrowed his brows in concentration, “Um... er... you’re good with money?” Aden offered, Angelo nodded,

“Right,’ He said, walking up to the girl, “Olive?”

“Yeah?” She asked him, Angelo looked into her deep blue eyes, before coughing nervously,

“Would you like some money?” He asked, feeling his face flush bright red.


“Don’t you think we’re getting a little off topic?” Geoff asked, Aden shrugged,

“Don’t you guys find this funny?” He asked, Ruby turned to him, frowning,

“No, not just now, not today,” Ruby shot at him, Aden scoffed.

“Where did we get up to, Belle?” Geoff asked her.


“Shouldn’t we talk?” Ric asked Belle as they walked through the courtyard,

“You talk if you want to,’ Belle said, not looking at him,

“I think you’re getting the wrong idea about me,” He said, Belle turned her head and faced him, a look of astonishment on her face,

“So you’re not blackmailing me?” She asked, turning her head away again, Ric shrugged,

“I don’t really think of it as blackmail,” He said, smiling, “So, am I on the writing team?”

“Have I got a choice?” She snapped at him, and Ric’s grin grew,

“See you tomorrow!” He said, wrapping his arm around her shoulder, before pulling it away after she gave him an aggressive look,

“Tomorrow’s cancelled for everyone but the graphics team,” She reminded him, Ric smiled,

“See you Wednesday!” He called out before walking away,

“The hell I will!” Belle muttered to herself.


The doors to the Coastal Junior newsroom opened again, this time, Angelo walked in.

“Am I very late?” He asked, walking up to the solemn looking group, “I phoned to say I would be, but nobody answered,”

“We’re not answering the phone, just in case it’s the school looking for us,” Geoff informed him. Angelo sat down next to Ruby and Aden,

“So, how did your date go?” Aden asked the teenager,

“Don’t talk to me about girls! Complained all night she did,” Angelo told the group, he looked at Belle and Geoff, both had sombre looks on their faces, “I wasn’t wearing the right clothes, we didn’t go to the right restaurant,’ He moaned, looking over to Ruby and Aden, Ruby had the same sombre look on her face as Belle and Geoff, Aden, on the other hand, was holding back laughter.

“Angelo,” Ruby said softly, “Do you know why we’re here?” She asked, Angelo shrugged,

“I was wondering,” He replied, looking around the group,

“You mean you haven’t heard about Ric?” She asked, Angelo shook his head,

“Heard what?” He asked, “Has he backed down?” It was Ruby’s turn to shake her head now,

“Last night,’ Belle began, taking a deep breath, “After we went to see Ric, he took his fathers pistol, put the barrel in his mouth...” Belle told him,

“He put the barrel in his mouth!” Angelo said, laughing, “He put a loaded pistol in his mouth?" He asked, looking at Aden,

“Angelo,” Aden whispered,

“Was it loaded?” He asked, looking at Belle and Geoff,

“Not after he pulled the trigger,” Belle told him, Angelo’s face fell as he looked around the group again, seeing nothing but sombre faces.

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Normal writing = Monday, italic = Tuesday. Okay, just letting you know that I go back to school on Monday, so the updates will be less frequent :)

-Chapter Eight-

Monday/Tuesday; Part Four

“No one ever lacks a good reason for suicide.” - Cesare Pavese

“So, he’s dead?” Angelo asked, looking at Belle, before she had a chance to answer, Aden cut in,

“Well, he sure didn’t miss from that range,” He joked, Belle’s eyes widened in shock,

“Aden!” She shouted, his face fell as he saw tears welling in here eyes, he closed his mouth,

“You mean he killed himself right after we went and saw him?” Angelo asked in disbelief, Ruby nodded, “Right after?” He muttered, looking at the group,

“That’s what they think,’ Geoff informed him, looking away from everybody,

“But, we didn’t say anything last night?” Angelo asked, looking confused, “Did we?”


