Chapter 2: What Happened Next

"Well… This is, um…" Frank looked at Wayne, who had just arrived. They had the same shocked expression on their faces.

"Awkward." Elliot said to me. I nodded.

"Aurora, we need to talk. Alone!" Frank grabbed my arm and dragged me outside.

"What's this about, Frank?" I asked.

"Ora, you know I like you. You're like a daughter to me, so I'll tell you this: Elliot seems to be very happy with you. If you do anything to hurt him, I will never forgive you and I'll never let you forget it. I might even kill you, no joke."

"Don't even warn me about what would happen. You can be sure nothing will happen that'll make me hurt Elliot. I… He's my Zing!"

Frank's expression froze on his scarred face.

"Frank?" I said, waving my hand in front of his eyes. Nothing happened.

"Aw, sharks! I snapped his brain!" I groaned and changed into a bee. I flew in a small crack in the wall and buzzed around Dracula's head.

"Mavis, I'm so sorry that happened to you! But I brought your favorite! Look, wormcakes!" He pulled them out. The worms wriggled around. I buzzed near his ear.

"Curse this infernal bee!" He swatted me to the floor and was about to step on me when he stopped.

"Ora? Is that you?" He asked, afraid.

I popped up, as my red lipped, mocha skinned, raven-haired self. Aside from the fact that my hair was all messy and my clothes were wrinkled, I was fine.

"Oh, Ora-Bora, I'm so sorry! Are you all right? Did I swat you too hard? Do you have any injuries?"

"Drac!" I put my hands on his shoulders, calming him down.

"Trust me. I'm just fine!" I smiled at him. Mavis could see that this wasn't going to go anywhere pleasant, so she coughed loudly.

"Daddy, weren't we going to get on with the party?"

"Oh, of course, my little bat!" He swept his cloak around him and hurried away to the lobby.

"Are you all right?" Mavis asked me, looking at my face.

"Actually, I think I accidentally snapped Frank's brain. Help?"

Mavis sighed, rolling her eyes and followed me outside.

Frank was still standing there, his mouth hanging open and his eyes as big as dinner plates. Mavis thought for a moment and then screamed in Frank's ear. He didn't even blink. I grew frustrated, feeling myself get taller.

Whatever I turned into must have scared Frank because he let out a very girlish scream that caused Mavis to collapse in a fit of silent giggles.

I turned back into myself and cleared my throat, "So, are we good here?"

Frank just nodded.

"Great! Now, come on! We've got birthdays to celebrate!" I giggled and changed into a bouncy ball, except I had arms and roared every time I bounced.

"There you two are!" Dracula embraced all of us.

"Uh, Drac? I love you as much as the next monster, but would you please let me go?" Frank said, awkwardly.

"What? Oh!" Dracula practically threw Frank away from him.

Mavis and I exchanged glances.

Sometime later, Dracula clapped his hands together and Jonny appeared. Elliot spied me, but Dracula pulled him away before he could get a foot near me. Frank was talking with Mavis in another corner.

"Nice to see you again, Jonny!"

"Nice to see you again, too, Aurora!"

"Please, call me 'Rory'. The majority of my friends do."

"Do you consider me to be one of your friends?"

"Well… I think you Zinged with my best friend, so yeah. I do."

"Cool!" He smiled, genuinely.

We met up after a few of Dracula's usual 'Party Games'. What Jonny didn't know was that Dracula and I had talked previously. Dracula somehow persuaded me to pretend to Zing with Jonny. I don't remember agreeing.

"What do you think of the party so far?" I said, already knowing the answer.

"Well it's pretty…" His voice trailed away.

"Yeah, that just about sums it up."

"You played 'BINGO' and that stupid 'Charades' game, didn't you?"

"Yep. The least amount of fun I've ever had."

We both laughed at this.
"Jonny, I never got to say this before but thank you."

He was surprised by my comment.

"For what?"

"For making this the best birthday I've had in decades!" I kissed his cheek.

He had a goofy grin on his face when I walked away. He quickly snapped out of it, in time to say: "You're welcome, Rory!"

Elliot came over to me.

"Hey, Els!" I grinned at him, but then I frowned.

"Els, what's wrong?"

He looked at me, tears in his eyes, and said: "I've made a decision and I'm leaving."

"What?" I whispered, my happiness shattering.

"I've decided that…" He looked back at Dracula before continuing.

"You're not my Zing after all. I'm sorry." He said, not meeting my eyes.

My heart burst into a million pieces. Before I could stop myself, I kissed Elliot. When we broke apart, both of us were crying. I walked him outside.

"Wait! Before you go… I just wanted to say that you're the closest I've ever been to heaven and I don't want you to go now." I said, tears still coursing down my face.

"Rory-" He began.

"I'm sorry I wasn't your Zing, even though you were mine. I hope you find yours soon. Goodbye, Elliot! You've been a really great boyfriend." A tear fell onto the pavement. I ran back inside, sobbing. No one was in the lobby now, so I wasn't stopped. I went up into my room.

Once I got myself controlled, I went down to the lobby. Dracula was there, clueless to what had occurred between Elliot and me.

Dracula took me out to the pool, where a ton of monsters and creatures were.

"So, Ora-Bora, how do you like your party so far?" He said, bracingly.

"Drac, it's beyond amazing, but I lost my Zing." I sighed, now a small cloud.
"You Zinged with a monster?" He stopped in his tracks. I floated past him, and then retraced my steps.

"Yeah. I did, years ago!"

"But Jonny only came here today!" He looked at me.

"What're you talking about?" I asked, confused. Then, I became angry. Actually, I was pissed off.

"You set me up with Jonny because you didn't want Mavis to Zing with him. Didn't you?" I growled, evolving into a huge lava monster. Every monster stopped what they were doing and stared at us. The music even stopped.

"Oh, toadstools!" Frank cursed, covering his eyes. Mavis covered her mouth in surprise.

"Now, Ora-Bora, let's not blow things out of proportion! Let's not cause a scene!" Dracula said, trying to calm me down. I roared in response, spitting fire into the pool. It hissed and fizzled out. All the monsters in the pool fanned out onto the deck.

"You used me to get what you wanted! You never wanted me to Zing with any monster and you don't care that I did!" I could tell that my reaction made a huge impact on Dracula, as well as everybody else.

"You're a terrible father, and I wish I'd died rather than be taken into your care! The one great thing I had in my life is gone, and it's all your fault! I hate you, Dracula, and I don't want to live with you anymore!" I flared up and disappeared in a puff of smoke.

I went up to my room, now terribly upset. I rested my head in the crook of my arm and turned into a raincloud. I drenched everyone at Mavis' party, but I didn't really care. I could hear lots of them berating Dracula and consoling Mavis. I knew I would have loads of monsters knocking on my door tonight.

Sometime later, I went back inside, still blue. I looked at the picture of my mom and me on my birthday in 7th grade of monster school. She was holding me tightly, her raven hair shining in the candlelight. Her mocha skin matched mine, except I was furry in the picture.

"Wish you were here now, Mom. I could really use some advice," I said, holding the picture frame. A tear splashed onto the glass, blurring my mother's face a bit.