HELLO! Oh my gosh, HI PEOPLE. Geez…can I ever say I'm sorry enough? Probably not…Man. It's been a YEAR at the very least, since I've updated! And I feel terrible! =\ I'm so sorry to keep you waiting like that for one measly update. Well, I don't promise you this one is amazing, but I will promise you it's something. So, without further ado, I give you, chapter 28 of Angelica! Please review? Thanks! Now….on with the story. ;D
DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT OWN THE POWERPUFF GIRLS OR THE ROWDYRUFF BOYS, OR ANYTHING, EXCEPT THE IDEA AND ANY MADE UP CHARACTERS! =D
REMINDER: THE PGG AND RRB ALL HAVE NORMAL LIMPS, EYES, NOSES, FINGERS, TOES…ETC. =)
Chapter 28: The Newspaper Article
P.O.V.: Bubbles- Age 37
Setting: Blossom's home. It's Sunday and it's been nearly a month since Angelica and Boomer passed on. Bubbles is staying with Blossom and her family until she feels up to living on her own. Bubbles is 37, as are all the RRB and PPG. Jeff and Justine are 15. This is where the story now takes place officially(In the past). This is where we shall be remaining from now on… for a while anyway. Enjoy!
"Where are your shoes?"
"Right here mother."
"I don't see them."
"But if you'd only come and look-"
"No need, just put them on dear. We have to go."
"Oh and Angelica?"
"Could you grab my scarf while you're at it? It's chilly out there."
"Of course mother."
"Thank you dear. We'll be in the car."
"Alright, I'll be right out!"
If only I could have the pleasure of speaking to her again. Even if it were just to ask where her shoes were, or something as mediocre as getting a scarf from the closet…
But things…aren't that simple. They're brutal, actually.
"You haven't touched your soufflé. I made it special just for you. Something wrong?" Blossom dares to ask, eyeing me with sisterly concern. I force a smile on my face and shake my head no, looking down at the asparagus soufflé Blossom crafted for dinner. It looked delightful, but my thoughts were wandering…endless…
"It's nothing Blossom, don't mind me." I insist, looking back at her. I pick up my fork and dig in, taking a bite. "Mmm, delicious."
"I'm glad you like it." She smiles, albeit unsurely. Brick is sitting next to her, and across from him are Justine and Jeff. They're eating and keeping to themselves. All is silent in the Utonium household.
"So," Blossom sighs, looking around the dinner table, "how was everyone's day?"
"Good." Shrugs Justine, a snobbish frown on her pretty face. Jeff pushes his glasses up and actually looks at his mother when he speaks, "I met up with Drake. He's conducting this experiment to try and purify rain water."
"Man, that kid. Always 'conducting experiments'." Brick rolls his eyes with a feeble smirk on his face.
"Seems like it." Jeff grumbles, looking back down at his food, "only I wish he would just stop already. He's way out of his league on this one. He always starts new projects without finishing the others! It's kinda annoying."
"Ugh, why do you hang out with nerds like that?" Justine hisses, poking her food. Jeff looks at her now, his red eyebrows furrowed.
"Hey! That nerd's my friend."
"Yeah, but you just said it yourself, he's a-"
"Children," Blossom interrupts, her voice firm and authoritative, "let's not fight at the table, shall we?"
Justine just rolls her eyes and mumbles an 'I'm done' before getting up and strutting off. Jeff shakes his head and continues his meal.
Blossom sighs to herself as she throws me a sheepish grin. "Kids. What cha gonna do?" Brick grunts at that and stands up, taking his dish with him.
"I'll tell you what I'm gonna do. That Justine needs a good smack in the face, that's what I'm gonna do."
"Brick, come on, please don't?" Blossom insists, watching him walk behind her chair.
"Why not?" he grimaces, "she's spoiled! She just up and left her dinner here because you told her to be quite? I swear, sometimes-"
"Brick." Blossom suddenly says, her voice serious, her eyes staring into his, "I know."
I felt odd, sitting here, listening to this. It felt like what Blossom said was so personal, so internal…it just felt wrong overhearing it. I unglued my eyes and looked down at my fork colliding with my soufflé.
Yet this has been going on for almost a month now and I've come to realize maybe I shouldn't have envied my sister as much as I used to.
Although things looked perfect for her on the outside, what really went on inside her home was another story. Blossom certainly had her hands full with Justine, no secret there. Justine would do things, it seemed, just to spite her. Almost as if she purposely disobeyed her just to annoy her. It didn't make any sense. And there was almost always a fight between them. Not to mention Brick…and his drinking problems. He wasn't horrible, but honest to god, if Boomer ever drunk as much as he did…
"Excuse me," I force another smile on my face while getting up from my seat, "I'll be right back."
