Thursday, December 25, 2014

A Twisted New Years


 

It was the ending of another year with the New Year about to start. Only a few more hours and the party would start. Kallista Pendragon examined her handwork as she gazed around the room. Everything looked wonderful. From floor to ceiling decorations hung everywhere.

“It’s perfect!” She clasped her hands together happily and rested her chin on them.

Venice rushed in with her beautiful lilac hair dressed in an updo. In her hands she held last minuet items that were needed for the party.  Following behind her was Noam and Lizzy helping her to bring in the silverware and crystal cups for the dinner that night.

“Everything looks all….glittery, Kallie!” Venice encouraged her wayward friend. “You should go and put on your dress.”

Kallie looked down at her jeans and the trusty rainbow suspenders. “I can’t wear these?”

“No sweetie, we talked about it, remember?” Lizzy said patiently.

It was not unusual for Kallista to be forgetful, especially since she came home from the hospital a week ago. For this reason Kallista was not left alone for too long.  This time it was Raven who stayed by her side.

“Of course she remembers, right Kallie?” Raven popped her head out from around the doorway to the kitchen. “We just talked about it.”
“Right, I remember!” Kallista smiled as she lied.

Hurriedly she left the room and made her way upstairs. Pausing, she admired the beautiful intricate Italian stair rail that led up to five stories in the old newly remodeled brownstone townhouse. Even though it was sturdy it was not good for sliding down on. She had found out that the hard way. Gingerly she rubbed the back of her head where it still hurt and glanced down at the wall were she had crashed the other day. The flower stand she had used to cover up the damage was still there. Breathing a sigh of relief she turned back to go up the stairs and almost bumped into Niall.

“Easy there, Kal.” He said as he steadied her. “Are you feeling guilty about something?”

“No,” she squeaked out, lying again and smiled.

“So are you going to tell me how the wall down there has a Kallista sized dent in it?”

“It was an accident! I swear!”

“You were sliding down the railing again, weren’t you!”

“Yes.” She looked down, guilty.

Niall sighed as he walked down the stairs past her. “You are lucky you didn’t get hurt.”

“Yeah,” She covered up another lie with a laugh. “I’ve got to go up and get changed now.”

Turning she fled back up the stairs into her room.

“I’ll be watching you, Kallista Pendragon.” He responded lowly with narrow eyes.

                A while later Kallista stood in front of her full length mirror, wearing a dress. It was not her best one, but was pretty all the same. It was the first time in a long while she had even worn a dress. A year’s worth of rest had cleaned up most of the evidence of her former persona. Where once she had a wild and funky Mohawk, she now had curly black hair styled in a bob cut short, chin length. Blue eyes looked back at her but had lost their sparkle long time ago.  Sighing, she turned to leave her comfortable room. There waiting for her was Sarthacus leaning on the wall, with his hands in his pocket.

“Brother!” She hugged him, and then whispered for the thousand time, “I’m sorry.”

“I know,” He replied and followed her down the hall.

When she came to the stairs she paused and was considering sliding down the stairs.

“Don’t even think about it, Kallista!” Sarthacus warned as if reading her thoughts.

“I wasn’t going too!” She lied yet again.

He went ahead of her and walked down the stairs. Meekly she followed him, playing with the folds in her dress. Thor met her at the bottom and held out his hand to her.  As elegantly as she could she held onto his hand and entered the party. Everyone was dressed in their finest the guys looking dashing and the girls all looking stunning. There was soft music in the background and the sound of glass clinking on glass could be heard.  Breathing deeply, she paused.  There was a lot she had to repent for, so much so that she was not sure she belonged to this group of people anymore.

As it was, she was no longer welcomed home for the disgrace she had brought upon herself. If it wasn’t for the generosity of her friends, she would have no place to go to.

“Relax, you look beautiful.” Thor whispered in her ears.

But she knew he was just being kind. Then Noam and Daniel waved to her from the corner where they were standing and she felt welcomed. Smiling she headed their way without giving anyone noogies. It was time to grow up.

Changing course slightly she went over to the huge bay window and opened the shade to peek out. It was already dark out and the street lights were on, shining brightly next to the Christmas lights that twinkled on the trees.  A blanket of snow covered the ground looking more like diamonds in the frosty weather.  On the windows there was the splendid natural display of icy artwork, carved in swirling patterns.  People walked by, dressed in their heavy winter gear. Kallista hoped they all had a place to go, for last year, she did not. Turning away from the window she saw that everyone was having a good time. It was pleasant to see.  Slowly she drifted around the room as if in a private dance, making her way past all those who she dearly loved but had treated shabbily. Most had forgiven her while some had not. But all treated her kindly and gave her a chance to heal in peace. For that she was thankful.  When the chance came, she slipped out the door leaving a note behind.

