2 weeks passed slowly, and soon, the 18th December arrived. Lucy, at his home, was talking to Yashy. Chirpy was here too, looking to both of them, without saying a word.
-But mommy! I wanna go too!
-I told you you can't come, Yashy.
-Why not? -asked Yashy
-I already told you. We will finish too late for you and Chirpy.
As Lucy took her ribbon, Yashy looked around the room fast, searching some good argument to force Lucy to let her go to the party.
-But... I promise I will not insult that slut! -said Yashy.
-Are you talking of Daisy? -replied Lucy angrily.
Yashy opened her mouth, knowing that it was a big mistake.
-I told you to not insult her many times. -Continued Lucy- That's my last word, you are not coming.
She went to the door, but before leaving, she turned around and looked smiling to her pets.
-But I promise I will bring you some candies from the party.
-Yay! -Shouted Chirpy- Candies!
Then Lucy left the room. Chirpy looked at Yashy, that was sitting on the floor, angry.
-Why girl-kitty didn't let us go with her?
-Because she is a tyrant. That's why!
-You want play something, mommy?
Chirpy sat on the bed, and started crying. First, girl-kitty didn't let her go to the party, and now her mommy didn't want to play. When Yashy heard the moans of Chirpy, she rose and said:
-OK, OK! Let's play video games.
Lucy abandoned her house and took the way to Sue's house. It was 9 pm. All the town was covered with snow, as it snowed the last night. In some gardens the snow was so deep that it was difficult to walk. A little and cold wind ran through the streets. The weather was really cold, but it had never bothered Lucy. Sometimes, she though she was invulnerable to cold.
She took a shortcut that took her to the middle of the town. There was few people on the streets. No one wanted to stay outside with that cold at night. The few people that she saw were hurrying to their homes.
As she walked, Lucy felt the concern in her stomach. It will all happen that night. She had taken a difficult decision... but was it right? Did she do the right thing by calling in Sandy?
The 3rd school year passed through Lucy's mind. She remembered the loneliness. The jealousy that she felt each time she saw Mike with Sandy. How he ignored Lucy when he was with Sandy.
She stopped and leaned against a wall, inspiring deeply, trying to calm down. She was about to have an anxiety attack.
Will I support it? Will I have the strength? -Though Lucy
Slowly, she recovered her breath.
It has to be done. Come on Lucy. You have to do it.
With that determination, Lucy continued walking. She knew that this would be so hard. But it was necessary.
Finally, she saw Sue's house at the end of the street. As she got closer, she heard the music of the party. She walked through the garden, kicking some snow out of the way. She stopped in front of the door, inspired two times, and then knocked it.
Few seconds after Sue opened the door, smiling.
-Hello Lucy! You are the last one. Come in!
The principal hall was now a great party. A magnificent Christmas tree was in the center of the room, with all the presents under it. In one side there were some table, and over them, all kinds of junk food and drinks. In the opposite wall, a music stereo was playing a rock version of the song "Jingle bells".
Near that stereo, Paulo, David and Jasmine were dancing together, laughing McCain was standing near a table with two drinks in his hands (probably, one drink was Sue's), with Amaya smiling on his side. Daisy and Abbey were chatting. Well, not really. Daisy was talking a lot, while Abbey only smiled and said "Yes".
And near to the tree, Mike was talking to Tessa. Lucy felt a sudden jolt of anxiety.
-You can put your gift under the tree, Lucy. -said Sue
-My present... I don't have it.
Sue looked estranged to Lucy. She didn't bring a present?
-It will come later. -said Lucy
As Lucy walked towards Mike and Tess, Sue looked at her. She wondered what did her friend have in mind.
Lucy went close to Mike and Tess. Mike was the first to talk.
-Oh, hi Lucy! How are you?
-Fine, can't you see it, Jerkface? -replied her.
-In fact -Tess said- you seem worried.
-Yeah... -confirmed Mike- Are you sure you are right?
Before Lucy could respond something, she felt a sudden movement at her side. David appeared from nowhere, wearing a Santa's hat, and a ridiculous white beard.
-Hey Lucy! Why you didn't take any present? You forgot about it?
-No. It's not that...
But without listening to her, David started searching in a big bag that he had in his hand.
-It is no problem, Lucy! Because David-Santa has lot of presents... such as...
And saying that, he popped out a little pearl necklace.
-As this necklace! -exclaimed him
-DAVID! -shouted Daisy- GIVE ME BACK MY NECKLACE!
David shouted a funny "Woops!" as Daisy started running after him. He ran in circles around the tree, holding the necklace over his head.
-Give it back to me! -Shouted Daisy.
-Only if you catch me! -replied David.
Abbey got in David's way, trying to catch him. But David dodged him fast, and then there were 2 people following David all around the hall.
For some minutes, everyone in the party laughed at the scene. Finally David got catch by Daisy, and he returned the necklace. When everyone stopped laughing, Mike looked at Lucy, standing near Sue and McCain in a corner some meters away. She was really strange that night, he knew her too well to not notice it.
