Thank you for your continued interest in my story! ^^
Still need help with the author's notes...
Also, I don't have ANY reviewers at all, so I figure it would be a waste of time to demand some before updating chapters.
IGPX does not belong to me.
Team Basilisk and Team Subliminal, however, do.
The flashing lights and the screaming crowd could be seen and heard for several blocks before the limousine pulled gently to a stop in front of the building. It took a few seconds for the driver to open the door for them, but when he did, the noise went from a muffled moan to a roar immediately. Cadee and Chris winced but Shea just leaned forward.
"Pretty big step up from the IG-2, huh?" She asked, "Well, shall we?" Cadee took a deep breath as she nodded and then slowly stepped from the car. There was increase in the screaming and flashes of cameras as she disappeared.
"Well," Chris said after several seconds ensued, "Aren't you going?"
"After you." Shea said.
"No, it's ladies first."
"Ah, but you see, I am six inches taller than you. It will look nicer if we go in height order."
"What?" Chris asked, looking incredulous. Shea's face went from a wide grin to an expression of innocent wonder.
"You know, Chrissy, we still haven't found out if it hurts more when I kick you with my stilettos than it does when I just use my shoes." She pulled her dress up just high enough that Chris could get a good look at her tall silver sandals.
Chris glared at her, but seemed to think better of arguing. He slid out of the limo (to another increase in pitch from the crowd) and Shea followed, smirking.
After a few minutes of waving at the paparazzi, the team ducked into the welcoming darkness of the building. Just as the door closed behind them, another limo pulled up and the screaming reached its wildest point yet. It was miraculously silent inside however. The three of them barely had time to look at one another before a woman with wavy orange hair jogged up to them clutching a clipboard.
"You must be Team Basilisk, right?" She asked, but didn't wait for them to answer before she jumped into her explanation, "We'll be starting with you since you are the newest team in the IG-1. Follow me to your places, please."
The woman turned around and starting moving quickly through the darkened hallway. A murmuring crowd could be heard in the room next door. The woman remained silent until she had guided them to a place on the stage. She pointed out a large cut out of the Basilisk symbol and whispered:
"Stand here. Don't pull the curtain over so you can see the audience. Don't talk, even to each other." She tapped her pen against the clipboard and walked away, turning back to give them a look that was clearly a warning.
"Geeze, she acts like we're six year olds." Shea sighed as she leaned against the giant encircled S.
"Don't lean on that! If it falls over, everyone will notice, idiot." Chris snapped without even looking at his teammate.
"Oh? Is this bothering you?" Shea asked with a laugh. She bounced her back off and on against the cutout.
"Hell yes! And what happened to not embarrassing us?"
"Guys, stop!" Cadee hissed. Shea and Chris blinked at the smaller member of their team and then followed her gaze down the length of the stage. Most of the teams were already there and every single eye was turned to look at the newest team in the league.
"Um…H-Hey there." Said Shea, waving. None of them answered, either because of the orange headed woman's edict or the desire to not to speak to anyone below rank.
"I thought I said not to talk!" The woman was back and had delivered quite the blow to the back of Shea's head with her clipboard. Shea swore and rubbed the back of her head, "Be quiet or I will have you removed from the premises." Then she walked past, leading another group of people: A tall boy with his long dark hair pulled into a ponytail, a girl with blonde hair that reached her shoulder, and a smaller boy with white hair. They eyed Shea speculatively as they passed. The dark haired one looked her up and down and chuckled.
"What's their problem?" Shea asked after the woman had reached the end of the stage opposite their own, "Got sticks up their as- Cadee, what's up?"Shea had looked towards the captain to see Cadee staring after the other three, her face an expression of awe.
"Do you know who they are, Shea?" Cadee asked, still staring, "They have every right to look at us that way."
"What are you talking about?"
"That's Team Subliminal! They're last year's champs!"
"Alright, everyone!" The woman called them to attention, "I'm going to pull back the curtains. Please do not talk. After the session is over, you are allowed to get off the stage and eat."
"Ah! Here we go!" Cadee said, her voice slightly higher than usual. Shea laughed and stood up. Chris didn't say anything and his expression didn't change as the curtain pulled up and the photographers in the audience began to fire at will.
"Good evening everyone! I'm Benjamin Bright and welcome to the opening ceremony of this year's IG-1 season!" The crowd roared as a man with a purple moustache bounded on to the stage, holding a microphone, "This year is going to be a great one, folks, and it's all thanks to these pilots up on this stage, so let's all give them a round of applause as I introduce them!"
He ran to the far end of the stage where Shea, Chris, and Cadee were standing. None of them knew what to do, since the woman in charge hadn't explained that particular bit. Shea and Cadee caught each other's eyes and smiled nervously.
"Starting off we have Team Basilisk!" Benjamin Bright shouted, waving his arm towards the three, "The forward is Christopher Calvin!" Chris looked out into the audience and didn't do anything until Shea elbowed him in the ribs. Luckily, he didn't double over and instead lifted his hand in acknowledgement, "The captain of the team and the girl who plays the mid-field position is none other than the lovely Cadee Michaels!" Cadee bowed and smiled, "And last but not least, the defensive player is Shea Willows!" She grinned and waved her hand at the audience.
"These are our rookies for the year. While previous competitors have counted the new teams out, the past two rookie teams have managed to take control! Will these newbies take the stage right out like Satomi and Subliminal? We'll have to watch to find out!"