"Oh, okay…are you sure you're alright?" Blossom queries, looking towards me, and I nod in assurance.
"Yes, I'm just fine. I just have to use the bathroom is all…"
"Oh, okay. But if you need me, just holler, alright?"
"Yeah…I will…" But before I can get the words out, Brick is marching off and Blossom calls out to stop him.
"Brick! Brick, you get back here."
"Why? I need to talk to that little brat."
"Brick, she wasn't that bad…"
"Yeah, but she needs to clean proper manners! It has to be enforced somewhere."
"Okay, but you know, I think…" I didn't hear much after that. I was in the bathroom, closing the door. Immediately, my eyes darted to the painting above the toilet bowl.
It was the one Boomer had made.
The ocean at midnight…
I let myself stare at it before the lump in my throat demanded my attention. A trick of water fell down my cheek and I mentally cursed myself for being so weak. Yet…yet what was I to do?
"Oh Boomer…" I whisper to myself, wrapping my arms around my body. I didn't come here to go to the bathroom. I came here because I needed to be away from people.
Slowly, my feet tapping against the multicolored tiles beneath me, I walked my way to the toilet bowl and sat down on it. I stared at the blue walls surrounding me, letting my mind drift, my throat ache.
The past month has been hectic and just awful. I can barely function on my own without breaking down. Like right now.
Suddenly, I went from a miniature trickle and a sore throat to full on bawling in a matter of seconds. Dear lord, help me. Help me God! My chest feels like it's going to burst and my eyes feel like they want to gush out of their sockets. I can't help but wail as I start recall images, memories of the two of us…Boomer and I…from younger, better days. And then, when I see her face…
Oh that sweet…angel…how in the world did I, could I, ever blame her for her father's death? The last words I said to her were ones of rage, not truth. If only I could take them back somehow…if only I could still be her mother…
But I can't. Angelica's gone. Boomer's gone. And I'm here. Stuck in this body, this prison. This horrible thing people call life.
And what? Do I get to see Angelica grow up? Live and marry? Have kids? No. Instead, I get to see Jeff and Justine every day, living their lives. When, no offense, my child was clearly so much better. In every way! Yes…okay, I feel just awful for saying that, but…but…BUT!
What do they have my Angelica didn't have? She was perfect, flawless! Oh so loveable! And what? Justine doesn't even respect her mother. Hell, I feel like smacking her sometimes! Does that kid know what she has? Does she know at all what a blessing she's been bestowed with? Brick and Blossom are so good to her. They go out of their way to make sure she has a great education and everything she could ever want. But does she appreciate it?
I don't know. I can't say for sure what's really going on inside her head. Maybe she does. Maybe she just doesn't know how to express it.
All I know is why should…should Angelica die when she had so much to live for?
And Boomer! Why him too? He was an amazing husband. I'm realizing that by the day! Brick loves Blossom with all his heart, I see that! I see the way he looks at her, treats her, and is protective of her. B-but Boomer…
There is no comparison. All the little things I took for granted about Boomer…Brick could never follow up. Like the way Boomer knew exactly how to make me laugh on a bad day. Or how he knew intuitively what was bothering me, or how he would know when I wanted coffee or tea, or…or…or!
"Bubbles!?" Blossom suddenly barges into the bathroom, her coral eyes flaring with concern. I hadn't realized it but somehow I had found my way onto the floor…and somehow, Boomer's painting, which had been framed on Blossom's wall just seconds ago, was in my arms.
"B-B-Blossom," I sputter through my tears, barely able to talk. My nose is clogged and my face is wet all over. I must've looked…ridiculous. But I didn't care.
"Oh my god," Blossom quickly finds her way to me and helps me up, "Bubbles! Are you alright? Why do you have…" her eyes trail down to the painting as she sits me up on the toilet seat. I clutch it tighter to my chest, sniffling and choking out sobs all the while.
"Oh…I see…" is all she says when she sees what it is. Her frown is apologetic, and her eyes search into mine now.
"Is everything…okay?" Brick asks from the doorway, his ruby red eyes glued to me. I don't even look at him. In fact, I don't even look at Blossom who's looking at me! I just stare at the shower curtain behind her…
Jeff is behind his father, sneaking a peak in here as well. Great, let's all look at Captain Cry- Her- Pants- Off today…
"No, no, everything's fine. Please, just…give us a moment?" Blossom assures him, and he makes a not so sure face, now eyeing her.
