"If I cannot fly, let me sing." ~ Stephen Sondheim
Scarlet Sapphire St. Reeves had a voice unlike any other.
She had gone through this period in her life (one that her sister dubbed 'The Wannabe Period') where she had been quick to compare herself to the biggest stars. Among the subjects were Adele, Christina Grimmie, Lady Gaga, Madonna, Beyonce. Once even Elton John (to this day, she fails to realize where this theory had come from). But in the end, after mimicking their voices and seeing which one 'suited' her best. But, in the end, she stuck with the voice she had doubted in the first place. The one that she belted out in the shower, that she hummed continuously, that had gotten her the lead in the school play.
She was Scarlet Sapphire St. Reeves and she was special. She knew she was special and she knew her voice would carry her places that only others would dream of going to. Her voice said all she was afraid to say. Her songs displayed emotions she tried to hide.
Who said talking was the only form of communication?
She would practice her vocals. And practice and practice and practice. Doing scales and exercises specifically designed to carry her voice over for generations. She didn't even have a voice coach. All she used was practice and pure, raw talent. Her own talent. Her dad always used to go on about her God-given talent and emotion.
If she believed in God, she would have agreed.
She was talented. And she was going to soar. She just needed to learn how to fly.
It was the same routine that occurred every morning. That evil sadistic alarm that would numb the mind awake with its goddamned blaring and cause even the sleepiest of souls to shoot up in bed, wide eyed. And everyone disliked it because, well, face it: 6:30 AM was not a good time to wake up, especially when you were not a morning person.
Scarlet was not a morning person in the least. This is why she slammed her fist on the 'Snooze' button of her alarm clock and groaned, pulling the covers over her head and stuffing her face into the pillow. She attempted to preserve the heat and convince herself that it was Saturday (No. Better yet, make it summer vacation.) and that she could sleep until 3 PM. This would have worked wonderfully, if an obstacle had not been standing in her way.
Scarlet's twin sister, Ivy, was a morning person. In fact, she woke up at six every morning (something about getting her morning dance exercises done before school). And she relished in torturing her sister. One of her favorite methods was waking her up in the morning. And no matter how sleepy Scarlet was, Ivy always managed to drag her out of bed. It was one of her many talents.
This morning, Ivy bounced in, already dressed, and ripped the covers right off of her sister's body. "Wakey wakey!" she chirped.
"Mhhneyenedbln," Scarlet said intelligently.
The blonde rolled her eyes. "Scarlet, get up already. I don't have all day."
"No," came the reply, muffled by the pillow she was currently smothering her face with.
"Come on!" she insisted.
"Scarlet, I'm being serious!"
"Wake up, lazy ass!"
Ivy sighed heavily through her nose, the way she always did when she was frustrated. Her eyes glanced across the room, looking for something among the mess that would aid her in this impossible task. At last, she noticed her sister's iPod, charging in its docking station, underneath her huge Boyce Avenue poster. She smirked as an idea bulb lit up in her head, and walked over quietly. She turned the iPod on, tapped in the password (because she was her twin and she knew everything about her sister and, no, she certainly didn't trick her into telling or anything) and flipped through her sister's playlist, frowning at all the songs she had never heard of. Finally, she chose one, turned the volume up, and pressed play.
In no time at all, a Slipknot song was blasting its way into Scarlet's poor, poor eardrums. She let out a high-pitched scream (that she would, no doubt, deny later) and shot up in bed, scrambling for the iPod, which Ivy plugged out, turning the volume up even higher and piqueing away with it. "Catch me if you can!" she sang, dancing out of her sister's scrambling grasp.
Finally, Scarlet let out a low growl and, because there was no way she could sleep with that noise, climbed out of bed. She proceeded to chase her sister, who was laughing so hard that Scarlet was sure she was going to pee her pants.
At last, she managed to steal her music player back. "Get the fucking hell out of my room!" she screamed.
Ivy stuck her tongue out. "We're having pancakes for breakfast," she said matter-of-factly, before leaving and closing the door behind her.
The second she left, Scarlet let out a huge sigh, tossing her iPod onto her bed and muttering a couple of profanities towards her sister and her damn happiness at the morning. The sun shone through a crack in her curtains and into her face, as if pestering her to cheer up.
But she would resist.
