Secondhand Sidekick

Prologue: I'm Not Good With Introductions

If you've opened this book looking for a story filled with action, adventure, magic, and me as the main character destined to save the world from a great evil, then let me tell you right now that this isn't the book for you. In fact, you're probably better off slamming the cover shut and throwing this into the darkest, most cobweb-infested corner you can find and try something more suited to your tastes—perhaps something with dragons?

There is a hero in this story, but that hero isn't me. No, that title goes to my best friend, Ailee. She's the one who went through a mirror, saved an empire, learned magic—all the stuff we normal people can only experience in our imaginations. Yeah, she's lived that—jealous yet? Just imagine how I feel.

If you want a description of her, think of a blonde version of Snow White—the fairest in the land. Or maybe Sleeping Beauty would be a better analogy—good at everything.

Me? I flip the bird at anyone who looks at me the wrong way, and clean fish tanks for a living. Not that there's anything wrong with fish, but my cute little guppies just don't compare to being able to blast fireballs out of my fingertips.

Now, don't go thinking Ailee is some perfect, pretty, petite, perfect princess, because she's not. Her parents divorced when she was 11, her grades have always been crap, and her pickiness when it comes to the male species kept her out of the dating-scene until we hit college—and even then it's not like she dated anybody from this world, anyway.

A big difference compared to me, who has a large family with luvvy-dovey parents, not "smart" per say but plenty of wit, and lost her virginity during homecoming behind the bleachers while experimenting with weed for the first (and last) time with her best guy-friend. Probably a good thing I don't remember much of that night.

Jack and Jill went up the hill to smoke some marijuana

Jack got high and dropped his fly and said, "Do you wanna?"

Jill said, "Yes!" and dropped her dress and now they're having fun

Good thing we weren't Jack and Jill or we would have a son!

Yeah, that was cheesy and crude, so sue me. That's pretty much how my first time went and I'm not gifted with crazy-good musical skills.

Call me what you want: whiner, bitch, idiot, freak, etc.—I'm not here to tell you what you want to hear, I'm just giving you my view on things. Don't misunderstand, I'm not trying to play myself off as the sad, ugly little duckling, nor am I trying to give you the impression that Ailee is my evil step-sister who thinks she's all that. She's the hero, for gods' sake, she's anything but evil!

I don't intend to whine, but it would be a lie to say I'm not incredibly envious of Ailee, who got to explore a whole other world full of excitement and fairies and left me and everyone else behind without a word. A world where the villains are dark and sexy and want to do kinky bondage things to the female hero instead of villains who are rich and dressed in business suits and mostly concerned with their money so they can get that curly pork tail surgically removed from their fat, selfish, piggy asses.

So what if she had a super awesome, life-threatening adventure? Her grades were still crap when she got back and she takes too long to pick out a pair of shoes and when she up and disappears she makes everyone worry until they are physically sick (and that's not because the beer I had was outdated and had Anthony's germy gum fall in it, I swear).

Ailee is determined to be a fantasy-artist, illustrator, thing, and me… I want to be an actress because it's the closest I'll ever get to the fantasy-world adventure Ailee went on. I'm not bad at acting, though over-zealous quite often so I can't say I'm much good either. I'm one of those people that can actually be classified as "ordinary." I'm not depressed, but I think about death as much as any other pre-menstrual young woman, I laugh my ass off at sex jokes, and get uncomfortable on the subject of religion.

Looking at things from an outsider's point of view, I really haven't moved much from those days in elementary school when we were determined to fit in with the rest of the crowd, when being "different" was taboo. It's weird, because back then, not only did we have to be the center of the universe (each and every one of us), but we also had to be the same as everyone else.

Personally, I wonder what the hell mom was slipping in my juice box.

End Prologue