Flying High

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  • Publiceret: 6 aug. 2013
  • Opdateret: 6 aug. 2013
  • Status: Færdig
Cora's life has been all about music; playing, singing and writing. Her inspiration? Her mother.
But when Cora's mom dies suddenly in an accident, Cora's world falls apart.
What will it take for Cora to hear the music again?


1. Flying High One Shot

May 18, 2011


"Where is she?" I mumbled to myself.


I peered out from behind the curtain and saw the empty spot between my dad and my older brother. 


Turning around, I resumed the path I had been pacing for the past fifteen minutes. 


"Come on, Mom." I whispered.


It was the annual school concert and my solo was next and my mom hasn't shown up yet, which was strange. Very strange. 


This was my final concert before I graduated and went to high school and my mom had been practicing with me for weeks. Plus, she promised she would be here. And she always kept her promises.


"Cora, you're on in thirty seconds." Mrs. Reynolds said. 


I nodded and took my place on the left side of the stage. 


Clapping sounded throughout the auditorium and I took a deep breath and toyed with the necklace hanging on my neck. It was a simple, yet elegant butterfly; a gift from my mother for my birthday last year. 


The moment I stepped out on stage was the best feeling in the world. Some people hated the feeling of everyone's eyes on you, but I thrive under the pressure. 


I adjusted the microphone and waited for the music to play. 


I remember years ago, 
Someone told me I should take caution when it comes to love;
I did, I did

You were strong and I was not.
My illusion, my mistake
I was careless, I forgot.
I did.

And now that all is done, 
There is nothing to say.
You have gone and so effortlessly,
You have won. 
You can go ahead and tell them.

I continued the song and halfway through movement caught my eye. I turned slightly to see my dad leaving his chair and talking to someone on his phone. 

Impossible, impossible, 
Impossible, impossible
Impossible, impossible
Impossible, impossible 

I remember years ago, 
Someone told me I should take caution when it comes to love;
I did.


The music ended, but my eyes were glued on my dad. He turned back to where my either was seated and said something. Then the two of them got up and left the auditorium.


Quickly, I left the stage and ran past my friends to find my family. They had never left any shows before and that combined with the fact that my mom wasn't here left a sinking feeling in my stomach. 


"Dad!" I called when I caught sight of him. I slowed to a walk as I noticed the look of worry on their faces. "What's going on?" 


"I just received a call saying that mom was in a car accident," my dad informed me. 


"What? Is she okay? How'd it happen?" I asked in a rush. 


"She was taken to the hospital and she's in critical condition," Dad said. 


"Oh my God." Adam wrapped his arm around me as my world fell apart. "What are we waiting for? We have to get to the hospital!" 


"Cora! What's wrong?" Lisa asked as she and Mike, my two closest friends, ran down the hall to me. 


"My mom was in a car accident; can you tell Mrs. Reynolds where I went." I called as our family walked outside. 


"We hope she's okay!" Mike called. 


The ride to the hospital was probably the most nerve wracking ten minutes of my life. 


A second seemed like a minute and a minute seemed like hours; I was beginning to think we'd never arrive. 


The three of us rushed into the emergency room. "Maya Brent." Dad said to the desk clerk. 


"I'm sorry sir, but visitors aren't allowed in the room right now." The woman stated. 


"That's my wife!" My dad shouted. "And I want to see her now." 


"Sir, you need to calm down. The doctors are doing everything they can, but they won't be able to do their job if you're in the room." A nurse said.


My dad opened his mouth to protest, but I stopped him. "Dad, let's go sit. We'll see her when they're finished." I tugged on his sleeve.


Adam sat on one side of my dad and I sat on the other. I rested my head on his shoulder as we waited for news on her condition. 


Adam's leg couldn't stop bouncing, a tell-tale sign he was nervous. I was clasping my hands tightly and my dad was staring at the floor. Each of us were lost in our own worlds, only to be brought back to reality by a doctor's voice. 


"Mr. Brent," the doctor, Dr. Addy, according to his name tag, said. 


Simultaneously, the three of us stood up. I studied Dr. Addy's face and the hope that my mom was alright, faded. 


"I'm sorry, but your wife didn't make it." Dr. Addy informed us. 


My stomach dropped and I felt like I was going to be sick. I gripped my dad's arm and looked up to see his face. He had gone pale and he grimaced, as if he had been punched in the stomach. 


"S-she's gone?" Adam asked his voice thick. 


"I'm truly sorry for your loss," Dr. Addy said. 


I shook my head, not believing what I was hearing. If I went into the other room right now, my mom would be there waiting to see us. 


And I was going to prove she was alive and well. 


Letting go of my dad's hand, I strode past the doctor to the door where Dr. Addy had come from. 


"Where are you going? You can't go back there!" Dr. Addy called.


Ignoring him, I pushed the doors open and walked down the hall until I saw couple of nurses wheeling a bed out of a room further down the hall. 


I caught a glimpse of the person on the bed and froze when I recognized her. "Mom?" I began walking towards the bed. "Mom!"  


One of the nurses turned and tried to stop me, "Miss, please."


