Pulling Her HEARTSTRINGS Episode 25 | Flashgist
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Pulling Her HEARTSTRINGS Episode 25

Pulling Her HEARTSTRINGS Episode 25

A story written by HAPPY



Henry ogbonna (CMILT) – Biography


😻 😽
“Thank you,” she said simply.
He nodded in reply. “You should get some rest.”
“Wait…..those men…I hate to think what they’d have done to —to me if you didn’t show up.”
He nodded again.
He noticed that her grip tightened around his hands, and her smile broadened.
Elizabeth didn’t know whether it was stupid or childish, or whether it was the rebellious feeling, but somehow she had a thing for this man, and she never felt this way before.
Was this love at first sight?
She didn’t know.
Yet she liked the feeling.”You were watching me when I came into the bar,” she said.
For one, George didn’t know she noticed him.
“Mmm, what are you doing here? Where did you come from?”
She giggled a nice sound that brought his eye to her shapely lips.
“I think I owe you an explanation considering you saved my life. But first tell me. What were you thinking when you watched me?”
Blankly he stared at her, not knowing where she was going to with this.
Of course she didn’t expect him to lay it all up front, now did she?
Her fingers trailed it’s way up his arm to the base of his neck.
She was seducing him.
“Did you think of how to buy me a drink, work some charm, get me into a bed somewhere? Did you take one look at me and found me attractive? Did you —”
“Stop it, I don’t think this is right,” he held her hands from stroking him, “we’re strangers.”
She giggled again. “That’s not a no-no is it? What’s your name?”
“George,” he replied husky, because the things her fingers did to him played with his senses.
“I’m Elizabeth, and I’m willing,” she replied.
There was the shy air around her that drew him on, so that when she kissed him lightly, he took it and made it his.
They’d made love, and for them both it was a new and welcome feeling.
They stayed together for months, even though Hannah burned with jealously and hatred each time she saw them together.
Search from Primrose was on for her, and she knew her time was almost up.
So when George found out who she really was, he was hurt, because he loved her so much.
She stayed long enough to have their child, and she left.
On returning to the palace, the Queen and King said it was all a misunderstanding. She really was their child, they’d performed an invirto fertilization operation and planted the baby in another woman’s womb.
Elizabeth married the old earl.
She had kids.
But she never forgot her first love and never for once stopped thinking of her baby daughter, the product of their love.
Finally George accepted that it was wishful thinking. Elizabeth was never coming back for him or their child.
Eventually he married Hannah at the insistence of his mother who claimed the child needed a mother.
It was a waste of time.
Hannah never had a child.
Neither could she accept Elizabeth’s own who was a constant reminder of how much George loved her mother.
“Hotel? Sounds tempting, but I’ll pass. Busy day,” I said into the phone.
Sandia whined.
Her whines irritated the hell out of me. Who gave her the frigging right to pick up a phone, call me up and suggest a session of sheets-rolling “because she misses me”?
Laughing to myself, I shook my head at her dumbness.
” Okay, okay, I’ll just set this straight. You were an hourie, get that? Like a ‘one-hour’ stand. However you got my number doesn’t matter. But don’t ever flick your fingers to Punch in my number and dial my line, hear?”
Now it was her cries.
How she really loved me.
How it hurt her that I could say something like that.
How I’d broken her heart.
Tired of hearing the same chorus I hear almost every time, I hung up.
Phew…that was fun!
Right now I’m sitting at a desk in my room, and tapping a pencil to my favorite tune yet: Magic.
And waiting for my favorite person to show up.
Mr Murrow, that’s our stats teacher sure knows how to earn himself haters with his tough equations.
Luckily I’m a bright guy.
A knock came on the door.
When I opened it Umbria stood on the other side wearing her hair up in her usually ponytail, and loose fitting plain grey tee-shirt and black ripped skinny jeans that were faded at pressure points.
She hung a backpack.
And she held that dreaded clipboard that contained lists of my to dos like I’m some dumb kid that needs guidance before he could walk.
First thing I did was to grab the clipboard and fling it aside on the floor inside.
“Hey!!!!” she yelled and widened her eyes at me.
“You’re welcome,” I replied and walked back inside leaving the door open for her to come in if she willed.