-What's going on, Mike? -Asked Daisy as he putted her necklace.
-Nothing important. It's only... Lucy is strange tonight. She seems worried -replied Mike.
-Maybe it's because she forgot bringing a present for the secret Santa.
-Maybe... but... I don't think so. If she really forgot it, I think she would simply say that she will give it tomorrow. Or something like that.
-What do you mean?
-Guh... Nothing Daisy -said him-, don't sorry too much. It's OK
He looked again at Lucy. She was looking at him again, with her mouth half opened. As soon as Mike stared at her, she turned fast to look to another place. He had the strange premonition that she was... Jealous?
"No, it can't be that." - Though Mike.
But that feeling stayed in his mind. Could she really be jealous? Sue told him about what he said the night of Halloween, when he was over-dosed, and how it concerned Lucy. Could it be that? And why she didn't bring any present? Maybe she had any personal reason to not bring it...
He though that it was not possible. The only possibility would be that Lucy was Mike's secret Santa In fact, Mike was Lucy's secret Santa! It would be an almost impossible coincidence. But... what if she really was his secret Santa? It all would make sense...
He tried to shake those ideas from his mind. He was getting angry for nothing more than a clueless feeling. He took another drink and some junk food, and tried to have fun at the party. In that moment, Tess took a microphone from the stereo system. She was a little drank.
-Now guys -she said- it's time for dancing and karaoke.
As the music started, David, Jazz and Paulo were the first ones to start dancing, followed by Mike, being forced to dance by Tess.
-Come on, Alec, -said Sue- dance with me.
-I rather prefer to not do so. Dancing is nothing more than some stereotypical moves and poses .
-Awww, come on, it will be funny!
Alec expired slowly, thinking that maybe he should find a more direct way to express his thoughts.
-I don't like to dance Sue, that's all.
-Well -said Sue, with a little sadness in her face- as you want.
And she went to the dance floor to join the rest. Lucy and McCain rested alone near the wall for a few minutes.
-You know -said Lucy- It's not that I care, but I think that you should dance with Sue. She would like it.
McCain turned his head and looked Lucy as if he had not seen her before.
-You are strange tonight, Lucy. -he said calmly.
-What? What do you mean? -she asked.
-You never take care of any relationship that doesn't involve you.
Lucy didn't know what to respond.
-And -continued Alec- you are always provoking Michael, trying to prove that you are better than him. Tonight you hardly have spoken with him.
Lucy didn't say anything. She was a little shocked about McCain's observation.
In the silence of the conversation, the music seemed to become louder. Everyone, except Lucy and Alec, was dancing. The stereo started playing an old style rock and roll. Daisy was taking all the attention of the party. Maybe it was the innocent way she danced, laughing and having fun, or maybe it was for the years of training as cheerleader. But she was by far the best dancer in the party, driving Abbey to make some difficult moves.
Amaya was dancing also, when David grabbed her hand. He started dancing really fast. Amaya followed him, laughing at the funny way he danced.
In other side of the dance floor, Paulo, David and Jazzmine grabbed Mike and forced him to walk to the karaoke system. Lucy looked at them from the distance.
-I have made a really difficult choice, McCain. -Said Lucy.
He looked again at her.
-Will it make someone hurt? -asked McCain. His sunglasses seemed to glow as he said that
Lucy nodded with her head. McCain observed her for some seconds. He noticed how nervous she was. She was shivering a little, closing her mouth with strength. It remembered to him how she lost her nerves back in Acapulco, when Mike felt.
-Some times it is necessary to take difficult decisions -Said McCain.
-I... I think it is necessary. And I think that it will help, in the end.
They took a few seconds of silence, in which they observed how Mike was being forced to pick a song from the karaoke.
-Come on! -shouted Jazz- Pick a song!
-But why me? -asked Mike, laughing
-Because we are not the main character's in school's play! That's way! -answered Paulo.
From the corner, Lucy looked at Mike. She felt as if she was looking at him for the last time in her live. She knew that Sandy would show up at any moment. Even if she will come to the town for a few days, Lucy felt that way. Suddenly, McCain's voice make her come back to the real world.
-If it will really help in the end, it will be good.
Lucy said nothing, he only nodded and said:
Suddenly, the music stopped as Mike started the karaoke. Slow guitar chords were played from the karaoke. Lucy recognized the song.
-Oh no, not that song. -begged Lucy, in low voice.
The Kansas's song, "Dust in the wind", sounded in all the hall. Soon, Mike started singing:
I close my eyes
Just before a moment and the moment's gone
All my dreams
Pass before my eyes a curiosity.
Lucy sang as well in whispers. She closed her eyes, and remembered all the years she passed with Mike. She could not prevent to feel that she was about to lose him forever. She hoped that she was wrong with that, that he will stay with her... even with the presence of Sandy. But that fear was too well nailed in Lucy's soul.
Dust in the wind.
All they are is dust in the wind.