“Is this all Ric’s dad’s garden?” Aden asked in awe as they walked through what seemed to be a small rainforest. It was full of countless trees and plants, and many animals,

“Estate,” Geoff corrected him as he ducked under a low branch of one tree,

“Hey, if Ric’s this Ric, maybe we should let him on the writing team,” Angelo said, ducking under the same branch as Geoff,

“With all things considered, I think it’d be an easier solution,” Geoff said, placing his hand on Belle’s shoulder, she jumped slightly,

“No way,” Belle said, brushing his hand off of her, “I am not being blackmailed,” She told him angrily, stepping over a small bush,

“Even if it means the end of the paper?” Ruby asked, she was standing next to Aden,

“It won’t,” Belle informed them, ducking under a branch, “That’s what I’m going to tell him,”

“Why did we all have to come then?” Angelo asked, manoeuvring his body so he didn’t disrupt a spider’s web, “I've got a date later on, or have you forgotten?” He asked,

“You’re all my moral support,” She said, almost tripping on a woody shrub, “If I’m about to put a bomb under the Coastal Junior, I want you all standing on it with me,” She told them, Ruby gave her a small smile,

“Thankyou,” She said sarcastically, “I think we’d all like to say that we’re glad you thought of all us first,” She chuckled, a large shot rang out and everybody turned their heads – Ric was standing in an empty paddock, a silver pistol in his hand. He turned around and saw them advancing towards him,

“Oh, hi,” He said, reloading the gun, Belle walked up to him,

“You’re dad said we’d find you here,” She informed him, glancing nervously at the gun in his hand,

“You mean he actually knew where I had gone?” Ric scoffed, looking at the gun in his hand, “I didn’t think he knew I existed,” He told them, his voice sounding depressed.

“Listen,” Angelo called out from behind Ruby, Ric looked over to him, the gun clenched tightly in his hand, Angelo looked down at it fearfully, “We can come back when you’re not armed – I mean busy!” He called out, turning his back on the group,

“Oh, I’m just doing a bit of general shooting,” He told them, flashing the gun in the group’s direction, “Just passing the time. So what’s this, a story conference?” He asked them, Ruby shook her head,

“No,” Belle said harshly, Angelo’s eyes travelled back down o the weapon he had in his hand, “And even if it was you wouldn’t be involved in it,” Ric looked at her, a confusion across his face,

“What do you mean?” He asked, clenching the gun tightly,

“What I agreed to before,” Belle growled, “Forget it!” She told him, Ruby looked down at his fist; it was turning white as he clenched the gun strongly,

“But you...” He began, but Belle raised her hand, quietening him instantly,

“And if that means you’re going to have to bring the Coastal Junior down, fine, do it, but try and live with yourself afterwards,’ She told him heatedly, he looked away from her, “But there is no way you are going to blackmail me. One thing I will do for you, though, I’ll forget this incident ever happened. You’ll be welcomed back on the paper, and you’re welcome to submit articles to me, and one day, if you’re good enough, maybe you can join the writing team,” She was almost shouting now, Aden placed his arm on her shoulder,

“Calm down Belle,” He whispered into her ear, she pulled her shoulder away from him,

“And before I next see you, do some thinking,” She said, calmer than before, “Think about what kind of person goes blackmailing his friends, think about what kind of person you are Ric, because right now, you’re not that nice to know,” She looked once more at Ric’s now hurt expression, Ruby looked down at the hand his gun was in, his grip had loosened slightly. Aden gave her a small clap and Belle responded with a faint smile,

“So I turn up at the newsroom and all is forgiven?” Ric asked Belle, she nodded, “Just turn up on Tuesday and not a mention of this?” He asked, he sounded close to tears,

“Well, not Tuesday,” Belle reminded him, Ric rolled his eyes,

“Of course,” He said, his voice cracking slightly, “There isn’t going to be a Tuesday,” He mumbled, and the group turned away and began walking back to the house through the forest-like yard.

“Do you think he got the message?” Belle asked Geoff as they stumbled through the deep roots and shrubs.

“Right between the eyes,” Geoff told her, wrapping his arm round her shoulders, a large, muffled shot rang out and the grouped turned around. They were two deep into the trees to see anything. They continued walking.


In the newsroom, the group were sitting around Belle’s desk, all silent, all deep in their own thoughts. Belle blinked back tears before standing up from her desk and running towards the doors to the newsroom.