I’m mad at her.
Perched on swivel stool, I watched her storm in, pick up the board and march in front of me, tapping her right foot rapidly on the floor.
“What was that for?”
“How can you show up holding that damned clipboard in my face when you know you’ve made me mad? What, are you gravitating your offence?”
“Offence? What have I done?” she asked in a high pitched voice.
“First you stayed away the whole of yesterday, and today you just vanished. You didn’t tell me you left for chem class.”
She bowed her head, then raised it up and inhaled. “You were busy. And you don’t except me to follow you everywhere?”
“Uh, yeah? Technically that’s your job. You’re the one who rescued the clipboard,” I said.
She stared at it, then at me. “OK, fine. I’m sorry I didn’t come to interrupt your oh-so-serious conversation with Willa just ’cause of a class you never seem interested to attend,” she snapped.
Whoa, why’s she yelling now? I’m the one who’s supposed to be mad here.
“Never seem interested to attend? Okay, where’s your calculus homework?”
“In my bag. Why?”
“Bring it out. I remember you once told me you had a problem with calculus, so I’m guessing you haven’t done it.”
That’s an incident I won’t forget. Hell, I almost never forget any incident between me and her. It’s like they’re always there.
Her cheeks flushed as she brought it out.
Almost any expression suited her; happy, puzzled, excited, flustered, sad; although I wouldn’t want to see her sad, and angry. Like now she was both angry and flustered as she slammed the books on my desk, and it had her cheeks flushing in a bright pink colour that made her look like some porcelain doll. Cute.
“It’s not like you’re going to get it. If you think you can, then I’m Albert Einstein. I’ve been trying it since I returned from school and can’t seem to get the hang of it.”
Chuckling, I just used the pencil to scribble some workings on a rough sheet of paper.
Then I showed it to her.
“So wha’d’ya think, Albert Einstein?” I mocked with a smirk at her show of pure surprise and disbelief.
“Apologize now, and I’ll take you on the steps.”
Author Happy©
I don’t know exactly what I’m apologizing for, but I did because there’s no other way I’d get the homework done.
It sure took me by surprise, but as he’d told me before, he was a whiz at calculus.
What other thing’s he hiding under all that proud Playboy act? I wondered.
Funny enough, this was another ace in qualities of Oscar that have me drooling for him against my will.
When I came in, and stood at the door, I heard his conversation on phone probably with one of his side chicks.
That brought the realization of what a fool I’ve been! Falling for a player.
To think I should have learned my lesson after being taught thrice.
Pathetic girl, real pathetic.
I found myself watching his profile as he droned on about the steps and formulas to use in the equation. His perfect brows furrowed in concentration, his eyes narrowed on the book, his aristocratic nose, his perfectly sculpted lips.
Never near my class except in dreams.
How? How on earth did this happen? How on earth did he know the single string to pull to loosen the tangle of strings I bound my heart in?
Involuntarily my eyes went to a guitar at a spot of his room. Then to his fingers. And finally to his eyes which were watching me.
“You get?” he asked.
“Huh? Oh! Yeah, yes I do. Thank you,” I replied, praying he didn’t catch me staring.
A low chuckle preceded his words, “I get this feeling you haven’t heard an itsy bitsy of what I said. Now I’ll have to take it from the top. But tell me, what distracted you?”
Thankfully his phone ringing prevented me from replying.
The caller ID said Iggy. Another girl.
He picked it up. “Hold that thought,” he said to me.
He listened for a bit, and said, “Yeah…not possible though. We’re done.”
“Done, like through. Over. Finito.”
He was grinning as he spoke, as if he enjoyed breaking girls heart. Millions of girls he’s dated before, some had a quickie. Some might’ve been real like most of them I read about on net.
Here he was, content to break up with them over the phone!
“Hmmm, you know it really doesn’t matter whatever do. I’m hanging up right now and deleting this number.”
Before the girl could say anything he hung up.
And deleted the number.
Then he dropped it on the desk alongside two other classy phones.
“So, you were saying….?” he sat back down.
“Uhm….I’ll go get coffee or something,” I replied and hastily left the room.
I pinched my nose all the way to stop myself from feeling the wave of hurt that threatened to wash over me and drown me fully.
