Appearing in the story
Lena got up happy. She was feeling this way for weeks now and there could be only one possible explanation, she was in love.
It all started the day of the dance. She wasn’t really sure if she would go or not,it was her first high school dance and naturally she was excited but she didn’t want to go and do something stupid that she would be remembered by for all the coming years. But that morning Brenton called. Brent was her friend, they knew each other for years and he wanted to hang out today. He asked to meet at this local hangout and Lena said yes.
They didn’t usually go there, but she knew the place. One time her parents were having drinks with aunt Hannah and uncle Junior and they went there.
She, her twin sister Maja and her cousin Freddie played a chess tournament and Maja beat them hands down and went to goof off at the bathroom.
This time she hoped would be even more fun. She hoped there would be no chess involved, she wasn’t bad at it, but it wasn’t how she wanted to spend her day today. To her great delight it seamed Brent had other plans as well.
He showed up with flowers. Lena had never before received flowers so she was a little lost. “Thanks Brent.” She said and smiled and noticed Brenton was nervous. That was good because she felt her own heart beating like crazy.Brent tried to smile but it didn’t quite work, and he was growing pale, even paler then usual. “Look Lena… There is something I have been meaning to tell you… I have no idea why I waited so long…” He took a deep breath, straightened his back and then he started speaking really fast. “I want you to come to the dance with me tonight. I really like you, and there is none I would rather take.” He stopped and looked at her. Lena had no idea how she looked, she knew she was just really, really surprised. “It’s cool if you don’t want to.” He said casually after her moment of silence. He even tried to smile.
And finally words came back to Lena and she managed to say them without stuttering: “I would love to. If you really mean it…” He smiled. This time it was a real smile, a classic Brenton Frail smile, the one she knew her whole life. “Of course I mean it.” He said nothing else but leaned in and kissed her on the lips. Her first kiss ever.
She hurried home to get ready. Luckily she had some nice clothes prepared, and had already informed her parents about the dance. “Why the change of heart?” Her father asked as she rushed to get ready,: “I thought you said you weren’t going…” Even Maja gave her a quizzical look. Usually she shared everything with her twin but there was no time. She shrugged. “I just want to go…” Her mother seamed to understand. “Leave her alone, she needs to get ready, hurry up Lena.”
They went in a limo with Bradley’s brother Cecil and his date, Vanessa Mayor.
It was a great night, Brent seemed to dance quite good and Lena wondered how she never knew that about him. He danced with her the whole night, even though she wasn’t a really good partner, she had never danced before, and felt too awkward but he didn’t seam mind and she was so happy. “Does this mean you are my boyfriend now?” She asked during a slow dance, her head on his shoulder. “Are you asking me to be?” He asked softly. “I guess I am.” She said and smiled. “Then yes!” He said loudly and spun her around on the dance floor and they both laughed, in fact Brenton’s smile never left his face, the whole night.
Brenton’s brother Cecil was crowned prom king and they applauded him together. Everything was so perfect, later in school a lot of people told them they were the cutest couple at the dance and they were to this day, still together.
As she walked to the bathroom Lena noticed the door of the nursery were open, which was weird, nobody slept there anymore since Delores and Nandini moved to Yvonne’s old room.
“What are you doing there?” She asked Delores who was standing next to the toy stove Lena could never remember using. “Making breakfast!” Della exclaimed. “A vanilla muffin, I could make you one too if you want!” “No thanks, I’ll check what we have downstairs…” Lena said and left the room. She couldn’t believe Delores was cooking, that made her feel a little guilty she never bothered to learn to make anything herself… Mum was offering to teach them all the time.
She went to school alone, Maja had her first period today, which explained why she was so moody last few days, and mum let her stay home. When Lena got back she was in the kitchen on the phone. She frowned. She could have gone to school…
She was about to tell her she was being ridiculous when their father literally ran inside. “Hey girls! Great news!” He yelled at them out of breath. She and her twin sister exchanged a look before their father continued speaking. “I have been promoted, starting Monday I will be your new science teacher!” He was smiling broadly but she and Maja only looked at each other, this time with dread.
“You do realize this is a disaster?” Lena told Maja later when they were alone in their room. Maja sighed. “Of course I do. But what can we do? He already took the job… It’s inevitable.” “We must think of a strategy! I propose we all pretend we don’t know each other. We don’t know him, he doesn’t know us. We’ll speak with him, tell him that.” Maja sighed again. “I guess that would be the best… But it’s still a disaster…Everyone will know… And if someone doesn’t know Freddie will make sure to tell them.” “You are right…” Lena admitted. “We are doomed…”
The next morning Lena walked in on her sister literally licking her bowl of cereals. “What are you doing?” She asked raising an eyebrow at Maja. “I had some milk left… Couldn’t get in any other way…” She spoke defensively and Lena just sighed. “Whatever… So it’s cereals for breakfast?” “Nope, mum is making waffles, I just couldn’t wait…”
Mum did indeed make waffles and Lena ate alone, dad and her little sisters were still asleep and mum had chores to do before going to work so she said she didn’t have time to eat. Her mum worked at the spa and that meant working even on weekends.