"You sure about that?" he asks, his eyes dwindling on hers. She's looking at him now with such certainty that it almost convinces me I'm okay.
"Of course. We need some sister time. So please?" she motions for him to shut the door and he sighs to himself.
"Alright then. I'll clean off the table…you done eating Bubbles?" When I don't answer he just mumbles out a melancholy 'I bet you are' before closing the door. I can hear him patronize Jeff for standing behind him like that, but I don't really listen. I'm too busy sobbing like a madwoman and hyperventilating.
"Bubbles? Bubbles, look at me." Blossom says when they're gone. I try to, but she has to take my face into her hands and force me to.
"Bubbles. It's okay. You hear me? Everything gonna be just fine." She coos to me, her coral eyes searching mine.
"N-N-No it's n-not…" I stutter out, barely able to breath, "I-it'll never be…f-f-fine."
"Oh yeah? How do you know that? The universe is a strange place and-"
"T-Tell me about it." I'm thinking about Angelica…
Her lips form a thin sympathetic line.
"Listen…" she looks down at the painting, breaking eye contact herself, "I know…you've been through a lot. A hell of a lot. Something no mother or wife should ever have to go through, actually. But…you've been good for a while." She looks back up at me now, "don't you want to continue?"
"And just…f-forget about them? About…e-everything?" I choke out, sobbing loudly yet again. She hushes me gently and rubs down my arms lovingly.
"No, no, God no, I never want you to forget them at all! I'm just…look. Bubbles. You grieve as long as you need to, okay? As long as you need to! But…if it takes your whole life to grieve…just think about that now…then why would you want to? Don't you think they'd want you to be happy? I mean, when will you be able to go back to work or leave the house without going into hysterics? Don't you want that again?"
"I…I…" I sniffled, "I d-don't see how I c-can try…"
"But how can't you try?" she stares into my eyes determinedly now, "You need to try! Knowing Boomer and Angelica, they'd want you to be happy. Or at least as happy as you can be, in this state…" an agonizing moan escapes my throat when I hear their names spoken out loud. It's like a death sentence for me. A cruel reminder of what once was…
"Shhh, it's okay, it's okay Bubbles. Listen…do you remember when we were little?" she suddenly smiles hopefully, "do you remember when..when Buttercup took your Octi away from you the first time? She hid it from you for days and you couldn't find it no matter where you looked? Do you remember how you felt? You said it felt like months instead of a few measly days… but then, you found him. Didn't you? And how happy were you then?"
"T-This isn't like Octi Blossom…" I shiver, dread in my voice with a hint of anger, "they aren't coming back."
She frowns at that, fully aware of it too.
"No…no I suppose they're not. But you can. Come back to us Bubbles. You don't have to rush it, you don't have to force it. Just…try. Promise you'll try? When you're ready, of course. I know, somewhere, deep down…there's that bubbly five year old left inside you."
"Really?" I ask, my voice shaky, my eyes void in any hope, "and how do you know she didn't die when they did? H-huh?"
"Because," she smiles softly, yet sadly, "they live in you too."
I spent the rest of the night in my room after that. Slowly coming out of my hysterics, calmed by the white guest walls surrounding me. I fell asleep around 1 AM, but that was the norm now a days. In fact, it was earlier than usual. The crying must've knocked me out.
The next morning was what? I don't know what day. But I figured, since yesterday everyone was home, and today, Blossom and Brick are out, it must be Monday.
With a sigh, I crawled out of bed and forced myself to take a shower. A long hot one. When I was done I dragged myself out onto Blossom's small porch and watched the delivery boy pull up front. He was around 12 years old and had a Yankees baseball cap on. He flung a newspaper at the front door and I stared at it for what felt like five minutes. When I looked back, he was gone.
It was Blossom's newspaper. The one she works for.
With much agony, I forced myself out of the wicker seat I was plopped in and picked it up off the porch floor. I sat back down with a creek and sighed before opening it and really looking at it.
Only, I didn't have to open it to see the most shocking headlines I've probably ever seen in my entire life.
Townsville Shocked! Bad Monkey gone Good, Finds Cure to Cancer?
My eyes bugged out of my head at that as I continued to read the article which was, unfailingly, written by Blossom herself. Man she must jump on new stories within minutes! She would've told me about this yesterday if she had known!
