"The tongue is like a sharp knife ... Kills without drawing blood." – Buddha
CHAPTER TWO –
There were days when I'm a morning person, and then there are days when I am not a morning person.
So imagine what its like to be me waking up at a quarter past seven on a bright Sunday morning by your ditzy, annoying, preppy fifteen year old sister.
"I can't wait for the party," Kitty – my bratty little sister – said matter-of-factly.
I snuggled deeper into the comfort and warmth of my bed and blanket, not responding. Just listening to her annoying, high-pitched voice made me want to shut her up, but she continued on with her spiel without me replying to her.
"I went out yesterday and bought this amazing outfit! I can't wait to wear it, and it's totally reserved for the party," she squealed. I peaked one eye at her to see her face bright with excitement.
Kitty looked down at me, her face void of any emotion, but her brown eyes flashed. "What are you going to wear?"
I shrugged under my sheets.
My sister's face showed disgust. A nasty scowl appeared on her face and she wrinkled her nose. "C'mon Gigi, you're not going to wear what you wore for the past events, are you?"
"Ugh! It's Nana's one-hundredth birthday, for God's sake! At least dress up more! Make an attempt to look prettier! Presentable! Gawd!" Kitty jumped from my bed and stood in front of me with her hands on her hips. "And what about your birthday present for her? Huh? You always get her lame gifts, and Nana is just too nice to say anything." She scoffed as she began to spit the words out as if there were venom in them, "Of course, she'll always turn a blind eye for you."
Thinking back to the present that I'm going to give her, well, it just made me feel better. Unlike a certain someone who was damping my already grumpy morning mood.
As for my 'dressing up' situation, it's not like that I come to a bunch of parties dressed like a slob. It's just that I never dress up. I would wear casual clothes, like a simple summer dress or a pair of shorts and a plain t-shirt. The most I've dressed up for a party would be when I was a little girl, and that was when everyone would choose my clothes for me. Still, I don't see what the problem is.
I changed positions under the blanket so my back was facing my sister.
I heard the door slam and I knew that Kitty was throwing one of her infamous mini tantrums in the hallway.
Stomp. Stomp. Boom. Boom. Stomp.
I checked at my alarm clock after the wild cat's footsteps faltered.
I usually slept till noon during the weekends, and because I was in my summer vacation, I wouldn't sleep until the next day, early in the morning, like at two or three. It was a bad habit, but I have trouble sleeping. Even at school nights – I wouldn't sleep until it was nearing midnight. The only good thing that comes out of it is that I don't get bags under my eyes. Not unless I stay up the next day, and have less than five hours of sleep, but even then, you could barely notice them.
I sunk into my bed and stared at the painted sky blue, high ceiling and the giant white dream catcher with matching colored feathers hanging down from it.
7:57 A.M. soon turned into 8:36 A.M.
I was bored, tired, and wide awake.
"Genie," my mother's voice came from the other side of the painted white door, "Genie? Are you awake?"
"I wish I wasn't," I called out.
A snort. "Whatever. Just get ready because the Jennings are coming over for breakfast."
The Jennings? What are they doing here so early in the morning?
I didn't have time to ask her because I heard her footsteps fading away.
The Jennings is as stuck up as my family. They're your typical boastful, gloating people that disguise their insults with comments; an exact clone of my own family.
The din was the first thing when I came to the living room.
"Genie! There you are!" Mrs. Jennings said a little too enthusiastically.
I felt a listless smile spread across my face. "Hello," I said somewhat shyly in a melodious voice. I was trying not to be a drag, as my mother would call it.
Stacey Jennings, a girl my age who also attends the same school as me, strutted up to me. A faint smile was on her face, "Hi, Genie."
The corner of my lip twitched up into another smile. "Hi," I said plainly. "So ... what's up?"
Stacey smirked. "Wouldn't you like to know?"
"Actually, I wouldn't."
My eyes roamed around my living room casually in a bored way, when really, I was checking to see if anyone else heard me, but all of the adults gathered up into a small group at a wall at the other side of the room, and their children were either sitting on the chair or standing, texting, calling, or playing games on their phone. However, when my eyes landed on Kitty, I noticed that she was looking at Stacey and me before turning her head at the other direction, pretending to be busy with her phone.
