Inevitable- Carla Chase

It's basically a story I wrote about three years ago. It is a fantasy about a girl in care who finds out she's something else.., made for teens. Not a fairy story. Would like some general feedback on it, really. :)

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7. Auditions from hell

 

So we are on the way to see my mum and persuade her to let a couple of beginners decorate her gorgeous castle’s basement.  Sounds like mission impossible, I know! But we are off to try anyway; Tai follows me in to my mother’s seventh sitting room. Yeah, and by the way she has nine. NINE! We walk up to mum who is sitting on a gorgeous designer rock, and what am I saying! It is a rock! She looks towards us and I feel instantly depressed. How come I didn’t inherit her good looks!

“Hello darling, have you come to see me?” she asks. I shuffle nervously around trying to remember how to start a conversation. Tai nudges me as my mum looks impatient. Turns out my mum isn’t the biggest fan of Tai. She doesn’t like his laid back behaviour, I suppose!

“Uh yeah, sure, of course” I say nervously. I clear my throat. “Well actually I, I mean we, want to ask you something” I say and show off my best smile. My mother eyes me suspiciously and lowers the book she was reading.

“What are you up to, Carla?” she says.

“Me, nothing! How could you think such a thing?” I smile. Mum turns to Tai.

“Tai, what is Carla up to?” she says and I see her eyes narrow as she stares at Tai. Tai is shuffling around nervously obviously aware of my mother’s threatening tone.

“Llllaaura is nnot up to anything, your majesty. We are here to help you!” Tai finally stutters and I look at him humorously.

“Well spit it out then!” my mother’s says impatiently and I turn to take over Tai’s rubbish speech.

“We want to do a decoration project on the basement” I say and my mum immediately frowns.

“Come on, spill. Why?” she says.

“ Oh, yeah. I suppose you wouldn’t know!” I say. Let the lying begin! “When I thought I was a human, at school I was amazing at art! Oh yeah, I got A*’s all the time. I was going to sell some of my artwork. Truth is I miss it; I wanted to be an artist when I was older but obviously I can’t continue it now. But I thought I could do some decorating on the side. Is that ok?” I ask and turn to see Tai staring at me in awe and my mum smiling.

“Wow darling, you really are a very talented girl, aren’t you! Can’t believe you are good at art, I was always rubbish and I’m sure Ben was bad as well...” she trails off and I look at her fiercely.

“Who in the Sam heck is Ben!” I shout and my mum blushes.

“Uh, your real father...” my mum says and I almost faint. Whoa, I forgot I had a real father. Weird how you can forget things like that!

“My father! Well where is he! I demand to know where he is!” I shout. My mum looks at me as if she doesn’t know whether to tell me or not. I raise my eyebrows.

“You are not going to tell me? How could you mum!” I say and my mum puts her hand out to stop me.

“Ok, ok. I will tell you but you have to listen right to the end before you make judgements, ok?” she say and I not my head in agreement.

“Your father is called Ben Addison Chase. That is how you got the name ‘Chase’. I met him at one of your cousins’ mermantion and we fell in love. I was with him for a couple of years but we never married. He thought that marriage was a waste of time but now I know he just said that because he didn’t want the commitment. I told him I was pregnant and he didn’t like it. He said that I should get rid of you because he had a feeling you were going to be dangerous. I didn’t understand what he meant but I get it now. Obviously he had a feeling you were going to have these powers you have and this made him scared. I thought he was just being cowardly and mean, so I chucked him. I said that I would have the baby and he could get lost. I’m sorry Carla I know I should have listened to him more and seen how he knew these things before I dumped him but I just thought it was like the marriage thing. That could have been part of it as well because he seemed to be really anxious about commitment and I don’t think he wanted to tie himself down to one girl for the rest of his life. Obviously with a baby at hand, he would feel guilt tripped in to doing exactly that and I think sending him away was the best thing. He never saw you when you were born which I think is a good thing. He couldn’t get attached you see and I didn’t want him to hurt himself that way. He wasn’t ready for me and he wasn’t ready for you. I thought I was doing what was right, Carla. You have to believe me. But I don’t want you to see him, because if you do he might get too attached. That could hurt him, you and me. Please Carla don’t try find him.” She says as a tear trickles down her cheek, I could tell that telling me that was painful for her as the memories came flooding back to her. I reach out and hug her. She pulls away.

“What was that for?” she says with a look of confusion on her face. I smile sympathetically.

“Because, mum. You told me the truth even though you thought I would be mad at you. That is all I could ever ask for.” I say and this time it is my mum’s turn to hug me.

“I love you, kiddo.” She says and I turn round to see Tai standing awkwardly behind us.

“Uh, hi Tai!” I say and he smiles and embarrassed smile.

“ Oh hey, so congratulations you have a dad you never knew about! So what about this decoration project?” he says impatiently.

I narrow my eyes at him and he pushes his hand in front of him.

“Ok, ok, I get it private family moment, sorry I will be over there” he says and points towards a nearby rock.

“No, no Tai it’s fine. But mum, what do you think about the art project?” I ask. There is a short pause.

“That’s fine dear, I won’t get in the way” mum promised.

“Aw thanks mum!” I say. “Oh, don’t worry we won’t mess anything up and I won’t try and find my dad. I have everyone I need right here”

“Aw sweetie, thank you so much. Well I better be off and by the way” mum starts saying and her voice becomes sterner. “You are not to step out of the palace grounds until the HippoDuctyl have surrendered or we have them killed or kept under lock and key. Do you agree?”