“Belle!” Ruby called out, standing up, Geoff stopped her from going after her,

“Better leaver her to it,’ Geoff mumbled, “You know what she’s like,’ Aden stood up and faced Ruby and Geoff,

“You guys are just amazing,” He shot at them, his brows furrowed in anger, “You let her skip a whole day at school just so she can sit there and work out she’s to blame for that jerk killing himself, he pointed at them angrily,

“You weren’t much help,” Geoff told the angered boy quietly, pointing back, Aden rolled his eyes,

“I was trying to change the subject!” He told them in exasperation, he walked over to the coat rack and pulled hic jacket from it,

“Maybe we’re all a bit to blame,” Ruby replied, Aden shook his head in disbelief,

“How is anyone supposed to know a guy is thinking about committing suicide?” He yelled at her, Ruby sat back down, avoiding looking at Aden in the eyes. Aden gave the group one final look before exiting the newsroom.


Outside the building, Belle was sitting on the sidewalk, her head in her hands, her eyes shut tightly. Aden walked out of the door and saw her. He sat down next to her.

“Blaming yourself is stupid, really stupid,” He said soothingly, Belle looked up and wiped a few teardrops away from her eyes, “It’s a fact of life. You cannot confess to a suicide. Tears began falling down Belle’s face again.


Everybody but Belle had gone home. She was sitting at her typewriter, a piece of paper loaded in it; her fingers were moving slowly as she typed. Finishing, she loosened it a little and signed her name at the end.

“Answer me one question,” A deep male voice said. Belle looked up and saw Mr. Damons standing in front of her desk. “Do you really think Ric Dalby killed himself because of what you said?” He asked, looking at Belle kindly,

“I don’t know,” She said, not looking at him, “Maybe,”

“From what I've heard, Ric was a lonely boy who didn’t get on well with his parents. A lot of things had happened in his life before he pulled that trigger, I don’t think what you said registered as one of the more important,” Gavin looked at the teenage girl, her face was tear streaked and her eyes were red, “If you want to learn something from this incident, remember this: Be careful what you say to people. It may be the last thing they hear.” And without one more word, he exited the newsroom.

“I’ll keep that in mind,” She muttered to herself. Belle looked down at what she had been typing before Gavin had come in. It was a letter.

‘Dear all,’ It read, ‘After what happened yesterday and my part In it, I don’t think it would be right for me to continue being the editor of the Coastal Junior. To be honest, I don’t think I could face it now, anyway. Thanks all for your support and I’m sorry if anyone feels let down. Please also convey my thanks to Mr. Damons. Best wishes and all my love, Belle.’

Belle stared at it for a moment or two before pulling on her coat and walking to the door, glancing back one last time, she flicked the lights off and exited the doors, intent on never returning.

NEXT CHAPTER: What will happen to the Coastal Junior now that Belle has left? Will Aden let Belle know how he feels for her?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry about being a bit late with the update, as I've had school. So here's the new chapter, a semi-filler with a small plot developing. I don;t really like this chapter, but I hope others do. And possible Adelleness next chapter :D!

A/N: I have to remind you that Annie is not related to Geoff in this fic :).

-Chapter Nine-

The Gaz; Part One

Geoff grimly looked down at a piece of paper in his hands. He was reading through it for what seemed to be the millionth time.

“She’s not coming back,” Angelo whispered to him softly. He had a rolled up piece of paper in his hand, Geoff glanced at it and chuckled for a brief moment, Aden glanced at the boy furiously.

“Everybody gather round!” Geoff called out from Belle’s desk. On it was her typewriter, her swearbox, and the remains of a Garfield plush toy. Slowly, the entire newsroom was surrounding him, all talking over one another, “Quiet!” He yelled, nobody paid him any attention,

“Shut up!” Aden shouted. The newsroom soon became silent,

“Before you ask, I don’t know when Belle’s coming back,” He said gloomily, watching the group,

“It’s been three days, Geoff,” Lucas called out from the graphics room, he was standing next to Cassie, Belle and another blonde girl,

“I know,” He told Lucas calmly, Cassie shook her head,

“She hasn’t even been at school!” She informed Geoff; he closed his eyes tightly and clenched his teeth,

“I know...” He told the Graphics Group, his voice was sharp,

“How do you know she’s even coming back, then?” Nicole asked from next o Lucas, Geoff gave her a disapproving look.

“Before I go on,” He spat at the Graphics department, “I want to remind you that Ric Dalby isn’t coming back. Remember?” Nicole and Cassie rolled their eyes in perfect unison,

“We know,” Cassie told him angrily before walking into the small graphics room, Nicole, Lucas and the other blond followed, the latter slamming the door as she did.