Now I understood how Audrey felt when she thought Victor didn’t feel a thing for her.
Or how Carl must be feeling now.
No, I’m not going to think about these things now. I’m Umbria Lee after all. I’m a strong girl. A fighter.
Noises caught my attention and I looked up to see Prince Edward pushing Diana in her wheelchair. They were smiling at something.
He was dressed casually so I’m guessing he isn’t going anywhere yet.
”Umbria!!!” Diana yelled excitedly.
An already prepared smiled was pasted on my face as they came nearer.
“Hi princess,” I said. “Your highness —”
“Just Edward, at least when informal,” he said to me.
“Oh no, I couldn’t —”
“Or Eddie, like I call him,” Diana suggested.
I laughed. “I’ll stick with Edward, thanks.”
We entered Oscar’s room because that’s where they were headed.
Oscar looked up. “Oh no, not the self-named calvary!” he groaned.
“Tun tun tun….” Edward said in a spooky theme song.
“Oscar today’s Humpty Dumpty!” Diana cheered.
Humpty Dumpty???
Oh, he stages puppets for his sister!
“Aw come on princess, seriously? What are we, five?” Edward asked making us laugh.
They made a lot of noises as they tried to settle on a choice of story.
Finally Oscar decided on a made up story about “A Stubborn Girl Who Loves Wearing Jeans, Baggy Tees, and Ponytails While Making Oscar Mad.”
I laughed at the stupid title.
And laughed some more when I discovered that it was me he referred to.
Jeez!! The initial puppet he used to represent me was so ugly like a Cinderella stepmother equivalent.
Later he changed it to another one that happened to look just like me!😲
Hanging out with these guys was so much fun!!
Diana picked up my phone to go through my gallery and I begged her not to holler that I had hundreds of Oscar’s pictures in there.
She was looking through the camera with Edward too while I arranged my books into my bag.
Oscar was out on the balcony talking to Victor.
“Umbria a minute,” Edward called.
“Who’s this?” he asked pointing at a picture I’d taken of Maggie when she wasn’t looking. It’s in the bakery. She was focused on decorating a cake with icing, and there was flour on her forehead and cheek, and icing on her nose where I’d tipped my finger. She looked cute.
“Oh, that’s Margaret. She’s my best friend. We both work at the bakery.”
He nodded quietly and studied the picture for seconds more before flipping it to the next.
Swears, I feel so damn uncomfortable returning to this slum land.
But I have to.
The girl who smoked in the alley, she was there again. I’d asked her if she knew Umbria Lee who lived around the area.
For some stupid reason she refused knowing anybody named Umbria even after I offered her money. Their stupid slum code of conduct or whatever bull!
In the end I paid her to keep quiet and she promised not to say a word.
One step at a time.
I’m sure there are people who would readily give her up for the right amount!
🏡 🏡
“Twin sister…..” I cooed on entering Audrey’s room.
She looked up from her phone and smiled.
“Hey twin sister. What’s up?”
“Oh nothing,” I sat on the bed. “Just came for the gists. What have you been up to lately? We hardly talk these days,” I said.
All because of that stupid Umbria.
She laughed. “Oh Jess, You know that —”
“Audrey honey, your dad’s calling,” mom said from the door.
Perfect timing!
“Oh, coming! I’ll be right back Jess,” she said and dashed off, leaving her phone.
Thanks dad, you always work out for me!
Quickly I picked up the phone, a peripheral glance showing that she was chatting with Victor. They’re close and I never knew. Before Audrey and I were close even though we differed, but since Umbria came it’s Umbria this, Um that. Girls please don’t hurt Umbria. Umbria is not dating Oscar so leave her be! Don’t bully Umbria.
Well, let’s see now….
I quickly typed a message:
💬Um, girls moment Friday night before the COVS Boys show. Please come….😍
After that I deleted the message and cleared history.
Just then Audrey came in.
“Dad was telling me about a dress he stumbled on that would go with my eyes. Since when did he cloth shop for me?” she laughed.
“Yeah….well, gotta go now.”
“Huh, thought you wanted to talk?”
“Yeah, but I’m tired, I wanna sleep a bit. We’ll talk later. YAWN!”
She shrugged and continued chatting.
It feels so good to be back in this crazy town, where it all started.