She knew what she had to do. Slowly she walked down the street to retrace her steps that fateful night, unaware that she was being followed. Drifting snow began to fall down around her, landing gently on her eyelashes and cheeks.

There on the corner was the store she had bought the eggnog. It was closed and dark inside. Thinking of the old woman and of the Santa Clause men she whispered, I’m sorry. It was too late to make amends to them now, but somehow she would find a way.

Her path lead past the Victorian house she had broken into. There were lights on in the house. Scared, she forced her way to the front door and knocked. Slowly the door opened and an elderly man appeared.

From their hidden spot, the trio watched but could not hear anything said.  They witnessed the girl talking animated, her hands gesturing wildly, heard the elderly man speak curtly and saw the front door close with a bang. Kallista’s shoulders sag.

Wearily she turned and trudged down the steps and headed towards the school she had once attended. The distance was greater than she had imagined. Shivering, she pulled her hood up over her head and walked on. Then she saw it, the school she had once gone too.  Suddenly she was afraid, for the monster she had been was there again, ready to come out. Defiantly, she placed one step into the school yard followed by another step. She came to the place where she had scaled the wall and broke in the school. Tracing her hand along the wall she quelled her desire to climb.

“Not today, not ever again.” She whispered.

Whirling around she skipped to the old playground meant for younger kids and she jumped on a swing. Pumping her legs, she ignored the cold and swung as high as she could feeling the icy kiss of winter on her face. For a moment she felt free, the weight that had been crushing her lifted. How easy it would be to fly away and never return to earth. She leaned forward with her arms out wide and leapt while the swing was in motion. Then she felt herself falling and forced her eyes open. She would face the consequence head on. The mounted snow cushioned her fall but she still felt the pain. It was nothing to the pain she felt on the inside, to the pain that she had caused others.  For a moment she lay there face down in the snow, spread eagle. Then she made a snow angel and giggled. Jumping up she ignored the bloody nose she had and walked to the front of the school. It was there she had been chased away and told never to come back.

“I CAME BACK!” She bellowed in challenge. But there was no one to meet her head on.

Frowning, she turned away and walked towards a house she knew very well. A swirling pile of emotions swept over her from longing, to pain, anger, and the simple emotion of missing someone. Finally she arrived at the neatly trimmed ranch house that belonged to Kelly Adams.  She knocked on the door. It looked as if there was a party going on. It was Kelly, herself who opened the door.

“Oh my gosh, Kallista!” She covered her face with her hands. “I thought you were dead! I’m so sorry!”

“Uh, I think I was supposed to be saying that.” Kallista spoke softly.

A movement beside Kelly caught her attention. It was Brian, her boyfriend. Brian saw her and cursed. Kallista was getting used to it by now.

“What are you doing here, Kal?” He said as he stepped outside. “Are you making Kelly cry?”

He grabbed the front of her coat and lifted her up. Slamming her into the side of the house he yelled at her.

“Just because you are a girl doesn’t mean I won’t hit you!” He snarled.

“Brian, Stop!” Kelly cried out.

From behind Kallista, unseen by her, three figures emerged from the shadows and quietly challenged Brian. Upon seeing them, Brian’s eyes widened and he let Kallista go. She hit the ground hard and fell to her knees.  From her crouched position she turned to look behind her but saw no one.

“You’ve got some friends, Kallista!” Brian spoke grudgingly.
“I know,” She smiled as she thought of Lizzy, Sarthacus, Raven, Skyril, of Mar, and Mir, Lydia, Venice, Niall, Octaboona, Thor, Daniel, and Noam, and of Hellboy, and Silente, Emerald and so many others.

Surprisingly, Brian held out his hand to her. Looking up at him she doubted for a moment then reached up and took his hand. He helped her up.

“I’m sorry,” He said.
“I’m sorry,” Kallista started then paused. “What did you say?”

“I said I am sorry. I am sorry for the way I….the way we treated you at school that day.”

“You are?”

“We all were.” He admitted. “Though it took some of us longer than others to realize it.”

“I’m sorry too,” Kelly added with tears in her eyes and hugged Kallista. “I’m glad you are not dead.”

For the first time Kallista wondered if it would be alright after all. Maybe living was not so hard but worth it.

The two went back inside to join the party and Kallista left to go join the party she was meant to be at.

A sound reached her ears, a thin wailing cry of a baby. The sound, like always, immediately undid her. She had to see if the baby was ok.  Following the sound she was horrified to see a bassinet lying by itself in the park.  The baby’s high pitch wail of helplessness reached out and pulled at a long hidden memory. Swiftly she pulled the baby out and cradled the crying child to her.  Looking around she saw no one else. A strange sense of elation coursed over her.

“No one wanted you either.” She spoke to the baby softly, “But I want you.”