I looked at the bed expecting to see my mom looking up at me and smiling telling me everything would be alright, but instead I saw bloodied sheets covering her pale body. 


"No!" I screamed. "Mom!" 


I felt arms around my waist pulling me away from my mom. I wiggled, trying to get out of the grasp on my waist. "Mom! Don't go!" I yelled. 


"Cora, calm down." A voice said. 


"No! She can't be gone!" I cried. 


"Shh, sweetheart. It's going to be okay." I was pressed into a hug, my dad's cologne surrounding me. "We're all going to be okay. I promise." 




July 10, 2013


"You're signing up for this whether you like it or not." Lisa said as she slammed a paper down in front of me. 


I glanced at the paper before pushing it back to her. "Not going to happen," I answered and went back to painting my nails. 


"Cora, this is an amazing opportunity and your mom would have wanted you to follow your dreams." Mike said softly. 


"My dreams are what got her killed in the first place." I snapped. 


"It was a freak accident. There's no way you could have known she was going to be late to the concert and a drunk driver would crash into her," Lisa said. "It's not your fault whatsoever; it was the driver's fault."


I sighed; I knew it technically wast my fault, but I couldn't help but feel that if my mom wasn't on her way to my concert, she wouldn't have been in the accident.


"Come on, Cora. You could completely win this competition without even trying." Lisa told me. 


"I highly doubt that," I rolled my eyes. "I haven't sung since she passed away."


"Talent like yours doesn't disappear." Mike pointed out. 


"We're not going to go away until you agree to at least audition." Lisa smirked at me. 


"You should do it," Adam said and I looked up to see him standing at my door. "Mom would have loved for you to audition." 


"Even if I did audition, what would I sing?" I asked. 


"Write an original," Adam suggested. "It would make your audition stand out." 


"I-I don't know guys; I don't think I can do this." I said. 


"We'll give you a day until you make up your mind." Lisa told me and the three of them left my room. 


I laid back onto my bed and let out a breath. They didn't understand.


My mom was the reason I started singing and playing instruments in the first place and now that she was gone, it wasn't the same. 


I used to be happy singing and after my mom died the happiness disappeared. The months after my mom passed away were the toughest. I was depressed and it was a while before I was myself again. But the part of me that was music never seemed to revive. 


But my friends and brother did have a point; my mom always told me to follow my dreams no matter what. 


"Ugh!" I groaned and pushed the heels of my hands against my eyes. 


Rolling off my bed, I crossed my room to my mom's old jewelry box. I opened the box and looked at the necklaces sitting inside. I touched the butterfly necklace laying against my skin, remembering when she gave it to me. 


She had always called me her 'little butterfly' and said that I could do whatever I wanted, I just had to dream big enough and work hard. 


I placed one of my mom's lockets down and as I did I heard a dull clunk as if the box was hollow.


Frowning, I pulled at the edge of the box where the wood and the velvet lining met. "What the--," I mumbled; the inside of the jewelry box had tilted up.


I pulled it all of the way out and looked inside the hollow box. Inside there was an envelope with my name written on it. Almost immediately I recognized my mother's handwriting.


I opened the envelope and proceeded to read the letter. 


My dearest daughter,

If you have found this letter than I must apologize for not having explained this while I was there with you.

I was diagnosed with cancer in January 2011 and the doctors told me that I had less than six months to live. The cancer was too far along to do anything about; chemotherapy and surgery wouldn't have done anything to help me. The reason I didn't tell anyone is because I wanted to live the rest of my life happily with my family and not worried about what was to come. I hope you all can understand and forgive me. 

I am writing you this letter because I know if I have passed on, you most likely have stopped singing. And if you have stopped singing ask your brother to slap you for me. 

Whether or not I am next to you or miles away I want you to keep singing. It's your passion, your love and your life. Keep singing, if not for yourself than at least for me. 

You're my little butterfly and no matter what I want you to spread your wings and fly as far and as high as you can. 

I love you all so much, Mom.


I didn't realize I was crying until a few tears dropped onto the letter from my mom. 


"Dad!" I ran downstairs and handed the letter to my dad who was sitting at the table with my brother and two friends. "I just found this and you have to read it, now."


I wiped the tears as my brother and dad read the letter, their eyes filling with tears as well. 


They finished reading and Adam walked toward me before punching my arm. "What was that for?!" I asked. 


"Just doing what mom told me to," Adam grinned. 


"Even now your mom never ceases to surprise me," my dad shook his head. 


"Lisa, sign me up for the X-Factor audition. I'm going to make my mom proud." I stated. 




The next two months went by in a blur. I was writing and composing the song I would be singing for my audition. Adam, Mike and Lisa were by my side and helped me whenever I was stuck. 


All the auditions this year were to be a full song which I was extremely excited about. 


And the audition day was finally here and I was a bundle of nerves. This was going to be the first time I sang since my mom passed away. 


"Stop pacing, you're making me dizzy!" Lisa clamped her hands on my shoulders to prevent me from moving anymore. 


A stage manager came up to me and told me I was up next. 


"Oh my God. Why did I let you guys talk me into this?!" I asked. 


"Because you need to do this. Plus after you win the competition, you're going to be famous." Dad said. 


