Author's note: Finally I can update the story. Sorry if it took sooooo long. But like I have promise someone, I am not, repeat not orphaning this story. This story will see its completion, that I promise. I also ask forgiveness from certain someones whom I have promised to about my uploading this chapter: Yes I'm late I'm sorry.

Now, for the all-important disclaimer: I don't own nothing. You dig?

Chapter 5

It was a nice day at Montressor. Nice if you are a solar-surfer. The sun was shining brightly, yet the winds were also blowing profusely, allowing skilled surfers to do amazing tricks. And yes, that was what's going on around the planet. Surfers doing their amazing stuffs to impress their friends, or more importantly, their 'targets of affection'. All in all, a great day for solar-surfers. Except for one very disappointed solar-surfer, who at that moment could only watch his fellow surfers from a window on the second storey of a sprawling manor.

# Stupid board # Alistair Doppler mused to himself. # Why must the engine died when I'm doing The Plunge? # He reminisced, unhappily, of the accident that left his left arm in a stabilizing cast. He shook his head. Ah well, regretting the past won't change a thing. He was just turning around when his sister bounded into the room, kinda short-breathed. "Hiya, Mary. What's up?"

Mary Doppler was an attractive female felid. Well, of course all the Doppler girls are attractive, but some say that she's has more . . . er, sensual attraction than her sisters. In Mary's case, this is most likely due to her flaming red hair, and her . . . outfit selection. While her sisters will go around town in dresses or long skirts, she would go out wearing a tank top and miniskirt. When in highschool, she would go out with little chains and leather bracelets, and a leather jacket to boot. But her mother frowns upon her "ruffian" outfit, so now she left the chains and bracelets. But the leather jacket stays.

"I need you help, Ali. Seeing you're the only man around . . ."

Alistair laughed, "What, Mary? Though I'm a man I'm kinda invalid right now . . ."

"Nothing much. I just want to open Mom's clothing case in the Attic."

"What?" Alistair exclaimed, "If Mom knows, she'll have our head, Mary!"

"Well, she's not at home now, and she doesn't have to know. Now will you help me or not?"

Conflict rages in his mind, between what he knew shouldn't be done and what the heck . . . and what the heck won. "Ok. What about Coco and Julia?" Alistair inquired, referring to her other two sisters. Well, actually he's not too worried about the brunette Coco, as being a geek . . . er, I mean a book-lover and studious girl (yes, that's the word), she tends to keep quiet. But blonde Janice . . .

"They're out shopping. So we have about 30 – 60 minutes. Will you move your arse?" asked Mary impatiently.

"Okay, okay. Don't blow your top of. Jeez," replied Alistair.

Quickly they bounded up the staircase toward the attic. Hurriedly, they unlock the door and opened it. Brushing aside some inconvenient spiderwebs, Mary walked without any doubt toward a large chest nestled against the wall. "Help me pull this one Ali," implored her.

Together, with Mary's hands holding this side of the casket, and Ali's good hand holding that side, they heave. "One, two, three!" The casket slid forward, enabling the lid to be opened.

Quickly Mary whipped out a key from her jacket's pocket.

Dumbstruck, Ali muttered, "Isn't that . . . supposed to be . . ."

"Yes yes yes I 'borrowed' this from Mom's dresser drawer. Now shuddup will ya?" snapped Mary.

Quickly Alistair shut his mouth, and silently watch while Mary rummaged through the clothes in the casket, until with a shout of triumph she produced a set of white uniform. "Aha found it! Let's put things back in order. Come on, give me a hand, Ali." She swiftly closed the casket, locked it, and together with Alistair, pushed the casket back to where it was.

Only vaguely aware of what Mary had found, Alistair followed Mary to the girls' bedroom. "Stop! Wait. Here. Good boy," ordered Mary as they reached the girl's room.

Knowing what Mary about to do, Alistair blurted, "Are you sure about this Mary? Mom will be very mad if you put on her clothes. Not to mention if it doesn't fit, it might . . ." quickly Alistair shut his mouth, regretting what he had just said.

Hearing the words "doesn't fit", Mary stopped in mid-stride. Ears flattened and her pupils narrowing to slits, she hissed menacingly, "Are you implying, my dear Ali, that somehow I no longer have the figure to wear these clothes?" She took two steps toward him, and placed her face only centimeters away from Alistair's face.

Gulping hard, he meekly replied, "No, of course not, Mary. So, pleasedogoonandtrytheclothesIamsuretheywillfityou."

