Easter Flowers - Part 1

Crisanta lowered her arms slowly, maintaining her smile as best she could while the sweat seemed to pour down her face.

“Very nice,” the coach told her, glancing up from her clipboard for what Crisanta was sure was just a little longer than she’d looked at all of the other girls. “We’ll let you know.”

Crisanta nodded politely, then jogged over to the bleachers, collapsing down next to Dorothy and Susie while the next hopeful quickly took her place. “Does she look more cheerful than me?” Crisanta asked quietly. “I think she looks more cheerful.”

“That doesn’t matter,” Dorothy assured her. “I saw her practicing yesterday; she’s not very good.”

“But the point of being a cheerleader is to be cheerful. Ow!” She glared at Susie, then turned bright red when she noticed the judge, and the girl who was about to begin her routine, were staring at her. “Sorry,” she squeaked, giving Susie a nasty look.

“You told me to pinch you if you started chewing on your lip,” Susie shrugged sheepishly.

“I didn’t mean for you to do it that hard,” Crisanta grumbled, just managing to stop herself before Susie could reach out for her arm again. She pulled the scrunchie out of her hair and stuffed it into the pocket of her shorts, which had the word Angel written across the bottom, shaking out her long, golden hair as she allowed herself to melt further back into the bleachers.

“If you’re this tired from a try-out, I don’t know how well you’re gonna do if you actually make the squad,” Dorothy whispered, pessimistic as usual.

“It’s just nerves,” Crisanta told her. “Plus, I practiced it, like, a million times. Give me a break.”

“This girl really -isn’t- very good,” Susie observed. “You were definitely better than her, anyway.”

“She does have two advantages over you, though,” Dorothy pointed out.

“But Crissy would be a lot easier for them to throw around,” Susie said somberly. “I guess it would come down to if…”

“If you’re going to talk about me like I’m not here, do it somewhere I’m not,” Crisanta growled.

“Shall we?” Dorothy teased, holding out her hand to Susie, until Crisanta knocked it aside.

“Wait until the try-outs are done, anyway,” she instructed, fighting back a yawn.

Crisanta closed her emerald green eyes, giving in to her exhaustion as well as she could in the uncomfortable seats.

The girl cringed as the hinges on her door creaked open, her bottom lip moving slowly towards her teeth as she peeked her head out into the hall, checking to see if there was light coming from under any of the other doors. There was, just a tad, from the night-light in her little sister, Camelia’s, room, but other than that, nothing.

She ducked back into her room, putting on her shoes and tying them tightly before grabbing the garbage bag. She checked the hallway one more time, to make sure nobody had woken at the sound of her door opening and sleepily flipped on their lights, then stepped out. She knew better than to try to tiptoe in those shoes, so she had to take her steps slowly, gingerly moving ever so slowly towards the front door.

She was about halfway there when she realized that she should have shut her bedroom door behind her - if anyone happened to glance into her room, it would be obvious she wasn’t there, and if they stuck their heads just a little further in, they’d be able to notice the lack of light coming from under the door of her private bathroom. Her sisters wouldn’t care enough to do anything, most likely, though they might ask her about it the next day, if they remembered. Her parents, on the other hand, might decide to investigate.

Maybe she could just say that she’d forgotten to put her garbage out in the can earlier that evening - why she had decided to do so in the middle of the night instead of waiting until that morning and hoping she beat the garbage-man might be more difficult to explain.

But what were the chances they would happen to wake up and come out into the hall, anyway? ‘They get bigger the longer you stand here debating,’ she reminded herself. And besides, if they did wake up, they’d probably hear somebody wandering through the house, so perhaps seeing that her door was open would assure them that it was just her, searching for a midnight snack or something.

She had to slow down even more once she was through the hall. It was always hard to tell just what configuration the chairs in the dining room would be in, and then once she was in the living room, she had to try to avoid any of Camelia’s toys that might have been left there when she had been sent to bed. And, of course, there were the couches and the various end and coffee tables to avoid - she was pretty sure she knew where they were, but every time she let herself get too confident, she’d end up running straight into them.

The sound of the lock on the front door clicking open seemed to echo throughout the house, far louder than she could ever remember it sounding before. ‘I should have brought my key,’ she fretted. If -that- had woken somebody up, they might come to investigate, and if they saw the door unlocked, they would be sure to change that, thus trapping her outside. But it was far too late to worry about that now, so instead she slowly pulled the front door open just enough to squeeze out of it.