So many memories, and I’m willing to grab them all and make them real and lasting.
I stared at the picture in my locket as I got out of the taxi.
Missed you so much love.
This time when I’m going, I’m taking you along with me.
I’m back for you!
🌉 🌆
I read the text from Audrey.
OK, it’s true.
I should reply her but that’s not really necessary.
I’d told Maggie about Prince Edward seeing her photos and she went crazy instantly.
That girl…. she’ll start dreaming now.
Night had fallen.
Still I’m unable to sleep.
A thousand and one thoughts ran through my mind and I struggled to grasp one.
Everything’s just a blundering blur in my head except the clear face of Oscar when he looked at me today while we played puppet.
Drawing a cake and colouring will definitely get him out of my head.
I brought out my big sketchpad and began to draw.
When I finished, I saw that I’d not sketched a cake, but his face.
I ripped it to shreds.
Darn it!!!R

Time for work had gone, today I’m super late to the bakery which is so unusual.
Ever since Umbria told me about Prince Edward, I’d spent the night browsing him, staring at his photos, and dreaming up cool happily ever afters that featured him and I as the lead roles.
God, I love him!!!
Just like Umbria was infatuated with Osos of The COVS when we were young.
Sighing, I chided myself and stopped me from reading a whole book into what can’t even be classified as a paragraph. I should stop making a mountain out of a molehill.
Still, a girl’s dreams are all she has to hold on dearly to.
When I got into the bakery, Louisa’s glare followed my every move until I stood behind the counter dressed in an apron and a white Cook cap.
“You’re damn late Maggie. What were you doing, screwing your pillow?”
It’s official; Louisa is crazy! Saying something as stupid as that.
“Are you like giving me an insight into what you were actually doing last night? You know you’re cheap Louisa. Just because you don’t go around playing hoochie mama with Slutcy and her gang doesn’t make you any different from them,” I replied calmly as I got out cakes and pastries and set them up.
The counter was sparkly clean.
Umbria! She probably did it before leaving for school. I miss her so much these days, but still I’m happy for her.
Louisa scoffed. “You bitching whore! You and your crazy friends are the ones fucking about!” she yelled.
I just ignored her. After all, I’ve got things to do and think about.
The bell jingled, signalling that someone stepped into the bakery so I looked up, ready to attend to the person. It was Lucy. What’s she doing here? She hardly goes around in the day.
“Lucy? How may I help you?”
“Just wrap up hot doughnuts topped with icing and fruit shavings for me, and a cup of yoghurt to go with. I’m feeling’ extravagant today.”
I laughed. “Did you ‘hit the jackpot’ last night with a nigger?” I asked as I wrapped her order in a foil wrap.
She winked at someone behind me, and when I turned around it was Carl stepping out of the storeroom looking super haggled with bags under his eyes and his dark skin kind of dry and pale. Could he be sick? And why’s Lulu winking at him?
“Yo act likka Mary Margaret, yet yo talk like the rest of us,” she said.
“I’m a Queenslander,” I shrugged and handed her parcel to her bagged in a BRUCE’S BAKES AND BREAKFAST bag.
“Yeah. Amma say I got the lucks yesterday. Which reminds me, tell Dumbria she better hav’ha wits about her. I don’t like her but Queens girls stick together. Bitch’s out for her.”
She walked out after a glance at Carl.
I rounded in in him. “You knocking Lulu, right?” I asked him.
In response he ignored me and set up a tray for a customer who’d placed an order while I spoke to Lucy.
“Carl I know you’re hurt because Ummy doesn’t return your feelings, but you should just understand and let go because —”
“Maggie I don’t know what you’re talking about, but y’all should just leave me alone to live my damned life,” he yelled and stomped out.
Maybe I should allow him let out some steam, because he’s still our Friend. He needed us now more than ever. And that includes serving his customer.
The completed breakfast tray was meant for table two. The guy seated there was dressed in dark clothes that visibly spelled ‘filthy rich!’ He looked like he was trying to blend in, but on the contrary he stood out. His head hung low as he fiddled with his phone.
“Cream coffee and a serving of 🍡 fruit kebab. Enjoy,” I said brightly and dropped the tray in front of him. My nose caught a whiff of his perfume; a heady, expensive Smell that filled my senses. Whoever this guy is, he’s very wealthy. I found myself wanting to see his face and wondering what exactly he was doing here in Queensland.