"Oh, ha, ha! Genie, you are so funny!" Stacey said loudly, a giant, fake smile took over her face.
I quirked an eyebrow. I opened my mouth to say something, but I noticed my sister walking towards us from the corner of my eye.
"Stacey!" Kitty's shrill voice filled my ears. She walked up to us with the exact same strut that Stacy just performed a minute ago. As usual, she ignored me and talked in a haughty voice with the Jennings' youngest daughter. "I'm so glad that you came! I want to show you the outfit for the party! The only problem is that I'm a bit nervous about it. I don't think that it'll go so well in the party and I don't want to be, like ..." Her dark brown eyes pointed at me. "Well, you know."
I rolled my eyes as the two girls chortled.
"Genie!" Danny, Stacey's younger brother, grinned and waved over at me, saving me from having to socialize with the two nit-wits beside me.
Danny was my favorite Jennings. Why? Because he didn't try so hard to fit in. He wasn't a poser, cough, fake, cough, like his family – or my family for that matter.
"It's cool that you can finally join us in this, um, event." Danny said.
I felt my eyebrows furrow together in confusion. "Finally?" I asked, "So you guys come here at this time every day?"
Danny chuckled and scratched the back of his head. He smiled sheepishly and I could see a faint blush run across his cheeks, "No, not everyday, just every Sunday. But your family comes over to my place sometimes. I think that this is the first time that you're joining us."
I'm pretty sure that my facial expression clearly screamed 'Confused!' I understood what he said, I was just ... oh, I don't know. Disappointed?
I looked down at the marbled floor, and sighed.
"So ..." Danny said after a pregnant pause.
I could tell that it was getting awkward for him. He didn't like the silence, and he liked to talk ... a lot.
Mother's and Mrs. Jennings' laughter filled the room, saving him from another awkward, uncomfortable silence.
"Oh, Kitty, darling! You simply must hear this!" Mother cried.
I watched silently as my sister skipped up to my mother with a smile gracing her reddish pink lips. Mother's lipstick red lips were moving, forming incoherent words.
I sighed throughout my nose and shoved my hands into my navy blue inconspicuous dress' pockets, feeling left out.
I guess that my mother's 'mom sensors' were still working, because I noticed a faint blush crept her well formed cheeks. "O – Oh! Gigi!"
Kitty craned her neck; a frown was starting to settle on her glossy lips.
"Oh, I've forgotten that you've finally decided to join us! We've gotten so used to not seeing you in these mornings ..." Mother trailed off, a nervous smile on her face. She had walked over from her spot between Kitty and Mrs. Jennings and was now standing next to me.
My eyebrows furrowed together in irritation.
Finally decided to join you? Was the woman serious? I honestly had no idea that they were even doing this! The only time my family ever had meals with the Jennings was during dinner ... guess not.
I opened my mouth to protest and correct her but my father's laughter filled up the room.
"Mr. Morris told me that the food is ready. We should head into the dinning room, now," he said.
Mr. Morris is our personal chief. He's also one of the nicest people you could ever meet, and he's also one of the staff members in my house that actually makes an effort to start a conversation and be nice to me.
In a way, he was like my family. Someone real. Someone who actually cares.
"Oh, where are the napkins?" Mrs. Jennings asked. "I have a lavish dress on, and I don't want to stain it!"
"Oh my, it is a pretty dress. Is it for the charity event?" asked Mother.
I tuned them out and waited till everyone was seated. When everyone finally sat down, I greedily started to fill up my plate with food. God was I starving!
"Ehem," Mother coughed.
I looked up from my almost full plate to see that everyone was looking at me, some where even giving me the evil eye – namely the two wannabe Barbie heads. Did I do something wrong?
"What?" I asked, confused.
"You're not supposed to do that. It's rude." Mother said, glaring at me.
"Not suppose to do what? What's rude?"
Stacey rolled her eyes and Father shook his head in disappointment – or embarrassment. Maybe it was a mixture of both? I couldn't tell.
"You're so stupid, Genie," Kitty commented.
