A Sister's Promise: A West Side Story Fan Fic.
" Come on Jenna!" Riff yelled out to me from the living room. I rolled my eyes and opened the door slightly enough to show just my head.
" Two minutes."
" You said that five minutes ago!"
" Graciela can wait Riff and she takes longer than I do."
Riff rolled his eyes at me as Tony laughed. Tony was my brother who was a year older than I was. We were the best of friends though and had never argued. Even though Riff, Tony's and I's best friend who lived in our apartment with our mother, and I were close too we had our share of disagreements.
" But you see Jenna, Graciela is not as pretty as you are!" Tony complimented.
I stuck my tongue out at Riff and Riff rolled his eyes. I closed the door and fixed my dress and walked out.
" You see, not even two minutes!" I exclaimed. I wore an green strappy dress with a fitted v-neck on my upper waist and was slightly looser on the bottom part which was 3 inches above my knee and black kitten heels. Tony smiled and Riff went all " Aww" on me.
" I don't even know why you're making me go to this stupid dance!' I exclaimed.
" Because ever since Johnny from the Jets saw ya he couldn't shut his trap about you!" Riff exclaimed. " And admit it, you like him too!"
" Sure but do I have to go to a dance to prove it?"
" Aw come on!" Tony cooed putting an arm around me as we all walked out of the apartment together.
" I'm thinking tonight maybe the night I've been telling you so much about!" Tony exclaimed.
" Really? You think so?"
" Yeah! I just have this feeling!"
" Well I hope you get lucky tonight….just not Riff's kind of lucky though."
The dance in the gym was packed and divided. Ever since the Puerto Ricans came into New York, every white person in our neighborhood had tried to fight with them. Riff and the Jets have gotten into so many fights with the Sharks that even the police got involved.
I, for one, thought it was stupid and that if the Puerto Ricans wanted to live in New York they could, but my opinion certainly did not matter.
" Tony why aren't you dancing?" I asked Tony as we stood on the sidelines.
" I don't dance!" He protested. I gave him a grin and I pulled him to the dance floor. Ibegan to dance with everyone else. Tony and I had so much fun and getting him to dance anywhere was hard enough. But my ended when I felt a tap.
" May I dance with her?" Johnny asked. Johnny was cute as he had the perfect boy-ish face but I wasn't sure if I wanted to be his girl.
" Sure," Tony said with a shrug. I smiled at Johnny and we began to dance.
" You and Tony are pretty close, huh?" he asked.
" Yes, yes we are."
" You're lucky. He was a great fighter."
" I'm not close with him because he was a rebel, Johnny."
We continued to dance when I accidentally bumped into one of the Sharks.
" Hey man! Watch where you're dancing!" Johnny exclaimed. Riff came up to me.
" Did he hurt you?" Riff asked glaring at one of the Sharks.
" No, no, please, It was my fault," I said. I looked at the Puerto Rican and smiled.
" My apologies," I said. He smiled back and his leader gave me a glare when the guy whom I had bumped into said," Looks like there's someone in that area who has courtesy." The gang leader looked at me and nodded approvingly.
" Don't make friends with them," Riff whispered into my ear.
" Go back to Graciela, Riff," I said. " Come on Johnny."
The dance continued on when I turned and saw Tony dancing with one of the Puerto Rican girls. She was gorgeous no doubt, but the leader oh the sharks pulled Tony away and yelled," STAY AWAY FROM MY SISTER!"
The dance stopped and I ran over to Tony and was in the middle between the Shark and Tony.
" Bernardo we were only dancing!" the girls pleaded to the Shark Bernardo. Bernardo looked at Tony.
" Please," I begged. Bernardo and everyone in the gym looked at me. I looked at Tony and then back at Bernardo.
" I'll take him home, just don't hurt my brother," I said. Bernardo looked at his gang then back at me. His girlfriend even nodded at Bernardo.
" I'll let him go. But only because of the way you defended my friend back there and because you're the only one with some decency, unlike your friends."
I looked at Tony and grabbed his hand.
" You ok?" I asked. He nodded but seemed like he was dizty.
" Tony what's wrong?" He looked at the girl.
" Chino, take Maria home," Bernardo said referring to his sister whom Tony had danced with.