Not being the nosy type, I shrugged it off.
“Sounds like a treat,” he spoke and gazed at his food. The black baseball cap he wore didn’t allow me see his face.
”It sure is. Bon apetite,” I added.
“Hold on, just a minute. Tell me your name.”
When he said that his head Tipped upwards to look at me. I saw the mould of his lips and tip of his pointed nose.
“It’s Margaret, but most people just call me Maggie or Mag because Margaret sounds too…..churchy.”
He chuckled a bit. “And you don’t like church?”
“Oh, don’t get me wrong, I do. Guess I should say it’d too formal. Formality kills me.”
“I can relate.”
“You can?”
“Yeah. Join me for breakfast Maggie,” he said.
“I Couldn’t I’m working,” I said. Still I was trying to get more detail about his face that would hint me who he was. He had a cool deep voice that quite and soft spoken, and his intonation or accent…..I’ve heard it before many times. I just can’t place my finger on it.
“I’ll talk to your boss,” he said, making me laugh, but he was serious.
Although I’d discouraged him, he ended up meeting Bruce B who hastily accepted, especially when the guy brought out a wad of dollars. I felt bad, twas as if he was buying me off. But as we talked, I discovered that he was actually quite intelligent and also had a sense of humor.
As he went out he held my hand, and I let him. After all, it’s not like he’s coming here again or something.
“Can I have your number?” he asked.
Uh oh. Bad call.
“Uhm, I don’t really think —”
“Please?” he asked squeezing my hand.
Nodding, I called it out for him.
“You didn’t tell me your name,” I said.
“It’s Ed.”
“And why are you wearing the cap? Don’t you want me to see your face?”
He laughed. “You will, if you agree to go out with me Saturday.”
I gaped. A date? With a rich guy! Oh, how I’d give anything for it to be Prince Edward asking me out right now. But Ed is cool too. He’s nice, and I like him I think.
“Can I think about it?”
“Yeah, wouldn’t want to rush you. I’d be happy if you said yes though.”
He kissed my cheeks and walked to a navy blue Bentley, climbed in the driver’s seat and ignited it. He reversed out of the curb and waved to me.
I waved back, feeling happy.
Umbria I’ve got a juicy gist for you.
Heh heh heh.
Things happen at home too.
When I stepped back into the bakery for work, Louisa glared at me, while Bruce B grinned widely.
“Margaret Margaret….” he laughed, “You should bring your boyfriend around more often.”
Damn, this dollar loving man!
“Thank God for Victor, I got eighty two percent on the homework. I’d have gotten a zero if I were to tackle it myself,” Audrey said and sighed, “I love that guy! So Um, what’d you score?” she asked me as she came to my seat. We were all in the general class after receiving the sheets.
“I got a ninety six!” I exclaimed as I stared unbelievably at my calculus homework sheet score.
“Wow girl! And you said you didn’t know calculus,” Audrey glared at me.
“Actually I don’t. Osos helped me. He explained every step and had me do it on my own.”
“Wowww! That is so romantic Umbria! Did you, you stayed at his house and he taught you?”
With a shrug I replied, “More or less.” A smile curled my lips as I remembered the fun we had yesterday. Even after Edward and Diana left, Oscar and I chatted for a while. Although most times we always ended up arguing because he’d unknowingly say something hurtful to me, and I’ll try to cover it by being quiet. And then he’ll scowl that I’m deliberately ignoring him, and I’ll lunge into strings of defense.
All the same, being with him was wonderful.
“You’re smiling?”
“Huh, no I’m not.”
“Yes you Are. Been at it the whole time. Did anything happen ‘part from studying?” she asked in a low suspicious tone.
“Nuh uh Aud, you’re crazy sometimes. Gotta get to class now. Catch you later,” I was referring to the girls moment before the show.
“Yeah, see you in the evening,” she replied.
When the bell struck for lunch, I packed my books into my locker and walked to the cafeteria alone, feeling super hungry because I didn’t have chance for breakfast.
On spotting the bakery’s new delivery van outside, I hurried in to see if I could catch a moment with Carl.