And resist she did. Throughout her quick shower, she kept her eyebrows in an angry knitted position. As she slipped on her dark blue boy shorts, knee high converse, black tank top and army-patterned shrug, she kept her lips in an annoyed scowl. And as she bounced down the stairs, she only muttered a quick "Hi" to her mother before plopping down in the seat across from her sister so abruptly, she made the other girl squeak and lower her copy of Seventeen. The gesture nearly lifted Scarlet's mood and lips.
But not quite.
"Morning, bitch," she mumbled.
Ivy's glossed lips spread in a slow, sadistic grin. "Good morning to you, too, Sunshine!" She reached across and patted her sister's head.
Scarlet scowled and swatted it away, just as their mother brought their breakfast in front of them and sat down with her own meal, beside Ivy. "Hello, Scarlet. You look tired."
"Me? Tired? No, of course not." She sent a pointed look at Ivy, who stifled her giggles. "No, I slept like a log."
"That makes no sense," Ivy pointed out. "Logs can't sleep."
"That's beside the point!"
"And your point was...?"
"My point was that some sisters are sucky ... sucky waker-uppers!"
"Don't be stupid; that's not a word."
"I'm not stupid! You're stupid!"
"No, you are!"
Their mother sighed, rubbing her temples. "Girls ... Do you really have to fight in the morning?"
"No!" Scarlet said. At the same time, Ivy said, "Yes!" They glared at each other.
In the split second silence that ensued before more insults were thrown, Tammie decided to jump in with a phrase she knew would stop them. "The mail came."
Gasps were heard. Heads whipped so fast, audible bone cracks could be pointed out. And, instead of insults, questions were shot at the mother, who tried to hide her smug smile at getting them to stop fighting.
"Did you get The Letter yet, Mom?" Ivy demanded. Scarlet nodded, leaning over to listen more closely.
Tammie hesitated for just a second before nodding yes. The twins squealed happily, gushing over the possibilities that The Letter would bring. Both had applied to Kimiko's academy in the hopes of getting in, studying hard, and watching their dreams unravel before their aspiring eyes. Scarlet wanted to become a famous singer; Ivy wanted to become a famous dancer. And once they graduated from Alpha Academy, their goals would come naturally.
That was, until their mother uttered the next word: "One."
The two froze. One. One letter. One letter, two girls. One of them would be going. Scarlet spoke first, "Huh...?"
"One letter arrived. Not addressed specifically." Tammie reached into her sweatshirt and pulled out a sparkly silver envelope. Two pairs of blue eyes flew to it instantly. Ivy reached for it, then hesitated when she saw her sister doing the same. They avoided each others' eyes, not knowing what the other would do if only one got it.
Their mom cleared her throat. "Erm, how about I open it?"
Both girls nodded. "That's a good idea..." Ivy choked out. Scarlet cleared her throat uncertainly, but said nothing.
Tammie smiled wistfully at her daughters. "Now, girls, don't forget that, whatever happens, your dreams will come true. Rejection is just a roadblock in a star's life. Don't get too down about it." Her pep talk did nothing but increase their nervousness; nonetheless, they nodded, dying to read the contents of the letter.
The older woman nodded and used a long fingernail to rip open the envelope in one swift motion. Her hand fished around in it for a bit before coming up with an array of contents: a tiny booklet, a piece of paper, a pair of pearl earrings, and a little butterfly.
The other items were lost as two pairs of hands scrambled to grab the paper. However, the poor paper was saved by another hand, that swooped in and scooped it up, its holder sending the other two a sharp glare that clearly said, Calm down!
Two pairs of arms folded and stared, hearts beating.
Tammie's blue eyes scanned over the letter, eyebrows furrowed. At one point, those hues widened to an abnormal looking degree. She glanced up. "Ivy," she breathed.
In that one moment, when her sister screamed with joy and her mother bit down on her lip, Scarlet's breathing hitched. She felt like she had been punched in the stomach: it knocked the wind out of her and it hurt.
She tried to swallow the lump in her throat, along with the shock that the news brought upon her. She felt completely numb; she had told herself earlier that it didn't matter if she got in or not, that she'd find a way to gain singing fame without the academy. But now, she wasn't so sure.
Until her mother whispered, "I'm so sorry."
At first, Scarlet was sure the comment was directed towards her. Her mom, trying to make amends for the disappointment that was slowly eating her up. She offered a small, teary smile in return. But then she noticed her mother's wavering gaze on her celebrating sister, her eyes uncertain, chin quivering.