“So, Geoff,” Drew said, looking at him, “What about the new editor?” He asked, a smile appeared upon Angelo’s face and walked over to the graphics room,

“What?” Geoff asked in a state of confusion, Drew shrugged,

“The way I see it,” He said, moving towards the deputy editor, “Belle’s not coming back, so we need a new editor,” He said bluntly. Aden clenched his fist tightly, glairing at his friend angrily.

“Relax, Aden,” Ruby whispered to him soothingly, she was standing next to him and had her arm linked firmly with his.

“Belle’s coming back,” Geoff told the young man; Drew gave a noise of disbelief before walking back to his typewriter.

“Speaking of new editors,” Angelo said from in front of the graphics room, he now had a rolled up sheet of poster paper under his arms, Cassie was standing next to him, her arms folded across her chest, “I think we should have a vote,” He told the crowed, before unrolling the poster, on it was a picture of him in the Uncle Sam pose,

“What the fu...” Aden began to say, before Ruby dug her elbow into his ribs deeply, he looked down and saw she had a look of amusement on her face. Aden gave her a smile before looking back up at the Italian.

“Both myself and another person, whoever wants to be editor, state to the staff here at the Junior Gazette why we should be chosen, and then we vote. The person with them most votes becomes editor.” He explained, wrapping his arm around Cassie’s waist. Her face turned a deep shade of red.


“Are you sure about this darling?” Amanda asked her daughter, whom was sitting in the back seat of her car. Belle was looking out the window, ignoring her mother, “Alright then,” Amanda muttered to herself.

“Yes, I’m sure,” Belle mumbled as Amanda climbed into the driver’s seat and starting the car up.


Aden pushed Sally Fletcher’s office door open roughly and walked in, a look of sheer anger on his face,

“The Coastal Junior’s getting a new editor!” He fumed, sitting down opposite Sally, she looked at him, somewhat taken aback,

“Good morning to you too, Mr. Jeffreys,” She said, looking into Aden’s eyes. She could tell that he was deeply upset,

“Angelo Rosetta,” He informed her, and watched as her face fell,

“You mean, Angelo Rosetta, the same Angelo Rosetta who tried to sell homework copies to Mr. Bartlett?” she asked, Aden suppressed a laugh, before allowing anger consume him again, “He’s not very bright,”

“I know,” Aden told the principle, folding his arms across his chest, “That’s why you need to talk to Belle Taylor. You’re one of the few she listens to,” He pleaded, Sally shook her head slowly,

“You need to realise, Aden, Belle needs time,” She said, giving him a sympathetic smile, “Ric’s suicide affected Miss Taylor deeply. She just doesn’t want to face anyone at the moment,” Aden gaped at her momentarily,

“But...” He began, but Sally raised her hand to silence him,

“Don’t you think you should be getting to your next class?” Sally asked, giving him a small smile, Aden scoffed at her and stood up from his chair, “I’m sorry!” She called out just as Aden had exited the office and slammed the door shut.


“Thankyou Miss Fletcher!” Ruby moaned to Aden as they walked along the courtyard to reach the newsroom, “Does she realise we could end up with Angelo as editor?” Aden shrugged,

“Well, to be honest, how bad can that be?” He asked her, smiling weakly,

“Hi there friends, chums, pals, buddies,” Angelo said, approaching them, Drew standing next to him, Aden and Ruby rolled their eyes as Angelo walked up to them and placed his arms around their shoulders, “So, you’re going to vote for me?” He asked,

“Not if you paid us!” Ruby shot at him, Angelo gave a forced laugh, causing Ruby and Aden give him an annoyed look,

“Well, there goes my next plan,” He said, removing his arms from their shoulders and rubbing his hands together, “Let’s go Drew,” Angelo said to the boy, snapping his fingers, Drew followed Angelo through the courtyard over to another Coastal Junior staff member.

“Is there no way we can get Geoff to stand against him?” Aden asked, Ruby grinned at him devilishly,

“We’re working on it,” She told him.


Inside the school, Annie was standing outside the boys change room, a pair of jeans in her hand, giving the thumbs up to random people who had begun gathering around,

“But I don’t want to be editor!” Geoff moaned from inside the change room, Annie grinned at everyone,

“Geoff, let me tell you what I've got out here,” She called into the change room, “I've got a nomination form for the editor election, I've got five of my best friends waiting to see you when you come out, and I have you’re jeans. Let’s talk,” She said powerfully, grinning to a group of eager looking girls.