I shot the bitch a look, and she returned the favor by shooting one back at me – except hers looked bitchier. I rolled my eyes. My sister was a true bitch by nature – that was the only reason why her look had more effect than mines.
"You're not supposed to do that –" Kitty pointed at my half full plate. "- with guests here. Didn't you learn anything in your etiquette classes? I would have expected you to have gained some manners."
Was this bitch for real?
My laughter was harsh and bitter. "And I would have thought that you would have gained half a brain by going to school. I guess that we both disappointed each other."
"Girls," Mother's voice was sharp, "Enough."
"Whatever," Kitty muttered as she crossed her arms over her chest and pouted, looking like a total idiot.
I picked up my plate, sat up from my chair and walked out of the dinning room and into the kitchen.
"Where are you going, young lady?" Father asked.
"Anywhere but here," I answered, knowing that I would get a lecture from embarrassing them.
Pfft, as if!
The kitchen door swung close behind me, not feeling hungry anymore, I wrapped a plastic sheet over the food, and placed it inside the refrigerator.
I shuffled around my room, cleaning it and throwing away trash. It didn't take long since my room was pretty spacious with the little furniture I put in; there was a bed, a white bookshelf, a white mahogany table, a black office chair, a plush white rug, a nightstand, and a few posters.
I stood in the middle of my room, hands on my hips as I scanned it.
"What to do? What to do?" I said in a sing-song voice to myself. "I could … Well, how about … Oh! Maybe I can … Ugh, this is going to be harder than I thought."
I slumped forward and trudged towards my bed before flopping onto it. Three seconds later after gazing at my Alamode Passport Duvet Cover full set bedding, I abruptly stood up straight. I guess I did it too fast because I heard a bone crack.
I rolled my shoulders and twisted my body towards the right then left side, hearing more bones crack. I made a mental note to work out tomorrow.
After doing a few stretches, I made my way towards my closet. I pushed away the boxes at the top shelf before my eyes landed on the object I hid behind it.
Smiling, I carefully brought the teapot towards me, and I oh-so-carefully picked it up and settled it down on the crème carpeted floor.
I walked over to my white mahogany table and grabbed a white and blue wash cloth, one dry and the other damp.
I started to clean the teapot with the white damp wash cloth. My eyes must have been playing tricks on me because I thought I saw something coming out of the teapot's small hole. Shaking my head, I replaced the damp wash cloth, which took away all of the small micro dust attached on it, and wiped the teapot with the dry one.
I felt my eye brows furrowing together, were my eyes still messing with me? Or was the small wisp of white smoke that came out was simply a trick of the light?
"Genie, you bitch, mom said that you have to come to the charity even with us!" Kitty cried out, abruptly opening my door.
I looked up at her from my spot on the carpeted floor, and glared.
I really should lock that door.
"Now, Genie, we're leaving. Better hurry up."
I rolled my eyes. "And if I take my sweet ass time? Will you guys finally leave me alone?"
Kitty pursed her lips together and glared at me.
"You look constipated."
The wild cat gaped at me before shaking her head. Her eyes landed on the teapot in my hands. She smirked. "Is that your stupid present for Nana? It looks ugly, cheap, and old. Where did you find it? In the streets?"
I looked back at the teapot. Actually, yes.
"No," I bit back, "I would never give Nana something that someone threw away. Is your brain not working again? Or do you really not just know me, your sister, that well?"
Kitty tilted her head up, and inhaled in her nose sharply and loudly. "Whatever, just hurry up. Gawd, why am I even wasting my time on you?"
And with that, she turned her heels and slammed my door shut.
I rolled my eyes before helping myself get on my feet. I put the teapot back in its hiding place in the closet before leaving my room. I made sure that it was locked before leaving.
I stood with my arms crossed over my chest glaring at anyone who came close to me. I may have come of as rude but what else can I do? I'm in a grumpy, angry mood and it's not like that I can skip around and smile to every single person like a bubbly, happy-go-lucky person.
"Stop glaring," Mother hissed, "You're scaring everyone away."
Me? I'm scaring everyone away? Puh-lease! Woman, have you not seen you're attitude and the clothes you're wearing?