Ivy must have noticed it, too, because she stopped dancing in her seat. Tammie held up the letter. It read:
Scarlet St. Reeves, this letter has been sent to inform you that you are one of one hundred girls accepted to Alpha Academy for a year of-
Scarlet stopped reading at the point, as she heard the chair beside her scraping against the floor. She glanced up in time to see her sister, a blur of blonde hair, race upstairs, taking the stairs two at a time. Even from downstairs, she heard the door slam.
There was a split second silence before Tammie got up. "I'll go talk to her," she said.
Scarlet shook her head, getting up and out of her own chair. "No, it's fine. I will. I know how she feels."
She really didn't, but there was no way she was admitting that.
Tammie opened her mouth. Then, she thought better of it and closed it, nodding. She offered her a daughter a smile."Congratulations, Scarlet. I knew you would get in."
In spite of the current situation, Scarlet smiled widely. "Thanks."
"Ivy?" Scarlet poked her head in her sister's room.
Ivy was laying on the bed on her back, cracking her wrists and staring up at the ceiling. When her sister walked in, she sat up and gave a sort of half-smile. "Hey," she said softly.
"Hi." Scarlet took a seat beside her sister. "Are you okay?"
Ivy rolled her eyes. "Yes, of course. I just enjoy snapping at you and then making a dramatic exit. It's one of my hobbies."
Scarlet giggled, and Ivy smiled. But then the smile disappeared, just as quickly as it came, and was replaced by a thoughtful frown. "Listen, I'm sorry I acted like such a drama queen downstairs."
Ivy flapped a hand in the air, halting her sister's words. "Hear me out."
The blonde took a deep breath. "I was just ... really upset. I didn't ... I expected to get in. You know, 'cause I rock and all. And it was just a hard blow for me. One of those unexpected mood swings that die two seconds later."
"And trust me: I'm really, really happy for you." She mustered a smile. "I'm going to brag about you like hell. And when you become famous and perform all around the world, you can mention your amazingly awesome sister, dance wunderkind!"
Scarlet found herself grinning right along with her sister, leaning in and wrapping her arms around her slender body in a tight hug. "Thanks..." She wiped a few tears from her eyes; she felt like she was floating. This was too good to be true. She pinched herself, just to make sure she wasn't dreaming.
Ivy giggled, pushing her away. "Get off me!" she said, but she was still smiling, so Scarlet didn't take it personally.
The songstress shot up from the bed. "Last one downstairs gets the earrings!"
And as her sister whined about her lack of a head start and as she raced down the stairs like a cheetah, Scarlet knew things would turn out alright, no matter what happened. She was ready to take whatever Alpha Academy threw at her.
okay. i apologize for the horrible, horrible ending. i had originally planned to make ivy throw some huge, hissy fit, but it didn't fit her, once i read her profile again. this seemed more natural. unfortunately, it also seems out of the blue and super-rushed. *sigh*
anywho, i don't want to change it, because i'm the kind of person that doesn't do that kind of stuff, so i'm sorry if you die from the ... the rushedness.
scarlet is one of my favorite charries so far. :) she just seems so cool and down to earth! not to mention, she's a break from the usual girly girls and preps you see on the alpha academy forum; she's more of a punk. how awesome is that? :D
and, no, i didn't really forget to write scarlet's brothers into this (nick and johnathan). nick is at law school (dorms exist!) and johnathan is at a before-school basketball practice.
these amazing characters were created by iWriteStuff202. i think she did a fabulous job, and you probably do, too (you are all humans, right?). so all credit goes to her for making characters that are unique and believable at the same time! you go! ^_^
i'm really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really sorry about the late-as-fuck update. i've recently increased my amount of dance classes, started training even harder because track and field season is coming up (yay!) and i'm working on an original piece of literature (a oneshot, but it's something i want to perfect to the point where it goes, "bitch, please!"). along with this, i'm trying to figure out how to earn enough money for a new camera. and on top of all that, i'm trying to get into a private school for smarticles. i am not a smarticle, but i can be one if i try. and trying is hard (i have to pay attention in history class? whaaaat?).
yeah, i'm sort of feeling insane right now.
i'm still deciding the other characters for this fic, but i've narrowed the list down by an insane degree. i'm just itching to write kimiko; i think you'll like her. she's not much like shira, i'll give you that. ;)
i really hope you guys enjoyed reading this (the story, not the author's note)! i'll try to make the next update faster. pinkie promise. cross my heart and hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye.
enjoy, read and review! science has proven that those who review gain magical powers that allow them to produce ninja bunnies with marshmallows out of thin air!