" Maria," Tony said with a sigh. I rolled my eyes.
" Come on loverboy, let's go."
When we had arrived home, I was lying in bed when Tony sat on the edge of my bed.
" You won't tell anyone I'm in love with her right?"
" Not a damn thing."
He held out his pinky. " Promise with a cherry on top."
I wrapped my pinky around his and said," Promise with a cherry on top."
" You're the best kid sister ever!" He exclaimed. He kissed the top of my forehead and went out to " run errands". I rolled my eyes.
He had never been crazy about any girl before.
The next day, I popped into Doc's drug store where Tony worked.
" Hey Doc!" I called out as Doc waved at me.
" Morning Dollface! Your brother is walking on air!"
I could hear Tony sing the name " Maria " all over again.
" Guess you heard about the infamous Maria, no?" I asked. Doc shook his head.
" You hear about the rumble?" Doc asked.
" So Riff told me," I said my smile dropping. " This is getting pathetic now."
Doc shook his head when Tony came up to me.
" Hey Jenna! I'm thinking about bringing Maria over to our place! Let her meet you and Mom!"
" Good luck when Riff is in the room and he's in fighter mode."
Tony played with my hair and I said," Tony."
He looked at me smiling but his face dropped when he didn't see me smile.
" What's wrong?" he asked. I looked at him.
" Be careful, please," I said taking his hand," things are rough and-."
" Hey, hey! I will! I'm Tony, remember?" He asked. He patted my head and went back to work. I sighed and left the shop.
That early evening, Riff and his buddies went out for the rumble when Tony rushed in.
" Hey Jenna!" he asked as I was sitting in my room. He plopped on the bed.
" Can you do me a huge favor?" he asked. I nodded.
" What now?"
" I need you to stay with Maria on the roof top. Get to know her and make her feel comfortable," He said. " Then I need you to walk her and I home so the Sharks know I'm not bad news."
" Anything else? "
" No that's it." He looked at me and took my hands.
" You're the best kid sister, you know that? Even though I'm probably getting on your last nerve and no matter how many times I get into trouble you always come rushing to help me."
" You're my best friend and brother, why shouldn't I?" I responded. He smiled and hugged me.
A few minutes after he had left, I put on a lavender dress and white shoes and walked to meet this Maria on the rooftop.
As soon as I arrived, I saw her dancing.
" So Tony's not the only dancing on air," I commented. Maria looked at me, a terrified look in her eyes.
" I'm Tony's sister," I said," I'm Jenna. He told me to wait with you. I'm completely harmless!"
Maria smiled and took my hands.
" Your brother has said so much about you! It's a pleasure to meet you!'' she said.
" Nice to meet you as well," I said," It's nice to see how happy you make Tony!"
" But he's always happy because of you!" Maria exclaimed.
" That's because I save him form trouble like I did last night," I reminded her. Her face fell an she half-smiled.
" I wish some were like you," she said," not afraid of us. So accepting."
" I like to believe I'm one of a kind," I said with a smile. Maria giggled.
" Of course I-."
We turned and there was Chino, the guy from last night. He looked at me with dagger eyes and pointed in my face.
" I HATE YOUR KIND! YOUR BROTHER KILLED BERNARDO AFTER BERNARDO KILLED YOUR LITTLE RIFF!"
I looked at Maria stunned and I looked at Chino.
" Impossible, Tony would never-."
" Look at my hands! They're of Bernardo's blood!" Chino sneered. Maria ran off crying and Chino shook his head.
" I will never forgive your kind or your family! Out of our land!"
" Your land? Hey pal, we were here first! Yea, Riff and his buddies jumped Bernardo his first day but you do not have to take your anger out on me or Tony! We had nothing to do with this! I have never done anything to you or your kind! Tony is Riff's best friend and brother and did it out of defense. I wish you all would end this damn war! There's no use in fighting! Now I will leave but only because I need to find my brother and if you ever speak to me like that again I will be more than happy to introduce to my fist for the way you talk to me or if you dare begin to talk bad about Riff and Tony. They are MY BROTHERS JUST LIKE BERNARDO WAS YOURS! "
Chino just stared at me and I walked away.
