Danielle Collens is the long time neighbor of the famous Connect 3. One regular morning, her Mom tells her she's engaged to either Jason, Shane, or Nate, and that she has two months to decide. Things get more complicated when Jason, Shane, and Aiden urge Danielle to pick Nate. How is this complicated? The two ALWAYS seem to end up in some kinda awkward accident, like an anime. Can she take control of this porblem before it gets out of hand?
"There was once in the land of Feudal Era Japan, a priestess named Denami. During her teen years, she had fallen in love with her best friend, her village's prince, Noriko. Of course, the two were of different class. Noriko was of a high class, a prince. Denami was of lower class, a priestess. Although, this did not stop the two hearts from coming together. One day, Prince Noriko was set for an arranged marriage to a princess. Although gifted with beauty, the princess's heart was of greed. Jealous of the Noriko's and Denami's soon-to-blossom love, the princess poisoned the priestess. At her deathbed, she told Prince Noriko, that she was in love with him, and that one day in the future, they will be reunited in reincarnated lives. After the priestess's death, Prince Noriko's heart was shrouded in darkness and sorrow. He cursed arranged marriages, for it was the cause of his first and only love's death. Out of rage, the prince cursed the priestess's family to live under arranged marriages for the eldest daughters, for he trusted in Denami's words. One day, they would be reunited, reunited in an arranged marriage, the one thing that tore them away from eternal happiness..."
"The Prince then passed away from sadness," I finished, closing my book.
8 year old Aiden yawned. "Thanks for reading the story to me again, Dani." I smiled and tucked him in.
"No problem, buddy. I love reading this story. And it makes me happy to have an audience."
He smiled. "Is that a true story?"
I shrugged. "Dunno. It's a story passed down in my family, but I don't think it is. It's just a legend. Why do you ask?"
He yawned again. "I want to know if the prince and the priestess get back together."
I smiled and ruffled his hair. "I don't know, Aiden. It's just a story. Now, get some sleep. Knowing your brothers, you're in for a big day tomorrow."
Aiden laughed and I turned off the lights, closing the door.
"He finally went to sleep?" Nate asked, waiting outside the room in his pajamas, or in other words, his shirt and boxers.
I nodded, still holding my oh-so famous family story book. "Yup. This is why you shouldn't show Aiden those scary movies."
"Like I was supposed to know it was that scary."
I rolled my eyes. "Come on. It's almost midnight. We should get some sleep too. It's finally summer and I actually have reasons to want to wake up early."
He nodded and went to his room. I walked downstairs, seeing my pillow and blanket on the couch. I slept over at the Gray household quite often.
My name is Danielle Collens, a 15-year old teenager. I am like some normal girl next door for the Grays, for my entire life. Yeah they're famous and have left to go on tour sometimes, but they're here now, for the whole summer. My mom doesn't mind me staying over here, since I've known Nate since I was like 3. That's how we're such good friends. Anyway, I'm kinda Japanese on my mom's side. Since then I've always been into watching anime, drawing anime, leaning Japanese, you know, getting into my heritage. But either way, I'm still a normal teenager with normal teenager problems.
"WAKE UP WAKE UP WAKE UP!" Shane shouted.
"AHH!" I shouted, falling off the couch.
Shane laughed nervously. "Hehe, sorry Dani. You ok?"
I rubbed my head and sat up, looking at him with one eye. "You try waking up like I do, then we'll talk."
"Well come on, eating breakfast now."
I nodded and stood up, my short black layered hair in a mess, but it was always like that. You know how some guys just plainly look good no matter how messed up their hair is? That's like me.
"Morning," I greeted, walking into the kitchen.
"Hey Dani," Jason greeted, "Would you mind waking Nate up? He's still asleep."
I nodded and walked up the stairs. I knocked on Nate's door and it slid open a little. I arched my eyebrow sleepily and walked in. I yawned and stretched my arms. Then I noticed Nate's bed empty and still un-made. I blinked lazily until I felt a hand cover my mouth.
"Gotcha," he said in victory.
I narrowed my eyes and flipped him. Yeah, weird for a girl to flip a guy like that. Hegroaned, his back on the floor. I keeled down, my head inches away from his face. "Nice try, Nate."
He laughed. "And I thought I'd finally get you this time."
I smirked. With me watching all kinds of anime, they taught me how to cope with losses, how to react to situations, when to defend myself. Then came when I started watching fighting shows. I always tried to act out all the fighting scenes and get stronger. Well, now that I'm older and wiser, I can actually do them. "Alright hot shot. Let's get downstairs. Everyone's waiting."
I held out my hand and helped him up. We walked down the stairs and saw Shane, Jason, Aiden, and our moms in the living room, rather than the kitchen.
"Uh," I started.
"I thought you said there was breakfast," Nate whispered.