Bright moved on to the next team, the group to Basilisk's left, "And here's the team best known for their brutal techniques on and off the track: Team SledgeMama!" A group of thin men with silver hair and a boy about Cadee's age with silvery blonde hair covering one of his eyes waved at the group. The men smiled, but the boy continued frowning, "The forwards here are River Marque and Yamma! The defense player is Dimma, and finally the Mid-Fielder is Timma! Last year they got fourth place and their fans are hoping for a much better year!
"The third team is Edgeraid! This team came in fifth place last year and just barely managed to stay in the IG-1! Will forward Bjorn Johannsen, mid-fielder Bella Demarco, and defender Frank Bulit be able to stay in this year?"
"Last year's third place team is comprised of Alex Cunningham, Jan Michel, and Dew…we're talking about Team Velshtein! They haven't been the champs since Team Satomi came on the scene and they haven't fought the same since last seasons' race against Subliminal! Can they get out of their rut and back in the race?" The cameras flashed over a group that was headed by a tall brown haired man who looked extremely uncomfortable. His two teammates, a girl and another boy, were staring at their feet.
"Next up we have Takashi Jin! Liz Ricarro! Amy Stapleton! I'm talking about Team Satomi!" Cadee stood on her top toes in order to see better to no avail. A boy with black hair standing with a short haired Puerto Rican woman and a younger blonde girl grinned out at the sea of cameras, "Last year they were finally knocked from the top by the rookie Team Subliminal! But their fans are confident they will make a comeback this year!"
"And finally!" Shea and Cadee leaned forward. Chris stuck his finger in his ear, "Last year's rookies and champs, Team Subliminal!" The group smiled coolly out and the screaming masses, "Led by defender Joseph Bell and complimented by forward Katrina Rose and mid-fielder Elijah Manning, folks, this is Team Subliminal!" The room filled with noise and flashes of light. Team Subliminal was obviously very popular. The taller boy waved, but his expression did not change. The girl covered her mouth with one hand as she laughed.
`The photographers took their last pictures and then the opening was over. Most of the press was herded outside before the teams left their places on the stage. Some remained, however, and began to make their way to different people for interviews.
"Wow, this is really upscale." Shea said as she placed a couple chocolate covered strawberries on a plate, "Aren't you going to eat anything?"
"I'm too nervous." Cadee squeaked, "What if they talk to us?"
"Any of them!"
"Breath, Cadee." Shea laughed, "They have no interest in us anyway."
"They will soon. We're going to show them at our very first race."
"You said it. Right, Chrissy?" Shea looked over to the place where Chris had been after they had made their way to the floor, "Chrissy? Aw, man! Where did that idiot go?"
"I'll go get him. He probably snuck off to play a videogame or something." Cadee turned and disappeared into the throng.
"Kick him in the balls for me when you find him!" Shea called after her.
"So that's this year's new team." Said Joseph as he watched the smaller girl leave, "They might live up to that rumor we heard about that them. Quite the lively bunch. Even that boy has some potential." The girl beside him giggled madly.
"Not for long! Just look at those Velshtein losers- still just as pitiful as after our first race. We'll break Basilisk just as badly."
"No Katrina." Joseph snapped, "We only did that because Velshstein was a threat."
"But if Basilisk really is what they're said to be, they might become a threat." Elijah said quietly, though he was staring into the crowd in the opposite direction of the rest of his team.
"Chris! Chris!" Cadee had been searching for her forward for about ten minutes and he was nowhere to be found. Her already heightened nerves were shot. She was about to start screaming his name, but she turned a corner and found him sitting on the floor, back against the wall, with his game in his hand.
"Seriously, Takeshi, you're still doing this?" Someone behind Cadee demanded.
"Excuse me, miss? Are you with Team Basilisk?" Shea was still standing by the snack table, waiting for Cadee to get back with Chris. She blinked and grinned at the reporter that had walked up to her.
"Yes, I am."
"I'm Mary Weathers with the official IG-1 network. May I have a few words?"
"Do you know where the rest of your team is? We could interview them, too."
"Well, our forward went MIA and our mid-fielder went to find him. They could be awhile."
"Never mind, then. We'll just speak to you."
"Man, Takeshi, four years and you're still sneaking away to play Clock World." Liz Ricarro of Team Satomi sighed.
"Sorry, Liz. It's just wild in there and I needed a break." Takeshi stood up and rubbed the back of his head.
"Were you playing nice with the other kids? It looks like you've made a friend."
"Oh, Chris? Yeah, he's cool."
"Is this one your's?" Liz asked, turning to Cadee.
"Oh, um, uh, yes!" Cadee stammered and then turned red, "I mean, he's mine in the sense that we're on the same team, but not in the same sense as you guys because you're dating each other and I'm not dating Chris and he's just on my team and-" Liz laughed and held out a hand.
"I understand. I'm Liz Ricarro."
"Cadee Michaels." Cadee said as she shook the offered hands.
"Takeshi Jin." Takeshi said, also shaking Cadee's hand.
"This is Chris. Our mid-fielder." Cadee said, "Chris, Shea told me to kick you in the balls, but I won't if you just come. It's almost over any way."
"Whatever." Chris sighed and stuck his game into his pocket.
"See you later, man." Takeshi said. The two boys bumped fists, "I'll make sure to add you later."
"See you later, Cadee." Liz said with a grin, "And good luck keeping track of your forward."
"Thanks. I need it." Cadee said, "It was nice meeting you both."
"Same here." Liz and Takeshi said as Cadee grabbed Chris' tie and tugged him down the hallway.
"They're going to be an interesting team." Takeshi said after they had left.
"Yeah, I'm looking forward to racing them." Liz agreed.
"Same here." Takeshi laughed.