It read: Everyone in Townsville knows about the observatory at the top of the volcano, and everyone knows who lives in there. After all, who can forget something as remarkable as a talking monkey? However, Mojo Jojo, the villain we all remember, is not the villain we once knew. How can this be you ask? Locals all agree they remember the terror the monkey menace instilled in their hearts.
"I remember him coming in here and blasting things with that cheese ray of his," recalls Joe Baffy, proud owner of Grocery Markets on Gangang Street, "It scared me for life man."
Other business, especially banks, museums, and jewelry stores also remember the infamous monkey.
"Yeah, the guy just kept coming, you know? Like, one week he'd be in jail, the other he'd be stealing from me again. It was like, when will he learn!?" Cried Kelvin Speckledorped, enthusiastic owner of Jewels.
Albeit the memory of Mojo Jojo isn't a pleasant one, it has been years since he has robbed any of these businesses. The latest incident to be recalled of Mojo's lashings was this summer at Hudson Park. Mojo Jojo was seen at the crime in a robotic machine used to disturb the peace. He caused chaos and some injuries to onlookers, but no one was fatally wounded.
"You're talking about an ex-criminal here. Or at least, that's what he says he is now. The guys been imprisoned over 100 times! It's repetitive!" Police officer Dally Dose argues. Which brings about the big question: has the monkey menace gone good?
Eye witnesses have spotted him acting out of character recently, claiming the new Mojo to be 'calm and docile'.
"He wasn't, you know, sticking a gun in my face or threatening to kick my baby carriage away when I last saw him in the park." Reports a concerned mother of two. According to our sources, Mojo has been seen actually trying to help citizens and fraternizing, instead of antagonizing.
"I was just sitting in the park with my kids and he walked up to me, asking about my day and how old my baby was. At first I was really scared. He's a monkey, you know? You hear about monkeys losing it all the time. Especially Mojo. But he was really sweet, and he even picked up my baby's rattle when he threw it on the ground." The mother of two admits to Local News.
So is he making a full turn around? Some people are not so sure.
"It's silly to trust what destroyed Hudson Park just a few weeks ago, you know? After a lifetime of crime like his…I dunno, I just don't know. I'll tell you what, I wouldn't let him near my kids!" A man who wished to remain anonymous spoke out to Local News.
However, new claims about the monkey are being heard all around. Reports of lots of 'banging sounds' and 'machines going off' have been heard from the observatory these past few days. When asked, Mojo answered willingly that he was working on a new invention. Or rather, a savior.
"I'm just tired of being bad is all." The old monkey spoke out, "I want to make up for all the bad I've caused."
Mojo claims to be on the brink of discovery to curing Cancer, a lifelong process for some scientists. However, the monkey's brilliance outweighs most and with such an advanced mind, he has found some key components that look rather promising.
"It's all about taking known cures to other ailments and making them stronger. I do this through super foods found all around the world. It makes a powerful serum." Mojo believes he will have the cure within only a few short months, if that long. Scientists and doctors of all sorts are eagerly awaiting the serum, but are skeptical of his approach.
"There have been false solutions before, so it's best to not get our hopes up just yet." Scientist James O'cocker says. He and a few of his fellow scientists remain skeptical of the monkey's supposed cure, but others are not as stolid.
"I think he can do it. He's always invented amazing things, why not this?" an anonymous citizen believes.
The chances of Mojo Jojo finding a cure may be slim, but he has a lot of supporters as well from the scientific community. There is even a new Mojo Jojo Fund dedicated to helping the monkey find his cure, whatever the cost. Authorities will be staying on guard though, as to make sure for no tricks or scams.
"While it's a nice idea," officer Dally Dose agrees, "I think it's best to keep on your guard with this guy…For the people's sake."
I put down the paper and stared out into the street, my mouth agate. Mojo…Mojo was going good? But why? How?
There must be a reason, right? Wow…I couldn't get over Blossom's writing either. She knew how to add just enough information to keep you informed, and just enough to keep you wondering. If she doesn't win something for that, I'm not sure who will.
yet something inside my gut told me there was more to the story that met the eye. Something that sounded…not exactly fishy, but getting there. I suddenly felt the need to do some investigating of my own. And not later, not another day. But now.
With more resolve than I've felt since Boomer and Angelica's departure, I launched into the sky and flew for the first time in weeks.
And I headed straight for Mojo's observatory…
Thanks! And sorry for any spelling mistakes! Hope you enjoyed, and review! Or else I won't update for another whole year!
Oh, bad joke. I kid, I kid.