I gave him a glare but that was stopped by my Mom. "Danielle, can you come down here?"
"Nate you too," Diane added, she being the guys' mom. Nate and I didn't hessitate to join the others who were sitting down, as if awaiting some kind of punishment.
"Are we in toruble?" Aiden asked.
Diane laughed. "No Aiden. No one's in trouble. We just..."
"We just need to talk," my mom finished.
"About what?" I spoke up, my head on Nate's shoulder. I was starting to feel sleepy again. But I mean, who wouldn't? It's early, I'm still in pj's, I'm on a suddenly cramped yet comfy couch, and my best friend is squished beside me, a perfect pillow.
"You," my mom said, gicing me a look.
"What'd you do?!" Jason asked, as if I just killed someone.
I threw a pillow on the floor at him. "I didn't do anything."
My mom laughed at my morning behavior. "It's just that, well, you know how your father left us back when you were little?"
I blinked, not really phased by the subject as my mom thought I would. "Yeah? What about him?"
"Well, it's not about him really. It's about the marriage."
"You're getting back together?" I guessed out of the blue.
"No," Mom said.
"Then you're asking me about marrying another guy."
"Dani that's not it either-"
"So you're not marrying."
"I'm not marrying!"
"So why are we talking about marriage?"
My mom groaned at how I was acting and fell into her chair.
Diane sighed. "She's talking about your marriage, dear."
At the end of the sentence I sat straight up, along with the others.
"Whoa, back up here," Shane said as if this was some joke that had to be replayed. "Dani's getting married?"
"Well she's supposed to," my mom resumed. "In my side of the family, the oldest daughter is always supposed to be set an arranged marriage."
"Whoa, just like in your story book!" Aiden said to me, as if this were a good thing.
"Hey, this isn't the medieval times, Mom. I'm not getting an arranged marriage to a total stranger."
"We know," my mom said. "Which is why I talked to Diane."
I looked to the Gray Mother. "About what exactly?"
Diane grinned nervously. "I know that a teenager like you wouldn't want to be set an arranged marriage. They'd only end up in misfortune, like your mother's."
My head snapped back towards my Mom. "You had an arranged marriage?"
"With your father. And that's pretty much why he left. And now you have to have an arranged marriage so we don't break our ancestor's tradition."
"To who?!" I asked, panicking in the inside.
"Again back to the subject that I talked to Diane about," Mom said, trying to avoid answering.
" To who?" I repeated.
Diane looked nervously at my mom. "Um, actually it's not really my choice to pick who you're supposed to marry-"
"To who?!" all of us said for a third time.
"One of my sons," Diane finally sighed out.
All of the guys bulged their eyes out while my jaw dropped, only to be closed by Nate. "Say what?"
"Hey, you're having it waaay easier than me," my mom said. "You get to be married to one of your long time childhood friends."
"And this is a good thing for her?" Shane asked, only to be elbowed by Jason.
"At least you get to pick," my mom said again, starting to get tired from all this.
"Y-You can't be serious," Nate said. "Mom?"
Diane shrugged. "I have already signed an agreement with Dani's grandparents."
I looked back at my mom. "I got grandparents now?"
She laughed. "Grandparent. One's dead."
I blinked. "... Yeah thanks for dropping the news on me so easily."
"Well?" my mom asked. "Who's it gonna be?"
I turned around and looked along the one couch we were all on. All the guys looked away, trying to pretend as if this conversation did not just happen. How I wished it so. "Um, how long exactly do I have to choose?"
"Till you turn 16," my mom answered. "Then I'll have to finish up the last thing on your grandma's scroll and you're engaged."
"Don't you turn 16 in two months?" Jason asked me.
I groaned and sank in my seat. "This can not be happening."
Diane put on an assuring smile. "I'm sure everything will be fine. Boys I'll go down to the studio and tell your father Mrs. Collens and I told Dani the news."
"Bye Mom," Aidene said as Diane left the room.
"I'm gonna go to work," Mom said, taking her coat and following Denise out the door.
"Yeah! Thanks for leaving me at my life-time crisis!" I called out sarcastically.
"Aw, cheer up," Nate said, seeing how upset I was. "How about we all go change, then play some video games, get your mind off things."
I sighed. "Alright. But only because I'm starting to feel weird since we're all still squished in this stupid couch."
All of us sat there. We were too squished to move.
"... Awkward," Shane said after a moment of silence.
"Wow we're really stuck," Aiden commented.
Jason made a face. "No, we're stuck. You're sitting on my lap."
Aiden looked forward. "Oh yeah." He jumped off as we all tried to get out of the couch.
"Aiden! Little help here?" I asked, trying to sit up.
Aiden thought a moment. "Uh, no."
"Aidne!" all of us yelled as he ran up the stairs laughing. Gosh, these were gonna be some two months.