Their driveway was fairly long, but it never seemed that bad, not with the hard part of her journey out of the way. She still went a bit slow, in case her dad was lying awake, listening for sounds that could be a burglar approaching, but the moon was shining, and it felt as if the whole, seemingly empty, world was hers. It all looked so big after the claustrophobia of the hallway, and the minefield of the living room path to the front door.

Her parents had done her a great service, way back when they’d bought their garbage can, by getting one that was far too big for them to ever - except sometimes at Christmas - get close to filling up. Her garbage bag always had plenty of room, and once it was in there, in blended in perfectly with all of the others, so you would never guess it had been a last minute addition.

She let herself move more quickly on the way back inside, slipping her shoes off once she had locked the front door behind her. Sometimes she thought about just leaving her shoes out by the front door all the time, like everyone else in her family seemed to, thus being able to sneak through the house in just her socks, but she was always afraid she’d have trouble getting them on in the dark. It was probably stupid of her, but she’d gotten used to it by now.

The hallway was still just as dark as it had been on the way out, so she allowed herself a sigh of relief even before she’d gotten back inside her room and flopped down on her bed, gold hair flying every which way. She smiled to herself - she’d pulled it off again - and then allowed her bladder at last to relax, filling the padding around her bottom with warmth - and now she had started on the cargo for the next trip. It was probably even more stupid of her to wear a diaper under her pajamas while she was sneaking around the house, but after her mom had seen her in the exact same outfit when she actually -was- going for a midnight snack and not seemed to notice, she’d figured it wasn’t -that- big of a risk. Her nightshirt went well past her bottom, anyway, and her pajama pants were loose enough that the diaper wouldn’t be -too- obvious, even if the top of them could be seen.

She knew she should probably change before going to sleep, but her bathroom seemed so far away, and she suddenly barely had the energy to squirm over to a position where she could reach the light switch without actually having to leave the bed before she fell asleep.

Kalina opened her eyes, her teeth clamped firmly against her bottom lip. “Can I try to tumble out of its attack radius?”

Alice raised an eyebrow. “You have ranks in Tumble?”

Kalina smiled worriedly. “I think I have one…”

“Well, you can try,” Alice shrugged.

“You do realize there’s a minus five or something for your armor, don’t you?” Sam The Boy pointed out.

Kalina glowered at him, a strand of her blonde hair choosing that moment to fall free from her ponytail and hang loosely at the side of her face. “Are you trying to get us all killed?”

“Isn’t he always?” Sam The Girl asked, also turning her attention to her male counterpart. “That -is- what he’s best at.”

“One time,” he rolled his eyes. “And it’s not like I made you guys…”

“I’d like to get some homework done tonight,” Alice interrupted, “so would you all stop distracting Kalina so she can get to failing this skill check?”

“Bite me,” Kalina glared at Alice.

“I’m sure the dragon would love to do that.”

Kalina picked up her die gently, blowing on it before giving it a good shake and then tossing it onto the table. It bounced a few times before finally coming to a rest, and, by a severe stroke of luck, on its highest number. She couldn’t quite keep herself from shouting a triumphant, “Ha!” at a now sullen Alice.

“Fine,” Alice sulked. “You summersault out of the dragon’s reach. But now it’s his turn.” She perked up at that, glancing at the battle map with an evil smirk.

“Don’t forget to roll the damage from my poison!” Sam The Boy reminded her.

“Oh, yeah…” Alice’s expression turned dour once again at the result. “…And the dragon suddenly gives out one, final roar, then falls over dead.”

“Who’s useless now?!” Sam The Boy asked, though nobody bothered to answer.

“Well, that was… anticlimactic,” Alice sighed. “But that’s probably a good place to stop for today.”

“But… But… Treasure!” Kalina sputtered.

“What makes you think he had treasure?” Alice asked mysteriously.

“Because you told us he was guarding a pile of it?”

“I guess you’ll just have to wait until next time to find out what it was,” Alice said.

“She hasn’t figured out what it is yet,” Sam The Girl sagely told the others.

“I totally have,” Alice protested. “I just have homework, and… And get out of my house!”

Sam The Boy lived in the opposite direction of everyone else, so he bid everyone farewell right away and rode his bicycle off into the sunset, but Sam The Girl rode a little ways with Kalina.

“Do you remember what we’re supposed to do for Chemistry tomorrow?” Kalina asked her.