Every person that came across my mother would end up afraid of her. The huge grin plastered onto her face looked permanent and straight out creepy. The summer dress she's wearing showed too much cleavage and if you were to look at her from behind you could almost make out her butt lines ... Ew.
"I expect you to participate in this event and not damper anyone's mood with your own!" Mother whispered harshly to me before walking away.
I made sure that no one was looking before flipping the woman off.
I heard a chuckle behind me. "That's not very nice," A husky, low voice said.
Okay, maybe I didn't check everyone, but still...
Spinning around, I was amazed by the sight.
An attractive boy around my age stood half a foot taller than me. His hazel eyes looked green in the sunlight and his chestnut brown hair looked good against his sun kissed skin.
"Yeah, well, she's my mother," I said, shrugging a shoulder.
The boy raised an eyebrow at me.
"I wouldn't exactly give her Best Mom of The Year award," I continued, "she's not exactly ... motherly to me. You know?"
"Ah," The boy said nodding his head as if he understood what I was trying to explain. "So, long story short: She's the bitchiest mother in the world?"
Wow, he actually got it right after my awkward, confusing explanation – if one could even call it that.
"I'm surprised that you got it correct." I said, smiling, clearly impressed.
"So why are you here? You don't look very comfortable. Actually, you don't look like you want to be here at all." The boy noted.
"I'm not," I admitted. "Truth to be told, I was forced to come here – as a punishment."
"What did you do?"
"Well, I got in trouble with a supposedly 'rude' attitude." I explained, putting air quotes on the word, putting emphasis on it, "But that was only because they were annoying me."
"Oh, I see. Well, that sucks. By the way, I'm Michael. But my friends call me Mike."
"That's cool," I said absent mindedly, nodding my head. I stuck a hand out, and said, "I'm Genie, but everyone else just calls me Gigi."
Mike shook my hand, grinning like an idiot, which made me giggle.
"So what are you doing in this charity event?"
"Oh, you know." Mike said, waving his hand around the air, as if that would explain it for him, "Just donating some money, and looking good for my family. I'm also supposed to meet up my girlfriend here."
I silently thanked God that I wasn't flirting with him, otherwise –
"Never mind, there she is right now!" Mike said, grinning. His hazel, green-ish eyes were looking at a pretty blond girl with light brown eyes and an equally sun kissed skin.
The girl sauntered up to us and gave a peck on Mike's cheek. "Hey babe," she greeted him.
Mike grinned back and kissed her on the lips.
Can I say awkward? I don't like watching couples show their affection for one another right at my face – kind of like this one.
I was about to leave the couple alone before Mike's voice piped up. "So Emily, this is Genie and –"
"Oh I know!" The girl – Emily – interrupted. "Everyone calls you Gigi. You were in three of my classes last year! It's nice to see another familiar face in here."
I knew her?
"Oh, yeah," I said, pretending to know what she was talking about. "Sure, it is. Well, I would love to stay and all but I got to –"
"Genie!" Kitty's loud voice was heard throughout the park where the event was being held at. I scratched my head, trying to hide my face from my arm. The girl walked up to me and said, "Mom said that you have you help out! And that you have to go over there –" She pointed at a blue tent. "– and help out there! Got it? And mom said that I have to watch you go there so that way you won't ditch and make us look bad. Now hurry up! Stacey is with her friends and I want to join them!"
I couldn't help it. I snapped, "God, wannabe much?" My voice surprisingly came out more edgy than I intended it to.
Kitty's face reddened, and her lips puckered up like as if she ate something bad.
I decided to piss her off more by slowly walking over to the tent. I would stop and make random conversations with people that would last for a minute, and then I would 'stop and smell the roses,' after doing that for nearly a dozen times, I would walk over to my destination with the pace of a slug.
"Arghhhhh!" Kitty's scream startled a good amount of people, and hushed whispers spread throughout the park like wild fire. Out of the corner of my eye I saw my mother's face reddening in embarrassment.
I snickered as I walked into the blue tent, a smile playing on my face.
My fingers were making a rhythm as each one of them took turns tapping the plastic green cloaked table. My left hand was on my hip and I shifted my weight so I was leaning against my right hand which was making the tapping music.