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Thanks xknomex :)

The following chapter is not my greatest work, it's the result of having watched documentaries about Joan of Arc and British history one after the other and lack of sleep. It is terribly writen as well.

WARNINGS: Off-colour humor at the start involving former British monarchs, Joan of Arc and unnamed teachers of Summer Bay High. A few swear words.

-Chapter Ten-

The Gaz; Part Two

“...And that is why I decided to run for editorship of The Coastal Junior,” Geoff announced from a podium standing in front of Belle’s desk, he was glairing angrily at Ruby and Aden, “I wanted to know that Belle’s legacy will carry on, that all she wanted to do with the Coastal Junior will be done properly. A vote for me this afternoon is a vote for a better weekly paper, with the possible addition of three more double-sheets. Um, also, a vote for me is a vote for a bi-weekly special edition of The Coastal Junior!” He finished, looking around the room at the staff, everybody but Aden and Ruby had uncaring looks on their faces, a loud clap erupted from somewhere in the middle of them,

“Well done Geoff!” Angelo said, pushing his way through the crowd and up to the podium; he pushed Geoff out of the way roughly, “Can I just say how much I respect you for doing this, running for editorship in the face of your personal crisis?” Angelo asked the blonde boy, grinning; Geoff looked at him confused,

“What crisis?” Geoff asked him, again, Angelo grinned, a look of fake sympathy in his eyes,

“What crisis, he asks. Is this man brave or not?” He called out to the crowd before placing his arm around Geoff’s shoulder, “To think of all the terrible, tragic and even disgusting things going on in your private life. It’s amazing how well you’re coping!” Angelo said, a tone of fake care in his voice, Geoff blinked slowly,

“Nothing’s happened in my private life!” Geoff almost shouted, his face turning bright red as people in the crowd began to whisper, “I don’t even have a private life!”

“I agree, nothing happened,” Angelo said sarcastically, before turning his attention back to the crowd, “I believe all twenty people are lying, how can they be sure it was him? It was dark; he was wearing a mask,” He told the crowd, by now Geoff’s face was a deep crimson,

“He’s lying,” Geoff mouthed to the crowd. The doors of the newsroom flung open and Annie rushed in, a notepad in her small hands,

“Aden!” She whispered loudly, “Ruby!” The two turned around and saw her; she looked deeply upset and flustered.

“What?” Aden asked her from the crowd, she motioned with her hands for them to come over to her. Aden grabbed Ruby’s shoulder tightly with his left hand and pulled her over towards the darkroom, where Annie was standing.

“What is it Annie?” Ruby asked the young girl, concerned, Annie took a deep breath,

“You know Emma and Rebekah?” The young girl asked the two older teenagers, Aden shook his head,

“Were they the ones who got suspended for painting their arts teacher as Joan of Arc?” Ruby asked, Annie nodded,

“What’s so wrong with that?” Aden asked, leaning on a desk, Ruby chortled softly,

“She was burning at the steak,” She giggled, before coughing, Aden raised his eyebrows in amazement, “They also did a sculpture of their history teacher as Mary, Queen of Scots,”

“I’m afraid to ask what that was like,” Aden chuckled as Ruby grinned,

“It was very realistic, had her head in a basket and all,” Aden let out a loud laugh, drawing the room’s attention to him,

“It was nothing!” He shouted at them, one by one everybody turned their attention back to Angelo, “What about them Annie?” He asked, noticing Annie still had an upset look plastered across her face,

“They were sketching Miss Fletcher as Anne Boleyn – no head,” She added, causing Ruby and Aden to break into a fit of laughter, “When they overheard her on the phone with Gavin, apparently Belle’s being transferred to another school,” Aden clenched his fist tightly as the words escaped Annie’s mouth, his brows furrowed in anger and hurt, his teeth clasped together firmly,

“Aden?” Ruby asked soothingly, placing her arm around his shoulder, he brushed it off violently.

“The bitch,” He muttered under his breath before walking out of the newsroom, slamming the door loudly behind him.

“...It’s been a good, clean campaign. Except for all those nasty, vicious and seemingly true rumours about Geoff and Belle’s fish Jasper for instance,” Angelo called out, drawing peoples attention back to him, Ruby groaned before walking out of the newsroom to find Aden. “But a vote for me is a vote for shorter shifts, shorter hours and shorter words!” He finished, aloud, enthusiastic applause broke out.


