Saturday, May 28, 2011
Better Late Than Never... Freshman Year #2
After much ado, I have finally gotten around to this!!! (I still have my Winston story as well, I just need to get this one out of the way first.) I have to admit that I haven't gotten around to finishing this yet, but I'll keep working as I go along...
"A little higher, Steven," Elizabeth Wakefield shouted to her brother. Steven raised the banner he was holding, nearly falling off the ladder as he did so. Steven quickly steadied himself as he climbed down to admire his handiwork. The large purple and powder blue banner was now hung perfectly above the Wakefield's front door. "Welcome home, Jessica and Robin," Elizabeth stepped back as and read the banner aloud.
Robin, Elizabeth and Steven's cousin, was flying to Sweet Valley from Washington DC that afternoon. Her parents, both professors, were given a teaching assignment in Australia, so Robin was coming to stay with the Wakefields.
Jessica, Elizabeth's identical twin sister, had been in the hospital for the past three days. After a fight with Elizabeth, Jessica had gone out for a walk and been struck by a drunk driver. Her left ankle was shattered in the collision, and Elizabeth still felt guilty about it. In the days following Jessica's accident, Elizabeth had hardly left Jessica's side. Elizabeth had even slept at the hospital. Jessica, of course, had soaked up all of the attention. The doctor had not allowed Jessica to have visitors, so Elizabeth had decided to throw her a welcome home party, and it seemed to be the perfect excuse to introduce Robin to all of their friends. As they walked into the den, Steven and Elizabeth marveled at all of the get well gifts Jessica had received.
It seemed that every student at Sweet Valley High had wanted to wish Jessica a speedy recovery, and most of them had sent gifts as well. There were also tables full of flowers, and a large box of get well cards. The entire sofa was full of various teddy bears, and a large stuffed unicorn currently occupied Mr. Wakefield's favorite recliner. "Get Well Soon!" Elizabeth read the card on the unicorn, "We'll be cheering for you!" Steven didn't even bother to ask who the unicorn was from, they both knew that the Sweet Valley High cheerleading squad had delivered it personally the day before. "When did the doctor say Jess could go back to cheering?" Steven asked, helping himself to a bowl of chips that Elizabeth had set out for the guests who were due to arrive any minute.
"Next semester, at the earliest," Elizabeth replied, feeling a twinge of sadness. Jessica had been chosen for the Varsity cheer squad after a summer of complete dedication and hard work. Jess had never worked so hard for anything in her entire life, and it had all been ruined for her on the first day of school. A disastrous first performance had led to Jessica having a very embarrassing moment in front of the entire school. Jess had been very upset by all of this, but Elizabeth had cheered her up while she was in the hospital, and being hit by a car had actually made Jessica more popular than ever. Jessica was also very excited about Robin's visit, and she appreciated the chance to spend time with her cousin and sister.
"At least we finally get to spend some time with her," Steven said as he fluffed one of the couch pillows, "Even though she'll probably be expecting us to wait on her hand and foot." Elizabeth laughed along with him, but she also knew that he was fully serious. Jessica liked attention, and this was the perfect excuse for her to take advantage of a situation. It had been Jessica, in fact, who insisted that Elizabeth continue to plan Robin's welcoming party. Jessica would be on crutches for weeks, and she was going to be sleeping in the den until her cast came off, but she had insisted that a party for Robin was absolutely necessary.
Elizabeth had spent the entire afternoon cleaning the house. She had even tidied up Jessica's room so that Robin could sleep there. Elizabeth also set up a temporary bedroom in the den for Jessica, and Steven pitched in by hauling boxes of Jessica's possessions downstairs. "I've never seen Jess's room look so clean," Steven remarked as he packed up some of Jessica's bathroom necessities, "And yours is so...messy."
Elizabeth sighed as Steven went back downstairs. She though of all the reasons why she hadn't had time to clean her own room. In addition to recently starting high school, she had been hard at work repairing her relationship with Jessica. They had drifted apart over the summer, especially after Elizabeth had began dating Bruce Patman, a rich, popular, Sophomore. Elizabeth felt sad as she remembered how, only three days earlier, she had lost her virginity to Bruce. This had led to the twins having their worst fight ever. Jessica had left, and she had gotten lost as a terrible storm swept through Sweet Valley. Elizabeth still blamed herself for Jessica being hurt, but she quickly pushed that out of her head and prepared for what was sure to be an incredible party.
The doorbell rang, making Elizabeth jump. Steven answered it while Elizabeth ran downstairs and quickly set out a few bowls of chips on the food table. She had spent hours decorating the house, and she had spared no expense on the food, per Jessica's request. She had ordered twenty pizzas and made three different salads in addition to a variety of chips and pretzels, plus pigs in a blanket and baskets of steaming-hot garlic cheese bread. A four-tier cake sat on its own table beside all of this. Lila Fowler had donated it because, even though Jessica had been an embarrassment to her on the first day of school, Lila considered Jessica to be her best friend. Janet Howell, Lila's cousin and captain of the Varsity cheer squad, was first to arrive. She, too, had brought a gift for Jessica.
"Since we just won the regional competition, I'm in a forgiving mood," Janet announced as she strode confidently into the den. She grandly laid the gold medal she was carrying in the center of the gift table. "I decided that Jessica gets a medal, too," Janet explained, "I know she won't be cheering again anytime soon, lucky for me. But she is still a member of this squad." Janet forced an awkward smile and Elizabeth stifled a laugh.
"Janet takes everything so seriously," Elizabeth thought, trying hard not to stare at Janet's still-swollen nose. Jessica swore that it had been an accident, but Elizabeth secretly thought that Janet had deserved the embarrassment of being injured in front of the entire school. Luckily, more guests began to arrive and Elizabeth was spared from any further conversation with Janet.
Robin's mouth dropped open in awe as Mr. Wakefield pulled into the driveway of the split-level rambler that would be her home for the next several months. Cars lined the brightly-lit driveway, and much of the street beyond. Balloons, streamers, and lights covered everything in sights and music blared from the backyard over the sound of splashing in the pool. "Surprise!" Mr. Wakefield called, pulling Robin's large suitcase out of the trunk, "Welcome home!" Robin was blown away as she entered the house. Elizabeth ran up to her and hugged her hard while Steven helped Mr. Wakefield carry in the massive suitcase.
"You threw me a party?!" Robin shouted over the music. "Sweet Valley loves any excuse to celebrate," Elizabeth said with a smile, "Plus, Jess came home today." Elizabeth quickly led Robin into the den. Jessica and Mrs. Wakefield were seated on the sofa in the den, surrounded by friends. Jessica was in the middle of telling her side of the accident story to Winston Egbert, Ellen Riteman, Mandy Miller, Sarah Thomas, and Patrick Morris, but Jessica stopped midsentence when Robin entered the room. Jessica tried to stand up and run to Robin, but her mother quickly stopped her.
"Take it easy," Mrs. Wakefield reminded Jessica as Robin jumped onto the sofa beside her cousin. "Dr. John's orders," Elizabeth said with a smile, knowing all about Jessica's crush on the attractive young doctor. Jessica smiled back and hugged Robin as hard as she could. Jessica quickly introduced Robin to everyone and Winston could merely stare in awe. "Triplets!" Winston choked out after a long silence, pretending to die from happiness. Jessica and Robin laughed and ELizabeth soon joined in.
Robin looked over at her happy, smiling cousins and felt a twinge of sadness. Elizabeth and Jessica had everything- great parents, a nice home, and tons of friends. Robin held back tears as she was reminded of how she once had all of that, too...