The Real Fantasy

Kitty has always dreamed of her fantasies coming true . . .

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1. Kinetica Closing

I should've known at seven am this morning that this day was going to be a bad one. I logged onto the website of my favourite TV programme, Kinetica, to find out when the new series will be out, only to realise that they'll never make another episode again - something to do with losing their set licensing! Oh why – why – did they have to do this to me? Kinetica is my favourite ever TV show and now they'll never be another one! Why? And they just had to leave the last episode on a 'To be Continued', didn't they? How am I supposed to find out what happens next now? Urggh! It's not fair!

No, this is stupid, Kitty, I tell myself. It’s just a TV programme – there are loads of better things in the world. Take Harry Potter, for example – that’s a hundred times better than a cheesy programme on TV. And what about Dianna Wynne Jones, the Queen of fantasy? Ooh, and Eragon – I love those books. Actually, it’s the fantasy part that I love. I’m really not interested if it’s not fantasy, I just can’t get into the plot. I know most people would disagree with me, but I find that a book isn’t really a book if it could happen in real life. In a book anything can happen, but if you follow the strict rules of real life I find it boring. No, what I like reading about is something so unrealistic that it could never happen, yet it sucks you in like it’s completely real and leaves you wishing that it is real. Anything else I find isn’t worth reading.

I saunter along the school corridor, making my way to the exit so I can finally go home. This is usually the time that I’m dashing out the building and sprinting home so I don’t miss a minute of the next episode of Kinetica, but now there’s no point running . . .

I’ve been depressed all day. Yeah, I know, stupid thing to get upset over, but you don’t understand. One of the last things my mum bought me was a DVD of the first series of Kinetica. She thought I would like it because it had a picture of a cat on it like my name, Kitty. Hey, shut up, I was only seven, OK? People treat you differently at that age.

Anyway, I watched my mum’s cancer gradually get worse. I didn’t truly understand what it meant when all her beautiful, honey coloured hair started to fall out, but was smart enough to realise that the fact that she spent practically all her time in hospital wasn’t a good sign. I didn’t know the full extent of Mum’s illness until I overheard a couple of nurses talking about me. My dad was at a machine in the hospital corridor, buying tickets so Mum could watch a couple of hours of TV on the screen above her bed. I’d nipped into the toilet next to Mum’s room. My dad knew I was in there, the nurses didn’t.

‘Poor child,’ I heard one say through the hospital’s thin walls. They were outside my mum’s room, talking in hushed voices.

‘Should anyone tell her?’ asked another nurse.

‘No, her mum is as good as gone, best not to make things any worse.’

‘Is there really nothing we can do for her mum?’

‘Nothing at all.’

‘Poor little Kitty . . .’

‘I know . . . Her mum’s got just under a month to live.’

I ran out the tiny bathroom, tears forming in my eyes. I hated myself for not realising before. It was the only thing that could explain my dad’s constant deflated expression, like he’d been crushed by a heavy weight of emotion; the sympathetic looks from the nurse’s and my mum and dad’s friends; and the pained look which was never quite covered by my mum’s smile . . .

I didn’t tell my dad about what I’d overheard. The moment we go home that day, I pushed the DVD my mum had given me into the player and started to watch the first episodes of Kinetica. I instantly fell in love with it. I loved the exaggerated characters, the cheesy songs and the constant stream of jokes and surprises. For the first time in weeks, I found myself smiling and laughing and when my mum really was . . . (gone) . . . it was the only thing which kept me going.

I followed the series eagerly and six years’ later I’m still watching each episode and buying all the DVDs. Every time I feel sad I just put on a bit of Kinetica and I feel better in a matter of minutes. I’m always looking forward to watching the next episode and finding out what will happen next to the gang of alien-fighting supernatural teens.

Or I was.

Who am I kidding? I need Kinetica! It’s the only reason I can live! What am I going to do without it? Only a few hours ago in Art, I’d remembered how much the cartoon had helped me cope with my mum’s death and how much I’d relied on it ever since. I don’t know why but I freaked out and scribbled paint all over the portrait I’d been working on for weeks, splattering it all over the desk and Kelly’s shirt. Neither she nor the teacher was too pleased, but I couldn’t exactly explain it to them, could I?

Then, to make matters worse, Mr Dowson decided to tell the class how some people (he looked at me) weren’t trying their best and that their Biology marks were slipping and unless they got their act back together, they would be facing extra homework and a long chat with their parents.

So I come out of Biology feeling utterly depressed and deflated and wondering why anyone would even dream of stopping them making Kinetica. It’s just not fair! I keep thinking.

I find myself hitting something hard and I fly backwards onto the floor. I hear a crash and a grunt and a muttered apology. Looking up, I see Jaden Cooper holding out a hand to help me up.

My stomach lurches. It’s only the guy I’ve been crushing on since Year Seven who I’ve charged into headfirst. It’s the first time he’s probably actually noticed me and where am I? Only sprawled out on the floor, my mascara running from built up tears and – knowing my luck – showing off my knickers. Oh, bloody hell, can this day get any worse?

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