“Ms. Taylor?” Aden asked, he was standing out the front of what seemed to be a mansion. A youngish, blonde women was standing in front of him, she shook her head,

“It’s Ms. Vale, actually,” She informed him, Aden muttered his apologies,

“Sorry, Ms. Vale, would it be possible for me to talk to Belle?” He asked her impatiently, the blond woman shook her head,

“I’m sorry, but Belle doesn’t live here anymore,” She told him hurriedly, before slamming the door n his face,

“What?” He called out, ringing the doorbell once again,

“Go away!” Ms. Vale yelled without opening the door, Aden sighed, deciding it was best not to cause any trouble, he turned his back on the mansion and walked away.



“Angelo,” Nicole muttered to the boy, he was sitting in the editors chair, a dull white sign reading ‘Da Boss’ placed in front of him, “Here’s the mock up of the new front page you wanted,” She told him kindly, showing him a large sheet of poster paper, on it was a deep red title reading ‘The Gaz’, a picture of Angelo was filling up most of the front page, bold black letters underneath read ‘Our New Editor’,

“I like it,” Angelo said, taking it from Nicole, “It’s got taste,” He grinned, looking dreamily at his own photograph,

“Angelo,” Geoff said, walking out of the graphics room over to the new editor, “Am I still assistant editor?” her asked, Angelo nodded,

“Of course you are,” He replied, a large smile appearing across his face,

“Then how come Drew is sitting at my desk?” Geoff asked, frustrated, Angelo chucked nervously,

“That is because I have, um,” He muttered, pausing to think, “I have promoted you to executive assistant editor,” He finished, giving a l loud sigh or relief,

“Great,” Geoff told the brunette sarcastically, “Does that mean I get to colour in the black squares of the crossword?” He asked, Angelo gave the blonde boy a pat of the back,

“Most of them,” He grinned, turning away from the frustrated boy and focusing his attention on Ruby, who was now standing on the right side of his desk,

“I don’t like the way the new paper is shaping up,” She mumbled angrily, “I don’t like the competitions, I don’t like the five line story limit and I don’t like that article about Nostradamus wandering the Earth as a ghost!” She snapped at him,

“Hey, a lot of newspapers printed that story!” He shot back, Ruby placed her hands on her hips,

“They did,” She acknowledged, Angelo grinned again, “But we’re the only one doing the interview!” She screamed before walking out of the newsroom,

“Must be the twenty-eighth day of the month,” He whispered to Drew.


“Hey Rubes,” Aden said as she sat down next to him on the footpath, he placed his arm around her shoulder,

“We’re surviving – just,” She told him, “We’re still here,” she placed her head on his shoulder,

“Some of us,” He told her coldly, moving his shoulder so she moved her head off of it,

“Annie told me she saw you hanging out with Axle Hay and his gang,” She told him, concerned, “And Lucas told me you were sent to see Sally twice today,”

“So what?” He asked her callously, turning away from his friend,

“This is the stuff that almost got you kicked out of Summer Bay High last time,” She said, moving closer to him, “And you’ll be kicked out now if you’re not careful.”

“Ruby, to be perfectly honest, I don’t give a fu*k what happens to me,” He mumbled, Ruby placed her arm around the boy again,

“Do you remember that story we wrote last week for Belle, about the boy who did a brilliant project about the mating cycle of the Spanish Mackerel, only he failed because of bad handwriting? The article Belle rejected?” She asked the young boy, he nodded,

“What about it?” He asked her angrily,

“Angelo wants to run it,” She said, standing up, “Which proves one thing: Angelo Rosetta has a commitment to serious journalism,” She told the boy before walking into the building again, she glanced back and watched as the boy stood up and walked away from the newsroom,

“Whilst he’s running the paper, I’m not coming back,” He called out to the young girl as he reached the corner of the street. Ruby felt her heart plummet to her toes as the last four words sank in.

NEXT CHAPTER: How will the Coastal Junior cope now Aden has left the team. Will Aden be able to locate Belle, and what causes Nicole to be almost fired from the team?

A/N: I know, there's a lack of Belle, but I promise, she has a lot of great scenes next chapter, in my opinion, they are very emotional.


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