This is just something random I decided to write, because I had inspiration. This, of course, wouldn't be possible without MY Shelley, because she basically created this character, and I just... borrow her when I get the inspiration, hehe. Thanks, baby!


Everyone had their weaknesses, though Shelley would never admit hers to another living soul. She had difficulty dealing with all of normal stresses of a teenage girl, without even mentioning all of the extra pressure put upon her by the show, and her narcissistically overbearing mother, who always demanded perfection. Her mother had yet to realize that she was merely attempting to squeeze juice out of an orange that had nothing left to give. She had danced and primped and carried herself so high for so long that surely it was only a matter of time before she faltered. Her feet had started down a slick path a few years ago when she'd begun dancing this inevitably dangerous dance for her mother, for the show, for everyone but herself, and soon, even she knew that she would slip. She had fallen from grace quite some time ago, but had managed to hide the bruises behind her perfectly coifed hair and silky dresses. She knew that when her downfall became increasingly more difficult to hide, she would have to face the repercussions, though that meant nothing at the moment. Shelley had learned quickly how to block things from her mind. She had mastered the art of indifference, or at least feigning it.

It was difficult to even pretend that the cruel words her mother directed at her had any sort of effect on her pride, or self esteem. Yes, she was her mother, and yes, some of the insults and demands hurt Shelley, but they were merely surface cuts. Her mother was too self-involved to bother twisting any knives into her daughter's wounds, and seemed to be pleased with a mere nick. As long as she believed that she had made some sort of impact, no matter how insignificant it was, she was happy. As long as she allowed herself to believe that her words were always floating at the top of Shelley's clouded mind, she was satisfied. Shelley had learned to ignore her long ago, and though that didn't stop the slight downward twitch of her lips when she heard her mother's nagging voice ringing in her ears, she never got much of a physical reaction from her. She had built up immunity to the elder woman's cruelty.

School was inevitably and openly boring for Shelley. She had never had difficulty in learning, and in fact did quite well on tests, but had decided long ago that she would prefer to gossip in class than complete her work, and it had begun to take a significant toll on her grades. She always awaited report card days nervously, though that was never obvious to anyone but herself. Her stomach would twist into horrid knots as those manila folders were passed out to each student. She would reach her slim fingers out and grab it from the teacher's hold in feigned boredom and frustration at having to spend her time waiting for such an utterly stupid task to be completed. While the students around her would slip their fingers into the papers and pull them out, eyeing each grade carefully and either sighing in relief or groaning in misery, she would fold hers neatly in half and slip it into her binder. She would pretend to forget about it, and would shrug nonchalantly, rolling her eyes at those who were stupid enough to ask about the marks she had received. And that was where it would remain, folded in the back of her binder, until much later that night, when her parents were asleep. She would move silently across her bedroom, pull the paper from the safety of her folder, and study each grade carefully, her pale eyes dark and narrowed as she chastised herself for each grade, no matter how high or low it may have been. She would do this until obscene hours in the morning, and try to remember exactly why she'd been given the grade that was marked. After several hours of debate, she would forge her mother's signature on the line that requested it, and slip it back into the folder. The next day, she dropped it, sighing in boredom, on the teacher's desk, and slipped into her seat, the apathetic look still set upon her lips. No one was ever the wiser that she'd spent at least seventy-five percent of the previous day worrying over a few small letters.

All of those things; her mother, school, even the show, were things she could pretend not to care about, easily. Yes, they still upset her, but she had spent the majority of her life building walls around herself; she added layers of those metaphorical bricks each time something in her life began to affect her. When her mother had started on the idea of Shelley's necessity to lose more weight, she added a layer. When school got stressful, or upon the rare occasion that she found difficult in learning a new dance for the show, two more layers were added. She had become quite the constructionist in her seventeen years, and this was a trait she was undeniably proud of, and pitied the idiots that hadn't figured out how to do so.

And although those walls were merely made of bricks, no one had ever disturbed them. Yes, people had attempted, but no one had ever succeeded. However, upon the arrival and constant intrusion of Amber Von Tussle, the walls began to chip, and then crumble, while Shelley tried desperately to save them from toppling over.

She didn't quite know what it was about that blonde girl that she found herself so inexplicably drawn to, or why, even when she managed to pull herself away from any sort of confrontation they became involved in, it stayed on her mind for days afterward. It made no sense why Shelley felt that slight tensing in her stomach each time Amber narrowed those icy blue eyes in her direction; it was insane to even try and figure out, why, when Amber moved toward her, Shelley let herself study the way her hips moved, if only for a moment. Amber, or more so the feelings she had toward Amber, was her enigma. She was the puzzle that Shelley could never quite solve, the question that she could never find a correct answer for. The fair-haired blonde girl was something that Shelley couldn't begin to understand. That did not mean, however, that she didn't think about it, or her. Oh, God, she did. She thought about her over breakfast, during class, at lunch. She tried so hard not to focus solely on her during the show, when she was there, dancing right in front of her. Close enough to reach out and touch; brush her fingers through that silky white-blonde hair and over the soft skin on her arms. Her mind went back to Amber when she attempted to complete her homework, when she was in the shower, even at night, in those expensive bed sheets, she thought of her. And yet, she hadn't been able to figure her out. More importantly, however, she hadn't been able to figure out how to disconnect herself from that girl. Amber was the one person, the one thing that she could not distance herself from. The one thing that she could not tell herself didn't matter, the one thing that Shelley could not convince herself to forget about.

Shelley had, in the chaos of her life, somehow managed to become her own Superman. She would not falter, never failed, never let anything or one catch her off guard. She had made quite a reputation for herself in that way.

But every Superman has their kryptonite, and Shelley had found hers in that blue-eyed girl with the face of an angel.