The Ellie Erwin Effect

Ellie tries and fails to deal with a loss in her life, and creates a world where everything has to be right – in her way. When she meets Ruby Parks, an outgoing and characteristic person, she learns that everything can’t be controlled by drawings and categories. As Ruby and Ellie form a friendship beyond a comic book world, Ellie slowly learns to accept reality, and maybe find love. // Participating in Endfic Competition with option 2.

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2. CHAPTER TWO | Fire-breathing dragons carry the world

 

Crying wasn’t an option, digging a hole in the ground was definitely out of the question, so I just went home after Ruby left me. But she didn’t leave, not like that – we weren’t even friends so she didn’t have to stay with me.

“You’re home early, “ and Rocky Barnes was a minor character in everything going on at the moment, but he was my stepdad too, and I couldn’t just ignore him. “Yeah, we got a cancelled schedule, “ lying had always been pretty easy towards Rocky. The tall, gangly man could have been the side kick of a superhero, if it wasn’t because he lacked a sense of justice. It wasn’t like he was mean or anything, he was an ordinary man who paid his bills and never ever did anything to hurt anyone. But if I got mugged, he would probably tell me everything would be okay, and then move on. Nothing about finding the guilty and give me back my money. That kind of actions just didn’t fit a man in a cape, so I drew Rocky like he was. A tall, gangly man always wearing hoodies that made him seem even smaller.

“Everything okay? “ he asked, but didn’t look up from the laptop screen. Rocky was a writer who never sold any books. He just wrote and wrote and no one accepted it.

“I’m fine, “ lie number two, and Rocky still didn’t notice anything. Maybe it was because of his lack of justice, he really didn’t care if I lied or not.

Returning to my room always seemed like a whole new experience, it was pretty awesome if you asked me. It had so many impressions tucked up inside a small bedroom, and it was overwhelming. Stickers and posters from bands and TV-shows covered most of the wall above my bed, picture painted by Rosie covered everything else everywhere.

She loved colors and she said I didn’t, so she just painted a bunch of stuff for me through the years. It didn’t matter though, because I really liked her paintings, even the most colorful ones.

I had my own drawing of Rosie, it was actually in colors. She was a dragon, not like Mary Grayson would have been, but a real, beautiful dragon. Rosie’s scale were made of crimson colors and her grey eyes were the kindest, but still warning you to take a step back. Her wings were huge, and she could carry the world even though she shouldn’t have to.

“Back in Fantasia are we? “ I probably was.

“Sorry, “ I looked up at my older sister, Rosie Erwin. She sat down by the bed, folding her arms as she peaked over my shoulder. As she raised an eyebrow of my drawing, I blushed. “What? “

“I always said I wanted to be a princess, not the freaking dragon, “ she complained. After a second of letting me sweat, she cracked a smile. “Oh come on, you know I’m joking. “

I think she’s – and zap. Super Evil Me couldn’t get to me when I was with Rosie, and I could spend all day with her, if she didn’t have to leave all the time.

“I met a new girl at school today, “ I don’t know why I told her that. Maybe my definition of meeting a new person wasn’t correct or something. “Who is she? “ Rosie seemed curious, so I just told her about Ruby Parks. It turned out I didn’t really have much to say, other that this new girl thought the world would end in a zombie apocalypse. Stupid me, she definitely didn’t classify as meeting a new person. By the details I knew of Ruby, she was more of a watched-from-afar-person.

“Where is she in all this? “ Rosie ignored my lack of knowledge. Instead she gestured at my drawing shelf. A large, long wooden shelf above my bed, filled with sketchbooks dating back to 28.10.11. A sort of record of people I’d met.

I frowned. I hadn’t really thought about that. Where did Ruby fit in? She didn’t just seem as a minor character, and she definitely didn’t seem like the villain or some bad dude. But where should I put her?

“I don’t know, “ I finally answered. Rosie’s eyes turned big. “You really haven’t thought about it? “

I shook my head.

“Well then, “ Rosie sat up on her knees. “This calls for a celebration. “

“Oh stop it, “ I mumbled. It wasn’t funny, not at all. “I need to give her a role. “

Rosie got serious, her face melted like the dragon fire burnt away, and she just looked kind of sad. “I know you have to, “ she said.

I found a sketchbook and a pencil, turning my back to Rosie. It was stupid, but I felt hurt. After a while,  I couldn’t hear her breathe anymore. I was alone in my room, again.

 

***

The night sky was filled with dying stars.

I never really liked to watch dying stuff, and the possibility of the stars I saw, maybe already being dead, made me hate it even more. Rosie had painted my ceiling with all kinds of glimmering, dead triangles in the shapes of stars. I’d told her to make a new motif, but she never did and therefore I had to look at the starry sky every single night.

I turned over in my bed, trying to find a more comforting painting among the walls, but in the dark it was hard to see anything else but the neon colors at the ceiling.  

After twisting and turning for a couple of minutes, I finally decided that tonight wasn’t meant for sleeping. Sometimes you just had to do something else, when thoughts got like a swarm inside your head. It wasn’t even uncomfortable thoughts, okay maybe some of them, like when I thought about how much Ruby Parks and Rosie Erwin hated me after the day’s episodes. But most of the stuff going on inside my head, was centering about unknown subjects. It was like I couldn’t grab them before they were gone, I just knew I thought about everything at once and it kind of gave me a bad headache.

Rocky was asleep on the couch. I wouldn’t wake up him up, but being alone didn’t sound great either. It was a dilemma that turned out as it always did, I woke up Rocky.

“Hey, “ he frowned, and rubbed his eyes as if he hadn’t been asleep since dinner. Then again, he was just as much awake at night as me. “You can’t sleep? “

An obvious question, and he didn’t wait for an answer. “Wanna watch a movie? “

Normally, I would have said yes, but my thoughts were too cloudy for a plot line right now, and I just had to talk. Maybe about Ruby Parks and her missing role.

“If you had a character, “ I hesitated, but beside Rosie, Rocky was probably the best to ask this question. “And you didn’t know which part of the story she interacted with, what would you do about her? “

Rocky frowned even more, his forehead turning into a gathering of concern.

“Well, “ he stated. “If she didn’t matter to my story I wouldn’t have her a part of it. “

I felt a bit disappointed. “But, “ Rocky looked into the roof, as if he were watching the night sky not reachable from inside the house. “If I like her, maybe I will try to become part of her story, if you get the point. “

I wasn’t sure I did, but I liked this answer way better than not being around Ruby.

As Rocky readied an old version of Robin Hood with Kevin Costner, I logged on my old laptop. My Facebook hadn’t been updated in ages, but I didn’t have any notification, which really was a relief. I hated the red icon always popping up, now I got to research in peace. I entered her name, Ruby Parks, in capital letters, I’d always liked everything written like that.

There was a lot of hits for Ruby Parks, but no one who even looked slightly as my Ruby Parks. She didn’t have Facebook. I tried to hide my disappointment for Rocky, but he was paying more attention to Morgan Freeman, getting out jail with Robin Hood, than me.  

I didn’t wanna google her, I really didn’t. What’s up Sherlock, getting scared? Super Evil Me was mocking me, but I wouldn’t give in. It was really getting out of hand if I googled her, and I didn’t need more people thinking I was really, really weird.

“I’ll make some popcorn, “ Rocky disrupted my thinking.

The Prince of Thieves had found the Sherwood Forest, and I tried exceptionally hard to focus on his agenda of saving the people of Nottingham, but my thoughts were only surrounding one subject, Ruby Parks. 

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