Instead it was our substitute guy, the one who filled in for us at times. Disappointed, I gave him a little wave.
The Boys weren’t at their table. I guess they were rehearsing. Audrey sat with Jessica and the girls. I sighed, not knowing what to do. Oscar had always sponsored my lunch whether I wanted it or not, and before, when we were cat-and-dog, he usually did it to get on my nerves. That was the one thing I always allowed him to win. I end up eating.
No lunch for me today.
Guess I’ll just turn around and —
“Hey babe, looking for someone?” he asked smirkingly.
And I felt my whole being turn mush in front of him as they puddled at his feet.
When I didn’t say a word he guided my elbows back into the cafeteria, asking about my calculus score, to our table and sat me down, then went and placed our orders.
“I got us different lunches so that I’ll pick from yours as well,” he set our trays down.
“You don’t say,” I replied, making my voice as normal as possible, when definitely was an effort cause my heart was thumping in my chest. My eyes flitted about, landing on pieces of him and darting away.
He laughed. Mine was a bowl of chips🍟 and his was whipped up salad with chicken breast shavings. Mmm, yummy!
He trailed my eyes, and switched trays. I smiled up gratefully and began eating.
“So aren’t you having music practice with the boys?”
“I am. Figured you’d be hungry and might end up sleeping throughout lunchtime,” he shrugged and shoved a forkful of my chicken salad in his mouth.
I glared at him and pulled my tray to myself as he laughed.
“How thoughtful,” I said, and meant it, despite the good dose of hurt words that followed. They were something Osos would say, but now they hurt more than they ever did.
And it’s all because of this feeling called love that I’m yet to understand.
“You coming right?”
“I’ll try. I’ve lots to do and —”
I sighed. “Yeah, because I’m your PA so I gotta be there.”
“That’s one. But I just want you to show up. Else I’m not going to sing.”
For real?
I gazed into his eyes, as he stared back into mine.
His hand reached out slowly and for a second I thought he wanted to place it over mine.
Turns out he was sneaking up on my salad.
“Hey!” I yelled as he shoved it into his mouth.
I reached out for his chips bowl but he scooped it up and jumped swiftly and smoothly out of the bench across me and jogged out of the cafeteria. I forget hes in the basketball team. I made to follow him, but my grumbling stomach stopped me.
The concert in school was what everyone was talking about, and there was hardly classes for the rest of the day. So I decided to return home and get things done so as to make it in time for the girls moment and the show. Oscar wanted me to be there and I swelled with joy I was surprised I felt.
“Umbria, don’t forget okay?” Jessica said to me as I passed by the cheerleaders locker room where most girls threw pompoms and chattered about stuff.
“Okay,” I threw back.
I didn’t see their smirks and evil smiles.
There was a note stuck to the fridge with a magnet from dad:
📎Gone for therapy honey. Love ya.
I smiled and took it off.
Then I wrote on another piece of paper:
📎Might be home late; concert in school. Don’t worry ’bout me. Dinner in the heater on the kitchen table. Love you dad.
Sure enough, there was a list of chores from Hannah waiting for me: laundry, dishes, sweeping and dusting, grocery shopping with my money, stir frying veggies. If she was here, I’d have argued with her over buying groceries with my money. But she wasn’t. Better get started.
I texted Maggie to help out with shopping, and I’ll refund her when she got back. She happily agreed especially the part about the concert.
When I finally stood upright and cracked my back, a knock came and Maggie bounded into the house hefting bags of foodstuffs which she dropped on the counter.
Together we arranged each one into cabinets, all the while talking nonstop and doing a whole lot of catching ups.
“So you mean he asked you out Saturday!?” I exclaimed after she told me about her new ‘guyfriend’ Ed.
“Yeah, I didn’t reply though. He just got my number.”
“Awww…..so what about Prince Edward?”
“He’s still my love for life, but he’s way out of my league. I’m taking what I get. He’s cute, and he’s rich too.”
“Cool! Wish I was there though. And what were you saying about Carl and Slutcy?” I asked as we entered my room.
“Said sth about a bitch being out for you, but that’s just bull, you know how she talks. As for Carl we need to talk to him. Not today though, now we gotta find you a dress!”
I groaned. “And what’s wrong with my tees and jeans?”