"I have to get through the auditions first." I reminded him.


"Details, details." He waved away my comment. 


I turned to Lisa, "How do I look?" 


"Smoking hot," she answered. Lisa had helped me pick out my outfit and do my makeup and hair. 


I was wearing a pair of high waisted black shorts with a comic book print crop top; I also wore a pair of combat boots. Lisa had curled my hair and I did my makeup mostly natural with a bright pink lip. 


The contest that was on stage walked off and now it was my turn. "I can do this," I mumbled to myself. "No I can't." I turned around, but was faced with a wall of my family and friends. 


"Go!" They all said and Mike pushed me onto the stage.


Catching myself before I tripped, I walked out to the mark in the center of the stage. 


"Hi, how are you?" Simon asked. 


"I'm good, how are you?" I answered. 


"Not too bad," he said. "Now what's your name and age?" 


"My name is Cora Brent and I am seventeen years old." I said. Once I said my age I heard some catcalls from the audience. 


"And what will you be singing?" Simon asked.


"I will be singing a song I wrote for my mom," I responded. 


"May I ask why you wrote a song for your mom?" Demi asked. 


"About two years ago she was hit by a drunk driver and she died. My mom is the reason why I started singing and got interested in music. And this is the first time since her death that I will be singing." I explained. 


"I'm so sorry," Demi said. "Good luck." 


"Thanks." I nodded off stage and I heard the music begin to play. 


"Mama told me not to waste my life,
She said, 'Spread your wings my little butterfly.'
Don't let what they say keep you up at night.
And if they give you shh, then they can walk on by."


I walked over to the right side of the stage as I started the first verse, 


"My feet, feet can't touch the ground.
And I can't hear a sound, but you just keep on runnin' up your mouth.

Walk, walk on over there. 
And I'm too fly too care.
Oh yeah."

I walked back to center stage and got ready to do the dance Lisa and I choreographed. 

"Your words don't mean a thing.
I'm not listening, keep talking, all I know is...

Mama told me not to waste my life.
She said spread your wings my little butterfly."

Don't let what they say keep you up at night, cause they can't detain you.
Cause wings are made to fly.
And we don't let nobody bring us down, 
Don't matter what you say it won't hurt me. 
Don't matter if I fall from the sky, cause wings are made to fly."


I strutted over to the left side of the stage, "Hey! Hey!


I'm firing up on that runway.
You know we're gunna get there someday.
But we don't need no ready, steady, go, no!"


On each syllable of the last four words I swung my hips from side to side. 


"Talk, talk turns into air.
And I don't even care, oh yeah.

You're words don't mean a thing, 
I'm not listening, keep talking. 
All I know is..."


Once more, I returned to the center of the stage and began the chorus. As I did, I noticed most of the audience was on their feet, clapping to the beat of the music and that made me grin.


"Mama told me not to waste my life.
She said spread your wings my little butterfly.


Don't let what they say keep you up at night, cause they can't detain you.
Cause wings are made to fly.
And we don't let nobody bring us down, 
Don't matter what you say it won't hurt me. 
Don't matter if I fall from the sky, cause wings are made to fly."


"I don't hear no one sayin' hey, hey, hey, hey!" I clapped to the music and the audience followed.


"I don't hear no one sayin' hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey!
You better keep on walking, I don't hear your talking boy.
You better keep on walking, I don't talking, boy!


"You're words don't mean a thing. I'm not listening, they're just like water off my wings!" I hit the last note and held it as long as possible. "Oh, woah! Spread your wings my little butterfly! Don't let what they say keep you up at night and they can't detain you-u!


"Cause wings are made fly and we don't let nobody bring us down," I slapped my hand to my hip. "Don't matter what you say it can't hurt me. Don't matter if they fall from the sky; these wings are made to fly.


The music faded and applause filled the room. I looked around to see many people on their feet and when I looked at the judges I saw they were on their feet as well. 


I looked to my left and saw my family and friends smiling and clapping. 


"That was incredible," Demi said. "You have an amazing voice and you are hot! I think you are going to go far." 


"I couldn't agree more. You have talent and I can't wait to see more from you," Kelly Rowland told me. 


"Thank you," I replied.


"So much talent in such a small body. I'm speechless, just wow." Paulina Rubino said. 


As the audience's cheers faded, I bit my lip as I waited for Simon to comment on my performance. 


"I don't usually say this, but I think we may have just found our season 3 winner." Simon said. 


The crowd erupted and I stopped breathing. 


"Time to vote," Demi said. "I think we all agree it's a..."


"Yes!" All four judges said simultaneously. 


"Oh my God! Thank you so much!" I thanked them. 


I ran off stage and was tackled into a group hug. 


"You killed it!" Lisa yelled in my ear. 


"Congratulations!" Mike and Adam said. 


"Dad, are you crying?" I asked. 


He nodded, "I'm just so proud of you. And I know your mom is proud of you." 


I hugged him, "I know." 


I could feel my mom with me up on that stage and I know she'd be proud of me for finally coming out of my cage and 'spreading my wings'.  


And that was better than anything I could've asked for. 

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