Tuesday, July 24, 2012

For Every Person There Is A Story Part 1

All right, everybody! I've been working with getting more authors. So, I know I only created it today, but here's the first story!

Rain Heights

I glanced out the window of the car, the wild bumps in the deserted, quiet dirt country road jolting me so that I couldn’t even place my arm on the door’s armrest without the fear of getting serious bruises the next day. And bruises wasn’t what I needed being the new girl.
   “Jessica?” Dad peeked at me in the rearview mirror. “You OK?”
   “Sure,” I answered without much enthusiasm.
   “Asa!” Mom cried. “Look at this!” Mom stuck the huge foldout map underneath Dad’s nose, making the tires on the car screech as we nearly flew off the road and into the huge ditch.
    Dad glared at her. “Careful, Mei.”
    My mother’s eyes only twinkled. “Look!” she pointed at something on the map. I could only imagine what on earth it was.
    “Honey, that’s…” Dad started.
    “…the town with the nearest Target store! I know!” she declared. “Isn’t it great, Jess?” she glanced at me, using Dad’s rearview mirror. “Look!” she proceeded to stuff it underneath my nose.
     I instinctively pulled it away and then glanced tentatively at the map that my Chinese mother had thrust upon me. On it, where her red-painted nails were pointing, was the name of a town. Zodiac, to be exact. Whenever I thought of it I thought of the Zodiac, the crazy killer dude in California. At least, there was a guy like that according to History Channel.
    “Where’s the town we’re moving to?” I murmured, flicking the map out of Mom’s hands and spreading it out over my lap, eyes searching.
   “Honey!” Mom protested, giving me The Look.
    There it is, I nodded to myself. Rain Heights, Population 10. Make that population 13. As far as I knew, that meant something about Hindus and beings, err, something like that.
    “Jess,” started Mom, “penny for your thoughts!”
     I gave her The Look. “Why on earth are we moving to a town called Rain Heights, where the population is 10?”
    “Honey!” Mom laughed. “Why on earth do you think so? Because California is getting way
too politic these days. Besides, this is going to be just great for us! The East! Our California friends are going to want us to visit New York City and tell them all about it, you know.”
     “I guess then we should move to France,” I snorted, “so we can tell everybody all about Paris.”
    Mom glared at me, but a smile played on her lips. She usually never stayed mad for long, unless you forgot to say that her ancestors could’ve possibly been royalty or…well…yeah. That’s kind of our personal family secret.
      “We’re almost there!” announced Dad, avoiding my eyes in the rearview mirror. That mirror was starting to annoy me; it never did what I wanted, as in fog up so I didn’t have to see their eyes watching me.
    “I don’t see any signs announcing we’re entering a town,” whispered Mom to herself, glancing fretfully over the dashboard every few seconds. She turned to Dad. “Asa, are you sure that we’re going in the right direction? What if we picked the wrong dirt road? You know that all of them look exactly the same!”
   “Mei, just be patient,” Dad suggested.
   I frowned out the window, watching the trees fly by as Dad expertly drove the car away from danger (AKA the ditches on the side of the road and Mom’s sudden and sometimes unexpected distractions). 
    Just then, there was this small little wood sign on the side of the road announcing in sloppy paint letters, “River Heights, ½ Mi.”. ½ mile? Seriously? We should’ve already been seeing it, as far as I was concerned.
       I glanced out of the window again. Maybe not. The trees were pretty thick, tall and waving, and they certainly weren’t going to move anytime soon.
    “We’re almost there!” Mom squealed, small eyes bright. “Asa, did you see that sign?!”
     “Yes, dear,” Dad assured, keeping his eyes on the road like all good drivers do. I sighed and settled back into my seat.
       And then there we were—driving up the bumpy road towards what looked like a cluster of cottages. And, seeming rather out of a place, was a small little gas station that looked like a cottage, too.
     “We’re here!” Mom practically shrieked at the top of her lungs, gripping Dad’s arm so hard that he made the car swerve. He glared at her.
      There were twelve buildings and structures, one of them a Sinclair gas station and another looking like some kind of deli. Everything else, except one building that looked like a small warehouse, were small cottages.
     I wondered, faintly, which one was going to be my new home. What if none of them were and we were yet to see the horrors of our new house…I mean cottage in a dinky little town called Rain Heights, population 10.
    Right to the side of the car was a huge sign that announced:

Welcome To
Rain Heights
Ooh, goody. Just what I wanted. Not.
    “Jess,” Mom started, “isn’t this exciting? We’re already here! Quick! Be ready to grab your bags the second that Asa stops!”
    “Which house is ours?” I managed, trying to keep out Mom’s obnoxious giggles that filled the car.
      “I believe it’s called Apprentice Cottage,” Dad answered before Mom could come up with some crazy story, trying to scare me. “Apparently the residents name all of their cottages. It’s rather quaint, really.”
    “It’s awesome!” burst Mom. “Can’t you just imagine? Apprentice Cottage. The name’s so cool! Just like Ranger’s Apprentice, like those books you’re always reading, Jess!”
    “Right, Jessica,” Dad agreed.
    I sighed. It seemed that they both had their different names for me. Sometimes I didn’t even know what my real name was.
    Dad parked the car by one of the many cottages. It had a sign outside that said “Apprentice Cottage” in curly script. I wanted to roll my eyes but kept my feelings to myself and trudged behind my parents to the front door, where Dad was just fitting the key into the lock.
     As they bickered why the door wasn’t opening very easily, I sucked up the situation: our cottage was one in a row that made the only street in the whole town. Apprentice Cottage had a pretty good yard, fenced in by a tall wood fence. Trees overtook the backyard, and I couldn’t see how far it extended behind the cottage.
    Apprentice Cottage, like all of the cottages, was made of tan stone. The trim was all wood and everything. There was a small porch on it with a porch-swing, but I wouldn’t have trusted my life to that ancient thing.
      Vines and flowers had taken over the outside of the building. Mom was squealing about how it looked just like one of those cottages from fairytales. I didn’t want to burst her bubble and state the obvious—that fairytales aren’t real and that my life definitely wasn’t a fairytale.
       “Jess! Come on!” Mom called from the door.
       I sighed and then walked through the small gate and up the stone path. Dad was just pushing open the door, and both of my parents went into our new house. I caught up with them and looked inside. It wasn’t much—one bathroom, a kitchen, two bedrooms, a living room, an office room—yep, that pretty much summed it up.
      All of our stuff was already there. That is, like the furniture and dishes. Even my bed was up, but the sheets were still in the car. I frowned and twiddled a piece of my straight light brown hair. Everything had been brought here from California, just as Mom and Dad had planned and paid for. It was just weird, though.
     “Quick!” cried Mom. “That’s get everything unloaded so that we’ll be totally ready when the neighbors start paying visits!” her eyes were bright as she started to march towards the door.
    “Mei!” Dad called after her, grabbing her shoulder before she’d reached the door. “How on earth do you know that they’re going to come?”
    “I just know!” she declared.
    As if my mom was a prophetess or something, there was a knock on the door. I came out of the kitchen’s doorway, rather curious as to who on earth would be knocking on our door.
     Mom practically threw the door open, thrusting her face into the strangers’ faces. There were two of them, to be exact—a woman around Mom’s age and a boy around my age. The woman smiled kindly at my parents, wrinkles showing in her pale skin, the smile even reaching her blue eyes.
     “Hello.” The woman stuck her hand out from underneath a covered basket. “I’m Vanessa Johnson. And you’re the Freemans, right?”
      “Yep!” Mom agreed, grabbing the woman’s hand and nearly shaking her arm off. “That’s us! I’m Mei Freeman, and this is my husband, Asa, and my daughter, Jess.”
      Dad shook her hand, too, but more gently, thank goodness. I just managed a smile and nodded at her.
     “Oh!” cried Mrs. Johnson. “And this is my son, Logan.”
      Ooh, goody.
      “I just thought we’d bring over some friendship bread,” she continued, handing Mom the basket. “It’s my own recipe. I hope you guys enjoy it.”
      “I’m sure we will,” Dad nodded.
      “Well, that’s all,” Mrs. Johnson smiled. “Goodbye!” she waved and then her and Logan walked away, out of Apprentice Cottage’s yard and down the road.
      “Perfect!” Mom squealed the second Dad had shut the door. She smiled right at me. “Jess, there’s already a kid here your age!”
      My eyes grew bigger. “Uh, Mom, he’s a guy.”
      “So?” she shrugged. “It’s not like you have to get married if you’re friends. Honey, it’s not like we live on a reality TV show or we’re in a book or anything.” She grinned at me. “Come on. It’ll be good for you to have a friend in your hometown.”
     I glared at her but didn’t say anything. Dad winked one of his green eyes, the same color that I’d inherited. But it didn’t make me feel any better.


  1. Love. Just love it. We have the same type of humor. Ooh, goody. Love that too:)

  2. Willow and Jess: thanks so much!!

  3. Oh my goodness!!! You are a wonderful writer!!!

    1. Thank you so much, Kathryn!! And so are you. =D

    2. Aw, thank you! That means a lot to me!

  4. LOVE IT! I'm new to this blog, so I'll probably be posting comments on all of your stories. Lol.


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