“Everything babe, you have to look….awesome. And Maggie’s here to make that happen!”
🕦 🕚 🕥 🕦 🕚 🕥
“Whoa, Ummy! I swear Osos would drool at the sight of you, you’re gorgeous! No, simply beautiful.”
“Thanks Mag, but I won’t feel comfortable in a dress.” I pulled it off. “Or this hair.” I pulled the pins off and packed it in my ponytail. “Or this shoes.” I kicked them off.
She screamed. “What the heck Um!”
“Sorry best friend.” I grinned. “I’ll make it up to you, for the stress.”.
She huffed and watched me dress up in a new blue jeans and a baggy fuchsia tee-shirt, and blue boots👟.
She came and tied the hem of the tee-shirt to give it shape.
” Have fun okay? And video everything if possible. Wish I could come though.”
I laughed.
“And do be careful of those girls. I don’t trust them even if you say Audrey confirmed it.”
🌆 🌜 🌇
🏫 🏫 🏫
Everything’s set Umbria!
Set for your disgrace and doom.
Tiffany, Juli, Karie and Caroline did a once over, and then a twice over making sure the whole trap was set.
“Wow Jess, you’re a genius!” Caroline said.
“I know. And she’ll know too. That’ll get her to get her hands off my boyfriend!”
No matter what anybody said, Osos is mine and mine alone.
Initially I texted Umbria to meet us in the cheerleaders locker room.
From there, I’ll leave to the studio so if won’t seem I had a hand in it.
Tiffy and the girls would take care of things just fine.
“How’d I look?” I asked, showing off my short-at-the-hips red dress, and red lacy heels to match. I curled my blonde hair and painted my lips bloodred.
I termed this dressing my “Sweet Revenge”.
” Devilishly hot,” they chorused.
“You’re gonna burn Osos girl, you’re gonna rock the show!” Caro said.
“Course I am. That’s the whole point.”
Everywhere was dark and well lighted. Especially the music studio. It was big and decorated, and the stage was all set. People milled about going here or there, doing this or that.
I clutch the hand of my black satchel bag which contained my phone and a few bucks for transport and made my way to the girls locker room. Voices from inside confirmed they were there.
I opened and stepped in to see Tiff, Caro, Karie and Juli all dressed classically; colourful minidresses and matching heels, beautiful hairstyles.
And here I am, plain Jane.
“Hey girls.”
“Hi Umbria,” they chorused. “You made it!”
“Guess so. Where’s Audrey and Jessica?”
“They’re running late, and it’s a good thing. You’re in my hands now,” Tiffany said stepping up to me.
“What’re you talking about?”
“We got you a dress for tonight,” Caroline cut in. “But it’s over at the janitor’s. Come on. Jess and Aud will meet us there.”
Unsure, I followed them.
I waved to Willa and Darcy as they entered the studio and they watched me puzzled.
I’ve never been to this part of the school. And the deeper we got, the darker and spookier it became.
“This is weird girls, I’ll just meet y’all later when Audrey’s here,” I backed off.
“What, she’s like your protector? Take a chill pill babe, and loosen up!” Jul said.
We got to the janitor’s, and it was filled with cobwebs and brooms and mops.
“Knew this was stupid,” I said. “I’m outta here!”
“Not so fast!” Tiffany exclaimed and pushed me further inside, making me stumble. Before I got my bearings and ran after them, they slammed the door. And that pulled at a rope connected to huge paint cans and confetti in storage cabinets.
They all came down, pouring on me and casting different colours on me.
I screamed.
And I felt like crying.
The paint entered my mouth and eyes, and when I tried to wipe it off it blinded me. Blindly, I reached for the doorknob and shook it, hoping for someone to come to my rescue.
It’s already late, and I haven’t seen Umbria anywhere.
Maybe she’s running late because she told me she’d be busy. It’s not like it’s a requirement for her to be there, but I had this crazy surprise for her I’m sure will piss the hell out of her.
With a smile on my face, I replayed Justin Timberlake’s “Can’t Stop The Feeling” again while the guys prepped themselves to go on stage.
If Umbria doesn’t show up, I don’t think I’m singing with them.
There was this terrible feeling something’s wrong, but I shrugged it off.

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