“Sure mum, whatever” I say and a stab of guilt punctures my stomach. I mean I’m not really breaking any rules. I’m not going out of castle grounds; I’m just building an army. Nothing wrong with that right? I follow Tai out of the door and he mimics someone fainting.

“Whoa, your mum sure knows how to make people feel guilty doesn’t she. I nearly surrendered right there right then. Honestly, if she finds out, I am dead meat. She doesn’t like me anyway and I’m sure she will find a reason to blame it all on me” he says and I am about to interrupt but I realise that is probably true. My mum thinks Tai is a worthless, stroppy, stupid, weird, poor, peasant and I don’t think planning to get her precious daughter to risk life and limb in the process of finding an army of rampaging aggressive mermen is going to get him top of her nice kid list. Am I risking life, limb and my friend in the process?

“Tai?” I say and he swivels round to face me.

“Yes, your majesty?” he says happily and I again feel a tinge of guilt at the thought of losing my friend just so I can avoid being kidnapped.

“I don’t want to lose you Tai and I think that you are right. My mum is sure to go bananas if she finds out and you will probably be the one she will blame. She might not let me see you.” I say and hold my breath as I wait for his answer.

“Carla. Carla Chase. I am Tai Benjamin Bean Kingfisher Sea and when I have a friend I do not give upon them. You know that if you do this by yourself. You could be risking your life! Imagine what the HippoDuctyl would do if they found you making an army. I’m not just saying this as a friend, Carla; I’m saying it as a merman who can’t risk their world by leaving the weapon the enemies need unprotected.” Tai says and I know I can’t change his mind.

“You are so stubborn!” I laugh and pull him in for a hug. He laughs back.

The next day we set to work on our ‘project’. Tai has managed to spread the word about the auditions and the first guy comes in. His name is Jay. He has spiky jet black hair and a grin that would spook the HippoDuctyl so bad they would be running away at first sight. Perfect.

“Now when do I start?” he says after a few fighting demonstrations. Nearly making Tai faint when he tripped him up, threw him on the floor and put him in the headlock in about two seconds flat. Of course, we said that we would call him soon and put him on the list. The second guy was an ex army man from Bristol who recently found out he was a merman and had to quit his job. He said he had been looking for a job for ages and that this was perfect for him. He got the job. So did twelve more men and two mermaids.

The next day went even better and Tai was feeling like a wimp. I could see him bodybuilding quietly in the corner after being shown up by a mass of potential army men. In a week we had hundreds of applicants and we were ecstatic. We figured in a few more days we would have enough for an army and then we could tell mum all about it. By then the army will look even more impressive and mum could not possibly be mad. Besides, the army could then get the HippoDuctyl to surrender. Everything would be fine! Wouldn’t it?

I headed in to the newly decorated basement, Tai figured that we should do that as well as make the army because otherwise it would have been a waste of all the underwater paints mum got us. Tai was sitting on the desk fidgeting.

“What is with the ants in your pants?” I ask and Tai jumps up immediately.

“Ants, where? Oh my gosh, I hate ants!” he shrieked and I burst out laughing.

“No! I meant why are you fidgeting!” I say.

“Well next time try get to the point quicker! And anyway it’s just that I forgot to feed Bailey this morning and I’m worried about her” he says.

“Who is Bailey?” I ask.

“The love of my life of course!” he says and for some reason it feels like he just punctured my heart.

“Bailey is your Girlfriend?” I ask nervously.

“My Dolphin of course! Girlfriend! Funny!

“Yeah ha-ha go ahead and feed Bailey!” I say and he smiles.

“Thanks but the next applicant is coming in a minute and I am meant to be protecting you!” he worries.

“Hey, I can look after myself you know, go and feed the dolphin!” I laugh. Tai pauses for a second as if weighing up the alternatives but gladly nods his head in agreement.

“Ok, fine. But come find me if it gets too much, ok?” he says and I nod impatiently and shoo him out the door. The first applicant comes in. He is a martial art expert from China and he has hundreds of medals sewn on to his jacket. I praise him and tell him we will be n touch. The next applicant is a man in probably his late 20’s. He has glossy blond hair and a pale complexion but he has wrinkles on his forehead that tell me he might have been in a lot of stress.

“Hi, I’m Alvin” he says with a tone of voice that could make a chimp fall to sleep of boredom. I laugh as I remember Tai calling humans ‘chimps’.

“Hello, so what type of skills do you think you could bring to a battle, Alvin?” I read off my cue card. The man doesn’t say anything and just nods towards my desk. I smile impatiently waiting for an answer.

“Yes?” I ask but Alvin just does what he did before. He nods at my desk. I look down at the desk and too my astonishment find a letter in an envelope on the desk. It certainly was not there a minute ago!

“I have incredible speed. It was my special mermaid power. It would come in handy when in an army don’t you think?” he said but I had a serious amount of doubt rising in my stomach. There was something weird about this guy, almost something dark... I shook this feeling away and shook Alvin’s hand.

“Congratulations! You are definitely in our army, I will contact you soon.” I say and Alvin scuttles out of the room without another word. Odd. I’m about to call in the next applicant when I notice the letter Alvin put on the desk is still there. I tear it open and pull out the letter. 

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