As I left, I wiped a tear at the fact Riff was gone. Riff and I had our times but like Tony he had my back through thick and thin.
When I saw a beat up Tony, I ran to him and hugged him.
" Oh Tony he can't be gone!" I cried. Tony held me tightly .
He looked at me and said," I didn't mean to hurt Bernardo! He killed Riff and-."
" Go to Maria! NOW!"
" Come with me!"
Tony took my hand and we ran to Maria's house.
" Wait here!" Tony told me as he climbed up the stairs," I don't how long I maybe here, but I will let you know what's next."
I nodded and hugged Tony.
Tony and Maria had been up in her room for about fifty minutes when I finally heard Tony come down the stairs.
" Tony what-."
" You and I are going to the playground. You help Maria and I leave this town. I don't know where we will be, but we will write to you and when I have a stable job and make some money I will send for you. Promise to look out for Momma and Doc. Work at Doc's for me, please. This is my last wish."
" I promise," I said choking up.
We arrived the playground. I looked at Tony.
" May I ask for one thing?" I asked. Tony nodded at me.
" Promise to write to me, like you said you would and don't forget me."
Tony hugged me as I cried and said, "I promise Jenna, I promise. You're greatest person in the world."
He handed me his necklace – a cross that Momma had given him.
" Wear this, and think of me," he said. I put it on and he hugged me one last time.
As soon as Tony let go, he saw Maria and ran to her when-.
" TONY!" I screamed. Tony, shot five times, fell to the floor. I turned and saw Chino.
" YOU BASTARD!" I screamed. I ran to him when the Jet's pulled me back.
" HOW DARE YOU!" I screamed," TONY AND I DID NOTHING WRONG!"
" HE KILLED OUR LEADER!"
" AND I WILL KILL YOU THE SAME WAY YOU TOOK OUR TONY!" Baby-Face John screamed. But Maria screamed," Enough!"
She looked at me and I ran to her as she held me tightly, She got up and said," Give me the gun Chino."
Chino handed her the gun.
" How many bullets are left Chino? How many bullets are left for me to kill all of you and then kill me?" Everyone jumped back and I held onto Tony's head.
" You didn't kill Bernardo, Riff, or Tony with guns or weapons but with HATE! Now I have hate too!"
" I do too," I said standing up.
" Jen come on-."
" Shut it Johnny."
I walked where Maria was.
" For once in my life I wish I could take that gun from her hands and show you how an eye-for-an-eye is really done. But Tony knew I didn't have hate, so for my brother…excuse me….my dead brother, I may keep that wish."
Everyone stood silent.
Officer Krumpke and Glad Hand went to Tony when Maria turned and ran to Tony's lifeless body.
" DON'T YOU TOUCH HIM!" she yelled.
The gang got together and they took my dead brother away. I looked at Maria and nodded and as I walked her back home.
I kept my promise to Tony. I looked after Momma and I worked at Doc's. I wore his necklace everyday.
" You're like Tony, you know that? You know how proud he is of you?" Doc asked pulling me into a hug. I nodded and stayed blanked face.
One day I heard the door open when I saw both the Jet's and Sharks walk in together.
I looked at them with a cold stare and Doc said," Leave her alone! You've done enough to her."
" This is from both of us," Chino said. Everyone in the group nodded.
They handed me a piece of paper. They named the playground they had once fought over Tony's Park. It was a deed and it had named me owner.
Anita, who was Bernardo's girlfriend came up.
" We may never give you Tony or Riff back, but we give you ownership," She said. I nodded.
" Thank you," I said half-smiling.
" And we had a meeting and we promise to not fight, but to work at being friendly," one of the Jets added.
" Thank you, I appreciate what you boys and Anita have done-."
" We didn't do this on our own," one of the Jet's said.
I looked at them confused when they turned. I saw Maria standing there.
I walked up to her and hugged her.
" Thank you," I said. She hugged me and said," No thank you. For keeping every promise you have made to your brother. He was very, very, lucky. I will miss him.
" Gracias," I said with smile.
" De nada," she responded.
Not only was my promise kept, but so was everyone else's. And I was sister to everyone but mostly to Maria. And like Tony if she had ever needed me, I was there.