She would take the baby home and raise the child herself. Surely this child was a gift from God to replace the other one lost to her. Rosy plans filled her mind as she held the baby.  Visions of how life would be danced merrily before her.  She would name the child Michaela, and make sure she would have everything she ever wanted. Ballet, horseback riding lessons, and violins were in her future.

Turning, she made her way across the quiet park all the while crooning to the tiny infant.
“WAIT!” A desperate voice pleased.

Startled, Kallista turned to see a young woman standing there.  Dread filled her and she knew who she was looking at. Shaking her head she clutched the baby tighter to her chest.

“No, you chose to abandon this child. She’s mine now.” Kallista cried out.

“I changed my mind, I want her!” The mother pleaded.

“You have no right for a second chance when I got none!” Kallista raised her voice in despair. “How come you should be able to keep your baby when I was not!”

“Please, she’s all I have…”

“Why did you set her down and try to leave her?”

“I saw you coming and thought she would have a better chance with you.” The mother admitted.

“You judged me on how I looked but know nothing about me.” Kallista hardened her heart. “I lost my child. I became an object of scorn and hate. I am a monster who even threatened harm to one of my dearest friends!”

The young woman looked startled. “There was a look in your eye that told me something else. I saw it and believed in that moment that Sarah was better off with you then with me.”

“Her name is Michaela.” Kallista said but already in her heart she knew it was a losing battle.

The child began to cry again.

“She needs me and I need her,” The woman wept. “How can you feed her?”

“With a bottle,” Kallista coldly replied, tears streaming down her face.

“Please don’t take my baby, I will do anything to have her back.”

“Anything?”

“Yes!”

“You will give her the love and care she needs and let her take ballet if she want too?”

“Yes,”

“You will never forsake her and let her be who she is meant to be?”

“Of course!” The woman said brokenly.

“I have no right to this child.” Kallista proclaimed. “Sarah will be better off with you. I am but a monster in disgrace.”

“No, you have done a great thing tonight.” The mother said with joy as she came to claim her baby.

Kallista didn’t make it easy. Weeping she held Sarah for the last time and then gave her to her mother.

“What is your name?”

“I’m Camilla.” She smiled through the tears.

“Do you have a place to go too?”

“I do.” Camilla answered.

“I wish you peace and happiness Camilla and Sarah.” Kallista turned to leave.

“One day you will have another child and this one won’t be taken from you. You will raise her and she will be yours and you will find great joy in one another.”

Kallista didn’t turn around but wept brokenly. “I will hold on to that as a sign from God.”

Without another word she turned and headed for home, except she didn’t know how to get back.  Confusion filled her mind as she looked around and could not remember anything.

Three figures stepped out of the shadows and surrounded her.

It was Sarthacus, Hellboy, and Niall.

“You did a good thing, Kallista.” Sarth said quietly.

“Octa came with us and is making sure the woman and her child will arrive safely at home.” Niall told her.

“It’s time to get you back home, Kallie.” Hellboy said as he hugged her.

“I don’t know the way.” She sobbed.

“We will show you the way.” He laughed gently.

“Plus, Thor has got the vehicle.” Niall said as Thor pulled up with Hellboy’s silver van.

Thor jumped out of the van with a blanket.

“How come every time I see you, you are bruised and bloodied?” He sighed as he wrapped the blanket around her.

“How did you find me?” She laughed through her tears.

“We never lost you.” Sarth said simply. "We had you followed the moment you left the party."

“”But we knew you had to find yourself.” Niall added calmly. “Now let’s all get in the van and go celebrate the New Year with everyone else.”

Octaboona joined them then and they all climbed back into the van and drove home.  Once they go there, they helped a cold Kallista back into the house where she was received by many hugs and noogies.

“You’re never too old to get a noogie,” Raven grinned at her. “Welcome back, Kallista.”

“Welcome back, Kallie,” Sky joined in and handed her hot cider.

“Welcome home, Kallista.” Thor said as he hugged her.

As she looked around at all her friends, she realized they were truly her family. She was at home and she had a long life ahead of her filled with second chances.

4 comments:

  1. I am glad to be able to read another story from you so soon! It is good to read your writing again.

    You have given us another story full of emotion. It seemed like a really personal story this time.

    *hugs*

    I am glad that Kal is on a path of recovery with all of her friends. The part with Kal and the baby was very raw and touching.

    Thanks for posting :)

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

    Octa

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  2. This was wonderful, Kallie, absolutely brilliant, and so very touching *hugs*
    Amazing writing as usual, and marvelous detail :D I'm so happy that we got another story from you so quickly, it really is Christmas :D (even though it's the day after Christmas, I'm still counting it :D)
    *hugs*

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  3. Aw, what an awesome story! ~hugs~ Love you, sister, and the ending to that story is a true one. This has got to be one of your best stories. I loved it and really enjoyed reading it

    ReplyDelete