“I think it’s pages 80 through 85,” Sam answered. “Or through 90, actually.”

“Eh, it’s probably not that important,” Kalina shrugged, thinking of all the other stuff she needed to get finished. She might have had time for five pages, but not ten.

“It’s really not that hard,” Sam told her, though Kalina was pretty sure she was lying, as usual. “Just get your sister to explain it to you.”

“She had cheerleading try-outs today,” Kalina sighed. “If I ask her about Chemistry, I’m gonna have to sit through at least an hour of her talking about that first.”

“She’s so lucky to have such a caring sister.”

“Darn skippy,” Kalina nodded, turning her bike into her driveway and waved goodbye as Sam continued on. “See you tomorrow!”

As she walked into her house, she found herself almost immediately ambushed by a tiny form, all wild, light brown, hair and green eyes and grass stained jeans. “Hi, Cammy,” Kalina smiled down at her, prying herself free. “How was your day?”

“Good!” her little sister answered with a huge grin, before toddling back into the living room. From the way she was walking, Kalina was pretty sure she could use a diaper change, but she had just gotten in - let someone else deal with it.

She had barely gotten two steps inside when she found herself face to face with her reflection, staring back at her in a rather annoyed way. “It was your turn to set the table,” it informed her.

“It’s not dinnertime yet,” Kalina shot back. “I’m getting to it.”

“Well, it’s already done now,” Crisanta sighed before wandering off into the kitchen. “Why don’t you see if Camelia needs changed?”

Kalina considered asking her sister something that probably would have gotten her in a lot of trouble, but instead she took the high road, and pretended she hadn’t heard her. She loved Crisanta, of course, but at some point she had turned into a miniature version of their mom. That sort of thing was bound to happen eventually; it was kinda sad to see it happening so soon. On the other hand, Crisanta probably found it sad that it was taking so long to happen to Kalina. When had they become so different?

Kalina shook her head wistfully, starting to head towards her room, only to trip over a large, stuffed bunny, likely having been dragged out because of the season, only to be forgotten in the middle of the floor. If she’d have set her backpack down, she probably would have been able to keep her balance. She hadn’t.

“You okay?” Camelia asked, eyes wide with worry as she waddled towards her big sister.

“I’m fine,” Kalina sighed, getting back up and then reaching down for her sister’s hand. “Come on, let’s go get you a dry diaper.”

1 Like

Easter Flowers - Part 1

Well, you might not have ever known any mostly girl P&P groups, but I have. I’m not going to pretend that it’s common, but they do exist.

Woken is a past form of woke… Past participle, maybe. Awakened just didn’t sound right there.

Yes, they are twins. I almost wrote “Kalina considered asking her twin” instead of “Kalina considered asking her sister”, but it felt too much like, as you put it, clubbing the reader between the eyes with it. I’m not really sure what else that could have meant (well, I guess one of them could have actually been the reflection of the other, brought to life…) so I assumed people would be able to get by. If anyone didn’t get that they were twins, please read the aforementioned line as “Kalina considered asking her twin”. If you did, please read it as it is.

Easter Flowers - Part 1

I agree, it would have been better if you just came out and said they were twins. Yes, I figured it out, but it took away from the flow of the story as I had to stop and figure out what had just happened.

It was an interesting start to a story, but I don’t know what the story is about.

Easter Flowers - Part 1

Nice story, but it is hard to keep all of those names straight.

Easter Flowers - Part 1

I like this story so far! As usual from you, it’s very well written and you actually have to think a little while reading it, which is good and bad. I’m sure we’ll learn more about the three sisters later into the story, but I’m loving it so far. I sort of want some clarification on the ages, though, because the way Carmela is talking she seems too old to be in diapers, like 5-7, not 2-3. Also, I’m wondering which of the older girls it was walking downstairs with the diapers in her garbage bag. I’m guessing the cheerleader.

Excellent start!

Easter Flowers - Part 1

very nice story, but as people said all the names are hard to keep track of. yet I know many novelist that use many names in a single story. (any one heard of the Westing Game!!) (one of my favorites!!) this story is very nice and think it will be one of the better ones in a while.

Easter Flowers - Part 1

i likje this story alot its nice im confused but still enjoyed it

Easter Flowers - Part 1

I actually thought that Crisanta was older.

Well done with the ambiguity of which sister is ‘The Girl’ though.