Pleased that her attempt at intimidating his little brother (well, actually, the Doppler kids are quadruplets, so they have the same age. But Mary managed to come out the second while Alistair is the last) succeeded, Mary do a 180-degree turn, and stepped inside her room, closing and locking the door behind her.

After about 7 minutes, which seemed an eternity to Alistair, who can only pace back and forth in front of Mary's room, suddenly the door burst open.

"How do I look?" queried Mary.

"You . . . look . . . awesome . . ." replied Alistair, with mouth agape. For in front of him is no longer the Mary with the skirt and leather jacket, but a totally different Mary wearing a freshman uniform of the Imperial Navy Academy. Although the uniform is a bit worn here and there, it fits her, and Alistair can't help recalling images of his Mom during her Academy years. Alistair blurted, "You want to be a spacer, Mary?"

"Yes, I am, you nitwit! So, you think I'm okay in this outfit?"

Rolling his eyes, Alistair replied, "Mary, entering the Academy is not only wearing nice uniforms."

"Of course I know that you silly!" she ran into her room again, "I just want to imagine myself being a cadet that's all . . ."

Suddenly, the manor's front door burst open, and wafting through the air they heard the voices of two girls: It's their sisters returning from their shopping jaunt. Wide-eyed with surprise, Mary said, "Oh no! Coco and Janice! Quick, I must release this uniform before they . . ."

Too late.

Instead of merely walking up the stairs as she customarily did, Janice ran up the stairs, apparently eager to tell something to Mary when she abruptly stopped and said . . .

"Eek! Mary! You . . . wore Mom's uniform!"

Hearing her sister's shriek, Coco ran also up the stairs, and stopped in apparent surprise, dropping her books and some other things he carried, her hands covering her mouth while she looked at Mary wide-eyed.

"Look, Janice, Coco, I can explain . . ."

Regaining her composure, Janice cut Mary's sentence, "Mary, you know how Mom valued her privacy and treasured her past. How in the Etherium can you dare to rummage through her stuff?"

"Janice, I want to be a spacer."

"What?" interjected Coco, "but you're already in the second grade of the University! I think - -"

"I don't care what you guys think, but I'm going to be spacer, and that's it!"

Huffing resignedly, Alistair watched as Mary prepares for a battle of words with her similarly strong-willed sisters. Trying desperately to avert certain disaster, he interrupted, "Hey, hey, hey, everyone. Please. Relax. Why don't we sit and listen to Mary for awhile? I'm sure she has good reasons," turning his head to Mary, he said, hopefully, "right, Mary?"

Mary didn't answer immediately. She just pouted and folded her hands on her chest. It's Janice that's the first to respond. "Okay. Ali's got a point. So let's all come into the room, sit, and let's have a talk." Without waiting for others' response, Janice walked into the bedroom, with the others following obediently (with the possible exception of pouting Mary) into the room.

"Okay now, pray tell us, Mary, what possessed you that you wore Mom's uniform?"

"I want to be a spacer," Mary replied. A pause. "Yes, I want to be a spacer. I've made up my mind."

"And forfeit the first year at the University," blurted Coco. "You'll have to repeat the first year all over again, Mary."

"Yes, I realized that, Coco. But really want to be a spacer."

Janice snickered. "I . . . just can't imagine you as a cadet, Mary. You're hot-headed, you can't stand authority . . . I bet you won't survive your first semester in the Academy."

Mary's eye narrowed dangerously, and she said coldly, "We'll see, Janice, we'll just see."

Sensing the impending danger, Alistair cut in, "Okay. Now. We know that Mary want to be transferred. To the Academy. That, I'm sure Mom will have no problem. But only IF Mom and Dad agree. Now, how do you plan on telling them, Mary?"

"Well, I think I'll just be blunt and honest with them."

"What if they don't agree?" Janice asked.

Mary lifted her eyebrows. Suddenly she became worried. # Yes, what if they don't agree? Especially me, the family trouble-maker. # She bowed her head. "I . . . haven't thought of that."

"Well, as usual. You don't often thought of anything," teased Janice. Then suddenly she went soft, "But okay, don't worry we'll vouch for you, right guys?" She looked at Coco and Alistair, who nodded hesitantly.

"Okay, we'll all vouch for you. Now let's think of how we'll break this news to Mom and Dad . . ."

Author's note: "Where's Jim?" I heard you scream. Well sorry due to my lateness I decided to drop Jim out of this chapter, just so I can fulfill my promise of an update. The next chapter will see Jim in action again. Cross my heart. Scout's honor. Etc.