Smile, senorita!


Hello, dearies! ♥ Too long, right? I know.

But guess what? My Internship was greatfun. There was the occasional hustle between us and the people we were working for/with, but in the end, it all worked out. I made a motion detector, and then connected it to a music player. It played ‘Carry On My Wayward Son’ every time the alarm went off. 🙂

And I met someone. No, it’s not a boy. Her name is Medha, and we met during the Internship. Fortunately for me, she goes to my school, too! I guess my fate isn’t that bad after all, considering that I meet awesome people so often. Medha is obsessed with Dean Winchester just like I am! We spent most of the time discussing Dean when otherwise we were supposed to have worked on our beetle robot 😛

Medha is a really cool person. Very strong, and very confident. She reminds me why it’s so important to face life head on.

These five days will always be there in a very special part of my memory, where I’m not batnuts crazy, and life’s isn’t so insane. It felt like I was living ahead of time. It felt like magic.

Oh, well! Can’t do much about it now, can I? I don’t think so.

Well, time to go. My sister’s shouting at me to get her breakfast. But before I go, a bit more of The Color of Awesome for you all to enjoy!

NOTE: This is in continuation with Chapter ONE, so I think there shouldn’t be any problem in understanding!

Coach Martin, who had observed my actions quite closely, cleared his throat just like I had, to get my attention. ‘Okay, Turner. There are a lot more people to meet.’ He tugged on my arm and dragged me to meet the others.

After half-an-hour of awkward give-and-take of ‘how are you’ and ‘nice to meet you’, I was familiar with all the member of the football team, and aware of the fact that if I wanted to play football, I had to play it with the boys because like I’d suspected, the girls’ team was just a hoax to lure the students in.

‘You don’t mind playing with my boys, do you?’ Coach Martin wanted to know as he walked me to the principal’s office. I’d spent the day in the field with the team, and with barely an hour left for the last bell to ring, he wanted to make sure that I’d met the principal and taken his consent about my decision to join the boys’ team.

‘Absolutely not, coach.’ I said, and he grinned down at me. Did I mention Coach Martin is six two? Well, now you know. He practically has to bend down every time he wants to look at me.

‘That’s good. And by the way, you’re a natural. I’ve never seen a girl who plays such badass football, Turner.’ He praised my football skills as we came to a stop in front of the door marked ‘PRINCIPAL’. Coach Martin didn’t knock or anything, just marched right in.

The secretary who was sitting beside the principal’s cubicle—that was entirely made with glass, more like a fish tank than an office—was startled by the sudden opening of the door. She dropped the copy of Cosmo she was reading. But when she saw it was only the coach with the harmless little new girl, she relaxed a bit.

‘You scared me, Phil.’ she complained, but I could see she didn’t mind being scared by Coach Martin. Maybe she carried a secret torch for him, because it wasn’t hard to be impressed by the coach. He’s quite good-looking himself.

Just not as good-looking as the center forward of his team.

‘Sorry, Helena.’ Coach Martin replied, ‘is David in?’ he asked only because he was supposed to, as it wasn’t hard to spot the principal inside his fish tank.

‘Sure, go right in.’ Helena beamed at the coach, who returned the favor before opening the door to the cubicle.

 

Mr. Byrne—that was the principal’s name—struck me as a nice and easy-going person, because his office was decorated with photographs of his during high school days, and when I told him that I wanted to be a part of the boys’ football team since its female counterpart doesn’t exist, he didn’t say peep about it.

Instead, he sounded genuinely pleased with my decision. ‘That’s so wonderful, Elizabeth!’ he grinned at me from across his desk, ‘a wonderful young woman like yourself as a part of our football team would be wonderful! Just . . . wonderful!

I smiled at him, and I could see he didn’t know many adjective apart from ‘wonderful’, like Mandy Moore in Because I Said So, where she doesn’t speak anything except ‘great’. Yeah, the principal of Illyria Academy is the forty-something male version of Mandy Moore. How wonderful.

He pointed out the code of conduct a student of the Academy was expected to follow without fail, and also described consequences of the transgressions such as bunking school, dealing with drugs on campus—the usual stuff. I assured him I would abide by the rules and make sure I don’t get into any sort of trouble, and he said a little more of the ‘wonderful’ he seemed so fond of.

Then he handed my class schedule and the locker combination as the only thing I’d managed to do on the first day in my new school was convince the football coach to take me in, because frankly, football was the only reason (beside my brother’s anxiety) why I’d agreed to move to Illyria. I hadn’t even cared to collect my schedule or know what locker I was assigned.

 ‘So, anything else I can do for you, Elizabeth?’ Mr. Byrne asked me.

‘Yes, actually you can,’ I said, getting up to leave, ‘please call me Ellie. Elizabeth’s kind of a mouthful, don’t you think?’

He seemed horrified. ‘Why, I don’t think so! It’s a wonderful name, young woman. Such a wonderful name.’

