Anna sighed and pulled her jacket a little tighter, now that night was falling it was starting to get cold. She looked around again and saw nothing, this entire thing was just so stupid. They really expected her to stand out here in a field of rocks until what? One of them chose her? How could a rock choose someone? If it weren’t for her parents insistence, she would have just skipped the entire thing. She had heard stories about this place since she was a child, how it signalled adulthood, as a child it all seemed wonderful and magical, now it just seemed stupid. Anna picked up a rock at random and turned it over in her hands, feeling the cold, smooth surface. She could just take this one and leave, no one would question it and no one would know. Anna dropped the stone, she would know. Anna took a deep breath, she could find a pretty rock, after all there were plenty to choose from. At least if she chose a cool one she’d leave this place with something.
Night had fallen fully, but the moon hung heavy and bright in the sky, casting everything in silver shadows. Anna wished, again, that she knew how to build a fire without anything to start it. It wasn’t cold enough to cause worry, but a fire would make the night go a little faster. Anna had given up looking through the rocks a short time before, instead she chose to sit on a large boulder and look up at the sky, away from the light pollution of the city.
Anna woke with a start, at some point she had dozed off. Clouds had covered most of the sky and blocked the light of the moon. There was a light in the distance, small and glowing a steady blue. She watched it for a few minutes, waiting for it to move, but it stayed steady. After a moment she stood and stretched, then started walking towards the light, something about it seemed inviting. As she walked closer she saw that what ever was emitting the light was lying on the ground.
Anna looked down at the glowing rock, it was about two inches across, the light was much brighter than she expected considering the size of it. She bent down and examined it a little closer, carefully she reached out to touch it, expecting her fingers to come away coated in paint or covered in slime. The rock was smooth, dry and warm to the touch. The light flared slightly brighter as her fingers moved over its surface. She picked it up and as she held it in both hands she could feel a faint tremor fluttering through it, like the heartbeat of a bird. She closed her hand over it and felt warmth spreading through her, filling her, as Anna watched her skin took on the glow until it seemed like she was bursting with light. A few seconds later the light faded but the warmth stayed behind. Anna looked down at the rock which was still glowing, though it wasn’t as bright as before. Carefully she put the stone in her pocket, she felt tired but energised and had a strange sense of being complete, as though she had been missing something, something she hadn’t even been aware of. Anna turned from where she found the stone and started to walk towards the boulder she had dozed off on, from there she would be able to find her way back to where she had been dropped off. Her father would be waiting for her, like he promised, with a thermos of hot chocolate and together they would drive home, her rock safely tucked away in her pocket.