Lucy sang louder little by little, closing her eyes. She loved that song, and it fitted perfectly with her emotions. She continued raising her voice, making an unwilling duo with mike. The song continued for almost 2 minutes. Everyone stopped the chatter, until the song ended. When Lucy opened her eyes, everyone was looking at her, and they started clapping.
-Yeah! -shouted David- Now sing a Christmas song!
-No, better something from Iron Maiden! -said Paulo
Lucy felt terribly ashamed, and tried to hide behind the tree, near McCain. He looked at her.
-You should never sing "Gloomy Sunday". You will make someone commit suicide.
-Shut it McCain! -said her.
Then, Sue talked through the microphone.
-Guys, that is a good moment for unwrap our presents!
Everyone said "Yeah!", and the gifts were given. Lucy felt a sudden bolt of adrenaline in her stomach.
"Damn, where is she?" she though.
She walked to a solitary corner and took her cellphone. She searched in the guide for Sandy's phone number, and called her. Few beeps after, the accented voice of Sandy responded.
-Where are you? -asked Lucy directly.
-I just came down from the bus, I will be there in some minutes.
-Be fast please.
As she closed her cellphone, someone gave a little wrapped box to Lucy. She looked at her friends, that were unwrapping the presents. Paulo screamed as he discovered his new cellphone.
-Wooo! WOW! Thanks! -he exclaimed
-I hope you like it Paulo. -replied Tess.
-How does it work! -he asked anxiously
-Easy, you power it with that button...
Near of them, David was holding a football ball, and Daisy hugged a huge teddy bear. Sue laughed frankly when she discovered a calendar with a photo of her, and the message "Sue for president!". McCain received a utility knife, Amaya a little necklace... and so on, everyone had his present... except Mike.
Lucy unwrapped her present slowly. In a little transparent box, there was a little bracelet. And, attached to the box, letter:
"I hope our friendship will last forever."
She looked at Mike as she recognized his letter. He was looking at her, with his arms crossed over his chest. He was really disappointed. Lucy joined the group to thank Michael for the present. But as she get closer, Mike turned over his feet and walked a few steps away. She heard him saying something she did not understand. Abbey was close to him, and said:
-Mike, try to calm down...
-Calm down? -he said- Yeah, as always!
Lucy tried to talk. She had to tell him that his gift was on the way... but he didn't let her talk.
-I though we went all around this!
-Mike, listen... the fact is... -started Lucy
-That you didn't give your present! Oh, let me guess, You forgot! -Said him in anger.
-Dude, you are making a mountain from nothing! -said Paulo.
-Oh, Shut up! -responded Mike- Maybe you will like to be her rebound again!
Paulo, out of his mind, advanced to Mike, but Jazzmine put herself in the way and stopped him. Lucy got angry with Mike's reaction.
-You jerk face! My rebounds are nothing of your business! Can't you ever listen when we talk?
-Oh yeah, I know. You will now dance around the problem to evade it! But not this time, because I will say it. YOU CAN'T ACCEPT THAT I DON'T LOVE YOU!
After that shout, a heavy silence covered the hall. Lucy felt her soul dropping to her feet. She could not breath properly, and all she could feel was her need of getting out of the house.
Everyone looked how Lucy ran to the door and opened it. She stopped a moment, looking through it. Then, she turned her head and looked at Mike, with the tears about to drop out from her eyes.
-Merry Christmas, Mike.
She stood apart, and a girl entered in the hall. A white cat with black long hair over her head. She was dressing an adjusted coat and had a little bag in her hands. She looked at the hall, and as she saw Mike, she said:
-Sa... Sandy? -said him.
But, before he could say anything else, Sandy run to his arms and kissed him, for some seconds. When he was able to look again to the door, Lucy wasn't here.
At his side, Paulo closed his fist with anger, looking at Mike. Slowly, he turned to look at Jasmine.
She nodded with the head, and said:
-Go after her. See you tomorrow.
Paulo kissed Jasmine briefly and ran through the door, following Lucy. Sandy looked at Paulo, and then at Mike.
-What's going on, Maishul?
He didn't know what to respond.
Paulo went out of the house looking for Lucy. He could not see her, but he saw her foot traces in the snow. He followed them, running. It was not easy to run, as the snow was deep, and it was very dark, as there was no moon. But soon, he noticed she was heading to the river.
After some minutes of running, he found her. She was seating under an snowed tree. The same tree where she sat so many times with Mike. She had her face covered with her arms. Paulo stopped some meters away, and walked slowly to her. He could hear her crying. Slowly, he went on his kneels, and touched her in her back. She looked at Paulo. Her face was broken in tears. He felt terribly sad for his friend.
Lucy talked, crying.
-It didn't work! I though that would be a good idea, that it would help me... But I feel worst than ever!
She covered her face again with her hands. Paulo hugged her, and whispered:
-You are not alone, Lucy.
From the distance, Augustus observed the scene. He took his cellphone, called to someone.
Now we are getting to the point of that fanfict... and it has just started. You will see...
I thank the reviews, and if there is something that doesn't work, I will be glad to listen to your critics.