‘Okay, fine, sir. Call me whatever you want.’ I said, because I knew he wouldn’t call me Ellie ever in his life, and if I resisted for long, he might settle down for convincing me how ‘wonderful’ my name was. So, no thank you, I’m going to save myself the trouble. As I opened the door, Mr. Byrne called, ‘okay, buh-bye Elizabeth! See you tomorrow!’

And I was out.

‘I’ll see you tomorrow, Turner.’ Coach Martin said before leaving me at the entrance to the building. There were still five minutes to go for school to end, but I didn’t want to wait.

‘Sure, sir.’ I saluted him and filed out the door without looking back.

 

Marina, California is sunny throughout the year. It hardly ever gets cold—besides the morning, when the fog rolls in from the ocean—for us to wear anything warmer than a thin sweater or a coat.

As I walked out the air-conditioned building of Illyria Academy, I realized how hot it actually was outside, with the sun beating down on the ground like it had exploded into a million pieces and all those pieces had fallen on the ground. It was a gorgeous day.

Just the kind I’d love to spend on the beach with Cindy, preferably with Diet Coke. I fished out my phone from my backpack and wrote a quick text to her.

Get out quickly. Let’s hit the beach. XOXO- E

 Remember the person who had persuaded Luke to force me to switch schools? Yeah, that was Cindy. She goes to Illyria too, and right in the middle of the freshman year, she wanted to have her best friend in her school. Why? I’ll tell you why.

To everyone else apart from me, Cindy is the decorous young lady any parent would love to have. No wonder her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Bellasario, named her Cinderella (they aren’t aware of their daughter’s boy-stalking skills as well as I am). Apart from the time she spends checking out the boys in the neighborhood; Cindy does her best to watch over me, because I simply cannot do that. I mean, I can, but the ways we take care of stuff differ a lot. For example, if someone pisses Cindy off, she would talk to him or her, or make some snide comment, but that’s all. That’s how she handles stuff—calmly and sensibly.

When I get angry, it’s Armageddon for that idiot. I sucker punch every person who tries to get nasty with me, and if you want, you might add this to ‘Why Luke Dumped Me in Illyria Academy’ list.

And because my best friend has to be prim and proper every time, she cooked up some story about the Juvies—not entirely, because there are some junkies with a criminal record back at the public school—and blurted it all out in front of Luke, who went ballistic and applied for admission in Illyria the very next day.

Hence, this state of misery.

 

I was waiting in my car—that is Luke’s Mustang he let me borrow only for today, what with it being the first day in the upmarket new school—listening to Slow Dancing in a Burning Room when someone tapped on the window. I rolled the glass down without looking up, thinking it was Cindy, and said, ‘Get in, you idiot. We’re already late.’

‘Um, Ellie?’ a masculine voice answered me.

Oh, bugger.

I looked up at Tyler, who was standing there, squinting at me, with a smile that was slightly crooked at one end glued to his handsome face.

Finally, after getting over the embarrassment that I’d just called him an ‘idiot’, although unintentionally, I managed to blurt out. ‘Oh, it’s you.’

‘Waiting for someone?’ he wanted to know, grinning wide. My heart skipped a beat. Or maybe it stopped beating altogether.

Dear Ellie, I thought fiercely to myself, behave. You only get one chance with a hot guy like Tyler Carlson.

‘Um, yeah. I’m waiting for Cindy.’ I replied, my voice going from rude to squeaky in three seconds flat.

‘Cindy Bellasario?’ he asked just as she sauntered up to the car and threw the passenger door open. She too, was busy marveling in Tyler’s glory.

‘Hey El, I see you’ve made new friends.’ She was talking to me but looking at Tyler, who in turn was looking at me. More like squinting, but it still counts.

‘All right, I’ll leave you girls alone. See ya.’ He said, stepping away from the car as Cindy got inside and slammed the door shut with a little too much force. She was peeved that for the first time in the seventeen years of our lives, a boy paid more attention to me than her. Like I’ve said before, Cindy is the poster girl for beautiful.

Driving down to the house—my house, because we always spend the afternoon together—to change before going to the beach, I narrated the story of how I registered a glorious victory in the field over an infuriated Nick Walker and an embarrassed Travis Gregory, and then how I kept on gawking at Tyler in front of the team, and Coach Martin.

Like I’d expected, Cindy was laughing her lungs out.

‘You are crazy, you know that?’ she said between chimes of laughter, ‘One day in the Academy and you managed to piss off Nick and get smitten by Tyler Carlson! Oh, Ellie!’ and she laughed some more.

Well, yeah, I liked Tyler, but smitten would not be the word I’d use just yet. I mean, for all that I knew, the guy could be an egoistic Casanova to boot, and that’s not the guy I’d like to be smitten with. And it doesn’t help that I couldn’t get his twinkling blue eyes and caramel hair out of my mind, either.

So unfair.

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Don’t forget your reactions for me! I’ll be waiting!

Love,

Snigdha ♥

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