I let my eyes wander around the blue tent for a while. There wasn't much in here except for the table, two chairs, a stack of paper, and a red and black pen being used by two middle aged women who looked about five years older than their real age.
The past two hours went by without incident. It was uneventful, boring, and I was starting to get sleepy because I wasn't really assigned to do anything. This was my entire mother's plan. To make me stand in one spot and have more than one pair of eyes watching me not doing anything, just to make sure that I wouldn't bring shame to the family name.
One of the women stood up and stretched her flabby arms. "It's almost lunch time. We should take a break."
The other woman nodded her head in agreement and they both walked out of the tent, straighten up ignoring me. Once their backs left the giant blue tent I felt my back.
They left ... and forgot that I was here?
Not exactly the best choice, but at least I won't be bored. During my time here, I didn't get a good look around the tent, I basically had to stay facing the front because one of the women ordered me to, and she creep me out. So I decided to obey her fatuous order.
I turned around and my eyes immediately landed on a row of cages with animals trapped in there. I'll admit it, I'm an animal lover and seeing these wonderful creatures being held against their will was just wrong to me.
A smile itched its way onto my face and I pretty much let my body take control. This was an animal charity event and I knew that there would be animals trapped in cages somewhere over here. This was partly the reason why I kept my back facing them.
One by one, I unlocked the latch and yelled like a total imbecile, "Be free, my friends! Be free!"
They were all running out of the exit/entrance of the tent and some of the smaller animals went under the tent and made their way outside, I helped of course.
I soon heard screaming. There were shrieks escaping people's throats, and I thought I heard Kitty, Stacey, and her clique screaming profanities. Once again, a smile graced its way onto my lips with that thought.
My back was facing the entrance/exit of the tent, so anyone passing by wouldn't see the amused smile on my face.
I heard Stacy's group of friends screaming bloody murder – or in this case Snake! I looked over at the cage where a group of harmless garden snakes were slithering at, it wouldn't have been fair if I kept them trapped in there. Same thing went for the giant mice's that were sometimes mistaken as small rats.
Hmm, I guess they found the giant lizards too.
I was the only one laughing. I was the only one who found this to be amusing. I was also the only one who got into trouble.
My father shook his head disapprovingly at me, and my mother was ignoring me – along with everyone else. Not that I don't mind. Kitty kept on shooting lethal glares at me and if looks could kill, I'd be lying dead cold on the floor right now.
I waltz inside my room and plopped down onto my bed. My eyes fixed on the giant white dream catcher hanging above the ceiling at the center of my bed. The snow white feathers looked like it was glowing with the moon's light hitting off of it perfectly.
I laid there for what seemed like hours, my mind wandering whilst my eyes looked blank and emotionless.
Sighing, I got up from my bed. It seemed that I won't be able to sleep. I began to fix things around my room. I straightened out the wrinkles and creases on the corners of my posters; I toyed around with the stuff on my desk, rearranging them about five different times. Then I began to organize my closet.
I had all my clothes on their hangers lying down on my bed and my shoes were sprawled across the floor. My accessories were sitting on my comfy arm chair. I stood on my toes, trying to pry out things from the back of the closet. I felt a smooth, cold handle and eagerly pulled it out.
I looked down at the pretty teapot in my hands. I felt something brush against my fingers; a chill ran up and down my spine. I saw something move at the side of the teapot, is that a spider?
Panicking, I let out a tiny yelp and sucked in the air sharply. I also dropped the teapot.
The sound of glass breaking made me flinch. I noticed that smoke was starting to rise out of the cherry wood flooring. A fire can't start with glass being smashed against wood, can it?
The smoke began to get thicker and thicker. I instinctively backed away. Being next to the smoke is one thing, but being in it is another. I was certain that my whole room would be filled with smoke, and maybe fire.
Yet, that was the weird part. I couldn't smell anything burning, and if there was a fire wouldn't the smoke feel hot? When it lightly brushed against my skin, it felt cool and damp.
The smoke soon spread out and started to disappear ... and it was replaced by glaring green eyes instead.