A/N: Okay, I know most of those who have me on author alert are like Who is Trixie Belden? Why is jennyelf writing about her? Trixie Belden is a series that I grew up reading and fell in love with while in middle school. Trixie and Jim are Mena's adoptive parents in my Harry Potter story Children of Prophecies. I'm just using the characters the way they were meant to be in this one. This plot bunny came into my head and absolutely refused to leave. I totally blame Mylee for that since I'm totally hooked on her Trixie fanfics. I'm still working on CoP, so don't despair, but I had to write this short story. There should only be one more chapter after this one. However, this story will be the prequel to a Trixie mystery that I have percolating in my head. Thanks for reading. Oh, and this is set present day, instead of when Trixie was originally written.
Disclaimer: I own copies of books 1 through 15 of Trixie, but alas, I do not own the characters.
January 12, 2010- Crabapple Farm
Seventeen year old Trixie Belden let out a stifled groan before resting her forehead on the open book in front of her. She shook her head and steeled herself to try to figure it out once more.
The slam of the screen door alerted her that she was no longer alone in the house. Aware that her mother had left earlier to go grocery shopping before picking her younger brother up from basketball practice, she wondered if her mother needed help unloading the car.
"Moms? Bobby?" she called.
"Honey?" she yelled back, wondering what could have brought her friend over from the Manor House.
Trixie poked her head out of her room to see her best friend climbing the stairs. Trixie marveled over how much her friend had changed from the girl that she had met almost five years ago. That girl would never have walked into someone else's house without ringing the doorbell first.
Honey skidded to a stop in front of Trixie's doorway. "Have you heard the news?"
"Honey, you know I have to finish my homework before I can do anything else once I get home," she answered. She heaved a huge sigh. "I've managed to finish everything else, but I'm struggling with my Calculus homework at the moment. Why, oh why did I ever think that I could pass Calculus without my resident math tutors here?" Trixie rapped her head against the door jamb.
Honey smirked. "I think you just wanted to give Jim another reason to come home and see you more often."
"Hmph," Trixie responded, crossing to her bed and flopping down on it. "If that's the case, I definitely crashed and burned on that one. And what do you mean, another reason? He doesn't have a reason to come home and see me as it is. You know that. I know I get daily emails, 'fond glances' and the occasional escort, but he was hardly around at all the past few months."
Honey sat down beside her best friend and wrapped her arm around Trixie's shoulders. "Besides the fact that Jim was super busy with college last semester, you still have managed to pull out a C so far in Calculus. That's much better than I would do. I know my own limitations when it comes to math."
Trixie sensed the change of subject more than she heard it as her head was still consumed by thoughts of Honey's redheaded brother. "Well, I just want one person to explain to me when I'll ever use integrals in my life, other than in Calculus class."
"Don't look at me for that answer." Both girls just burst into laughter and lay back on the bed.
Once Trixie had composed herself, she tilted her head at the girl reclining beside her.
"So what brought you all the way over here? Not that I mind you coming at all, but why didn't you just call?"
Honey sat up quickly. "Oh, oh, oh! So you haven't heard any news?" the older girl queried.
Trixie gestured towards her closed laptop on her desk. "None. I haven't even checked my email yet today."
"Trixie," Honey started, wringing her hands. "There was an earthquake in Haiti today. A bad one, which has lots of people missing or dead."
"Okay," Trixie answered uncertainly, unsure of exactly why Honey had deemed this information so vital and dire. Something tickled at the edge of her memory. "But why is…" Her brain and memory had finally caught up. "Wait, isn't that where…" she trailed off at the sight of Honey nodding. "Your dad, Jim, have you heard from either of them yet? Have they heard from Mr. Rainsford yet? Any news?" Trixie climbed off her bed to pace around her room, randomly picking things up, while thoughts ran through her head.
Ever since she and Honey had found Jim up near Autoville, Mr. Rainsford, the executor of Jim's uncle's will, had been a presence in both Jim and Mr. Wheeler's life. Whenever the lawyer was in country, the three of them would do something together. Trixie had thought at first that he just wanted to make sure that he had made the right decision in allowing Jim to be adopted by the Wheelers, but that thought had changed over the course of the past five years. The two men enjoyed camping, hunting and other activities with Jim. Jim had told Trixie that during their outings, it made him feel in a small way that his dad was back with him.
The last excursion the three of them had taken was just after Christmas the past year. Jim had been home on Christmas break from college and they'd ventured up to Vermont for some skiing. Trixie had tried hard not to be jealous of the time that the college student spent with the two men, but it was hard as she wanted nothing more than to spend all of her spare time with Jim. She still hadn't gotten over the notion that Jim was 'the most wonderful boy in the whole world'. She doubted she ever would.
Bringing her thoughts back to the attorney, she knew that shortly after their trip, he had plans to fly to Haiti on a business trip. Jim had mentioned something about the fact that Mr. Rainsford was combining business with personal reasons on this trip. Apparently he wanted to work on the amount of poverty he had seen in the country, especially in regards to the construction, or lack thereof, of homes. She didn't know if the older gentleman was still down there, but she was sure that there had to be a reason that Honey had come.