When she got back to the room she shared with her sister Maja was in her lab coat doing some experiments on her chemist table. “What are you doing? Something for school?” “Nah, making a little experiment just for may sake…” From past experience Lena knew that for her sister that meant playing a prank on someone and just hoped that this prank wasn’t meant for her… She still remembered how thanks to her sister she dyed her hair blue… “Did you think of anything to tell dad?” She asked but her sister was absorbed in what she was doing and just shook her head. Lena sighed, as usual everything fell on her…
She found her father in his bedroom and came straight up to him, not even knowing what she would say. “Look dad…” She started as she came up to him. He stood there patiently looking at her, as she was about to say the most interesting thing in the world, that is how he always looked at her, and her sisters . It threw her out of balance and for a bit she hesitated, she felt terrible for doing this but a lot of things are at stake… “I’m very excited for your new job, and so is Maja of course.” That’s right, I’ll drag her in to this too, Lena thought maliciously. “But we are a little worried how things will play out… For us… I mean…” “You are afraid I’ll embarrass you girls?” Her father asked. “Well…No…Maybe…I…”Lena stumbled. “Maybe we could just pretend like we don’t know each other when we’re all in class?” She sounded stupid to herself even but her father smiled. “Of course, here I’m your father, pumpkin, but in class I’m gonna treat you like everyone else. Both you, your sister, and your boyfriend.” He said and winked at her and Lena felt her insides go cold, how did he know about that? But he said nothing more, just smiled.
The rest of that Saturday they spent cleaning around the house, she and Delores did the dishes, she was surprised how good Della was at housework, she was also an honor roll student, just the perfect little child. Maja was working in the garden and Nandini somehow got off, because she had a lot of homework, and dad, being a teacher himself, put schoolwork ahead of everything else.
Lena wanted to tell him that Della probably had as much homework to do, since they were in the same class after all and it was Nan’s fault for not doing it in time but she didn’t want to be a snitch so she kept her mouth shut and did the dishes as she was told thinking how her mum would see right trough this if she were here.
By the time mum got back however they were done and she got to making them peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, she said it was a reward but Lena knew she would have done it anyway. She went up to her room to call her sister to eat. When she came in however she noticed her sister was red as a tomato and was nervously pacing around.
“Oh Lena! Close the door!” She yelled at her as soon as Lena came inside. “You’ll never believe what happened! You know that dance that’s coming up on Tuesday?” Lena nodded. Of course she knew, she and Brent were already talking about going together, the perks of having a boyfriend… “Well… Jacob called! She wants me to come with him!” Lena smiled happily, she was so glad for her sister.
But then she remembered something and asked: “What about Aenys?” Maja frowned slightly. “What about him?” Lena shrugged. “Nothing.”
She always though her sister would end up with her silly little friend Aenys who would often come to their house on his bike to hang out with her sister, they had all those sill games, like taking the helmet his mother made him wear whenever he was on the bike and playing their were race car drivers and the armchairs in the living room would be their cars… But things change, her sister was no longer that goofy girl, and if she liked Jacob, even better for her because he obviously liked her too.
When they got downstairs dad and Della were already eating, mum must have still been in the kitchen and Nan was probably doing her homework so they started eating without them. Dad informed them that tonight they were all going to aunt Alyssa’s. Neither Lena or Maja were happy about this since it was a Saturday night after all but they did as dad said…
When they got there Lena was glad she wore her nice clothes because so did everyone else, it wasn’t just them and aunt Alyssa as she thought, most of the family was there, even uncle Harry and his new wife Rhaenys.
She however somehow ended up talking to her cousin Jerod. He was a firefighter, and he was so muscular and she couldn’t not comment on that he laughed and they ended up talking about his exercise regime.
“There is nothing to eat! Only some stupid stew mum made last night!” Lena heard Nan shout at Della before entering the kitchen. It was a Sunday morning and she was still not fully awake, the upstairs bathroom was occupied so she went downstairs to get a glass of water. “We can make muffins.” Della said in her calm voice. Even though the doors were closed she could see the sweat smile she must have had on her little face. “Come I’ll teach you.” She opened the door and Nan ran out almost crashing into Lena. She only frowned and continued running past her. “Well good morning to you too!” Lena yelled at her and Della scolded her before following her twin upstairs. “Don’t yell Lena, it’s too early!”
About an hour later when she had already eaten, brushed her teeth and took her shower that she walked in on her sister about to drink some suspicius looking liquid from a glass vial. “Maja! Stop! What the hell are you doing!” She yelled when she saw he but her sister payed her no mind and swallowed the whole bottle in one large gulp.
“What the hell?” She shrieked even loudly. “Relax.” Maja said calmly. “It’s one of my experiments, and I’m the test subject.” “Even worse! You could have poisoned yourself right now.” Maja only smiled at her. “There is nothing in it that could be poisonous.” Just a second later Lena had to pinch her nose because the smell that filled her room became unbarable. Maja just looked at her and her smile spread even more, her whole face lighting up. “It’s working! It’s working!”
She sighed loudly. Maja ran to the bathroom to take a shower singing all the way, dad told her he was going to drop on some money to a charity organization, he did this every Sunday and then he was going to the school to host a “welcoming lectures” which was not obligatory and was open to all of his future students. He was so excited that she didn’t have the heart to tell him that no student she knew would come to a non obligatory class on Sunday, and that not even she Maja would come and instead went to help mum around the garden.
As a reward today mum made cookies. Lena ate them with Nan who told her all about her day, from making muffins with Delores, to going to the bookstore to buy some school supplies and running into their cousin Sabina.
When she had told herself she had enough cookies Lena went upstairs and found Della in their bedroom using Maja’s chemist table. “Maja said I could!” She said before Lena could even open her mouth. She had nothing to say, Della was even wearing a lab coat, and protective goggles. She had followed all of dad’s safety protocols so she slipped outside to her parents bedroom to phone Brent. There she ran into Maja who was on the phone with Aenys so she had to leave again.
When she finally found enough peace and quit to talk for an hour with her boyfriend, whom she was going to see in school tomorrow, she went outside to the thing she enjoyed the most, even after all these years.