Child's Play

It's nothing to do with the movie Childs Play.

Isla Giusti is a normal girl. With a normal childhood. Or so it seems....

First book in "Her Life" series.

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2. Chapter 2.

It’s been four years. since my mummy disappeared and came back again. I’m 10 now. I hold Scruff still as the vet injects him. He’s got to have an operation. Because he’s old. And fat. And lazy. And because our neighbour’s female dog had puppies the other day and they look like Scruff. My mummy’s at home cleaning the house. My dad is at work at the factory. It’s a toy factory. He gets to bring home spares.

“Alright, miss Isla, I’m going to start the operation, are you going to sit in the waiting room or will you be going?”

“I’m going to the shops. I might come back after that or I’ll wait till Scruff is better.”

“We’ll ring you’re mobile when he’s ready for pick up.” She smiles at me. Scruff has had fifteen operations in the space of three years. I smile at her, pick up my bag and walk out. I check my list.

To do list:

Buy vegetables Buy meat Buy cheese and milk and maybe a chocolate mouse. Get a hair cut appointment for my dad. Drop off Scruff.

“Not much then.” I say to myself. I cross off Drop off Scruff.

I walk out of the shopping centre with the bags. I stick them on my bike and cycle home. I push them through the Scruff Flap and cycle to pick up Scruff.

“Isla, what are you doing here? You’re Uncles came to pick Scruff up for you?” My eyes Widen. The Gasconi brothers. My uncles. The guys that were in the mafia.

“Oh, did they? Oh yes, I remember, I got a text about ten minutes ago saying that. I must’ve forgotten.” I try to sound calm but the vet sees through my disguise.

“Isla, is everything ok?”

“Yes Lisa. Have a nice evening.” I walk out of the vets and cycle home as fast as I can. I jump off my bike and leave it laying in the garden. I scrape my knee as I climb over the back gate on my way to the garage. My dad’s rebuilding his car. Phew. He’s home. I think. He turns as he hears me come.

“Isla!” His eyes widen.

“What?”

“What happened to your knee?” He exclaims. The adrenaline of cycling and running slows down. I start to feel the pain.

“I scraped it on the gate. What do you expect? It’s a tall gate.” I say.

“Why are you in such a hurry? Normally you stop by Ye old Sweets Shoppe.

“The vets told me my ‘Uncles’ came to collect Scruff today!” His eyes widen once again.

“Oh Isla. Come here.” He holds me tight. I won’t cry. “We’ll tell your mother when she’s done with the housework.” I nod. “Pass me that wrench.” My hand hovers over it. “Yep that’s the one.” I hand him it. I love helping him fix the car. He said when it’s done I can have it. He’ll teach me how to drive then it’s mine.

“Isla, Chris, dinner time!” I exchange a hungry look with my dad and we race inside. Spaghetti and meatballs are on the table, just begging to be eaten. I twirl the pasta with my fork and slurp it into my mouth.

“Where’s Scruff? Normally you can hear him a mile away when he’s coming home from the vets.” Says my mother.

“Someone collected him. Saying they were Isla’s Uncles.” My mother gasps. We eat in silence until my mother speaks again.

“How was work?” She asks my father.

“Delightful. There’s a new toy that came out today. It’s like an octopus but it actually swims in water. And the case is an octopus stuffed toy.” My eyes widen. How I’ve longed for a toy octopus. It would complete my under the sea collection.  My father disappears for a moment and re-appears with the octopus. I start smiling from ear-to-ear. He hands me the octopus and I exclaim my thanks as my mother clears the table for dessert. She brings through my favourite: Crostata di Frutta. That’s a fruit and custard tart. I dig in straight away. I want to savour every mouth-watering bite but I desperately want to put my octopus with my other under the sea animals and take photos of the scene I set. See I love photography. I love photographing my animals in different scenes. I finish and run upstairs.

My room is tidy but there are animal scenes everywhere. I run to my underwater scene. I carefully place my octopus then pick up my camera. I take photos from all possible angles. I plug my camera into my computer and print the pictures into a collage. I frame it and hang it above my under water creatures.

“Isla! Isla, Christina from school is here to see you!” I run to the landing and see my best friend standing there. She’s blonde with blue eyes and always wears yellow even at school she wears it with her uniform.

“Isla!” She shouts.

“Chrissie!” I run downstairs to greet her. She’s wearing a yellow school uniform. “Chrissie why are you wearing a uniform?”

“I’m being sent to boarding school. Luckily the uniform is yellow!” She smiles.

“Boarding school? Why and where?” I can’t lose my best friend.

“St Christine’s day and Boarding school for the Dramatically inclined.” She says, seeing my face drop she stops smiling. “What’s up?”

“You’re leaving. Everyone at school hates me or pretends I don’t exist- you’re the only friend I’ve got!” I say trying not to cry.

“Oh Isla! Really? Come here.” She pulls me into a hug. “You act like it’s the end of the world. You didn’t even let me tell you...” I stop crying.

“Tell me what?”

“Never mind.” She’s teasing now.

“Tell me.”

“I’m only going to the day school part of it and I got you an amazing birthday present.” I smile.

“But my birthday’s tomorrow.”

“Well I wanted to make sure it arrived!” She giggles. “Want to go to that sweet shop down the road?”

“Sure! Mum, dad I’m going out!” I run out and lock the door. We practically skip to the shop. No one stares, it’s a friendly neighbour hood. “Will I still see you at weekends then?”

“Course, silly! You can’t get rid of me that easily!” She laughs.

“Darn.” I say, pretending.

“Hey!” She turns to face me to tell me off but she walks into the door of the shop. “Ow!” I giggle. “Don’t laugh at me! That hurt!”

“Aw, diddums, did ‘ickle bwaby Chwissy hwurt hwer ickle nosey?” She bursts out laughing.

“Are we going to buy something or not?” She says, blushing. I laugh and we walk into the shop.

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