"I haven't heard from Jim today, which isn't surprising, considering that he, with the rest of the male Bob-Whites, just left to return to college this morning. I doubt that they've heard yet unless one of them was checking the Internet for something, like an email from a certain blonde," Honey said teasingly. She quickly sobered when she thought about what she did know.
"Miss Trask has already heard from Daddy, though. Mr. Rainsford is still down there, but at the moment, Dad hasn't been able to contact him. The authorities are saying that it might take days to find out anything. Daddy wanted to hop a helicopter and head down there right away, especially since he knows that it's going to take a lot of rebuilding based on the photos that are being shown already. Luckily, Mother convinced him that it might be best to hold off on that for a few days. But he's sending some of his workers down there to help with the clean-up. He and Mother are going to stay in the city instead of returning home, like they had originally planned."
Trixie stopped pacing to look at her best friend. "So what can we do? I mean, we're all the way in New York. I highly doubt that our parents would let us leave school to go to Haiti to volunteer during our senior year."
"But they would let us put together a fundraiser to help. Why can't the Bob-Whites plan an event for this like we did with the antique show or the winter carnival?" Honey said excitedly.
"This is why you came down here, isn't it? You wanted to get at least one co-president on your side right away. Although I doubt you'll have to do much to convince your brother to sponsor this one, especially since Mr. Rainsford is down there. But what could we do as a fundraiser? We don't want to repeat our ideas. A bake sale?"
"Trixie, a bake sale wouldn't garner much money. We need to do something that will raise a serious amount," Honey responded, tapping her finger against her cheek, thinking.
"What about one of those jail-a-thon things? You know where someone pays to have someone arrested and then the person arrested has to post bail or something like that," Trixie suggested.
Honey laughed before saying, "I think we might have too many people want to put you in the jail for all sorts of reasons. The number one culprit would be Mart if I'm not mistaken." She laughed again.
Trixie wrinkled her nose in thought, silently agreeing with her friend. "Well, then, what can we do? I'm out of ideas." She sat in the chair at her desk, exasperated with the lack of brain power she was displaying.
Honey bit her bottom lip for a moment before offering, "What about a Vegas night?"
Trixie scoffed. "In Sleepyside? It would never fly."
"Who says it has to be in Sleepyside? All the male Bob-Whites are in New York City, so why can't we have it there?" Honey said, sweeping her long hair over her shoulder.
"And just where would we have it? What exactly would be involved with a 'Vegas night' anyway?" Trixie asked, knowing her friend would have the answers. With her best friend bouncing up and down on Trixie's bed, Honey's excitement was too great for her not to have already contemplated a variety of scenarios for this fundraiser.
"Well, what if we rented a ballroom in one of the hotels? We could have a catered dinner followed by dancing and gaming. We could hire an entertainment group to provide the gaming tables and a DJ for dancing," Honey gushed. Her face was overtaken by a huge smile that was almost blinding in its brilliance.
"One slight problem with that, Miss Wheeler. You have to be eighteen to do any sort of gambling." Trixie pointed to herself. "Only seventeen. Plus, how would we raise money if people are winning it?"
"Ah, but we could have the fundraiser on your birthday. It's a Saturday this year and you could always ask for people to give to the charity rather than giving you gifts for your birthday." Honey paused to see what sort of reception she would get to that comment, only to be surprised that her friend was just looking thoughtful. She continued, "As for how we raise the money, well, people would know going in that all winnings goes to the charity. They'll just get bragging rights if they do well at the tables."
"Hmmm…" The more Trixie thought about it, the more she liked the idea. She knew it would take more planning than they had done in the past, but the Bob-Whites could handle it. They had come a long way since they were young teenagers planning philanthropy projects. "I like it. Shall I call a Bob-White meeting? We can schedule one for this Saturday. All of us will just have to conference over IM. I'm sure we can do that. You don't have any plans for this weekend with Brian, do you?"
"No, he's planning on staying in his apartment this weekend since he was just home. I imagine we would talk over IM on our own at some point since we normally do, but I'm sure we can squeeze in this meeting. I just hope that the boys will be able to help us plan this one since it will be held in their backyard. Well, I guess I should let you get back to your math work. I'll never understand why you wanted to take that course."
"It's all about making sure that I'm accepted to St. Joseph's. This class will look better on my transcript. Not all of us have our parents' money as a cushion, you know," Trixie teased her friend. Honey just shrugged at her, letting the comment slide since she knew that Trixie didn't mean anything by it.
"Trixie! Trix-ie!" her younger brother's voice echoed through the house no long after a car door slammed. "Moms needs your help unloading the groceries." His voice got closer and closer until he was standing outside her door.
"And why can't you help her, Bobby?" Trixie demanded with both hands on her hips.
"I will once I put my bags down," he replied. "Hi, Honey! I didn't realize you were here." With that, he ambled on down the hallway to his room.
"Manners, Moms and Dad tried to teach him some, but it never seems to stick," Trixie said to her friend.
"Trix, it's okay. I've known Bobby for a while. I'll let you go help your mom. Meeting this weekend, right? I'll contact Brian, Di and Dan. You just tell Mart and Jim," Honey said as the two girls made their way down the stairs.
"That's fine," Trixie said, with her mind clearly on other things.
"Bye. See you tomorrow morning." Trixie waved goodbye to her friend before helping her mom unload the groceries from the car.