Author Topic: Fortnightly Writing Competition JUVENILE DELINQUENCY (Voting to Dec 15)  (Read 435 times)

Baron

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Juvenile Delinquency



The world is your oyster when you're a kid.  Except if you don't like oysters and are determined not to put up with them anymore.  Then the world's a devil's kitchen of fun and mayhem!  From damaged children to pre-teen gangstas; from wayward youth to bad-ass babies: this is the topic where the young follow their own rules and shock their staid and settled elders into bouts of apocalyptic hysteria! :=

The rules are thus: your story must prominently feature some kind of antisocial minor who marches to the beat of his or her own drum.  The rest is up to you.

Possible Voting Categories:

-Best Delinquent Character
-Best Insubordination
-Best Writing Style
-Best Overall (Bonus Vote)

The contest will extend from now until Thursday December 7.  Then it will likely be extended at least once, but don't count on it 'cause you never know!  Then eventually I'll close the contest and we will vote. :)

Good luck to all entrants!  I look forward to reading your autobiographical accounts fictional creations! :-D

« Last Edit: Today at 02:17 by Baron »

Frodo

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I have an idea for this one.  I'm in.  :grin:

Baron

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Don't worry Frodo.  I'm sure there are many other AGSers with a misspent youth from which to draw inspiration. ;)  They're just hastily assembling front-men and setting up alias accounts before announcing their intentions to enter. :=

Baron

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"Ohhhh, we're halfway there!"

Sinitrena

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Autumn

As a young girl, she had liked September. She had loved the leaves that started to turn brown while it was still warm enough to sit under the trees in the park or stroll around with her sweetheart.

Now, she hated it. Not the trees, not the leaves crunching under her unsteady feet and her walker, not the smell of the autumn rains that started towards the end of the month, but the month itself. September didn’t mean happiness and love any longer. September meant stress. It meant obnoxious people who asked too many questions of the regulars and still didn’t know what to do. It meant that her tea was too hot or too cold in the morning. It meant that the cake in the afternoon was forgotten. But most of all, and most annoying of all, it meant that there were more people who wanted to play with her to strengthen her memory. They asked her to tell them of her youth. They played music on one of this cassette things that never sounded like she remembered it. And when she told them that she didn’t like it and to turn it off, they said that we liked it and that we were just tired.

We! Condescending brats!

She always thought she had it worse than the other residents of her retirement home because she was born in September, when the new elderly care nurses in training started and then got to organise her birthday party. They knew nothing about her. They didn’t know what she liked or who she liked. But of course they knew better. They had just started school and were excited to use their new found knowledge.

“Good morning, Mrs. Miller. How are you doing today?” one of the new nurses asked her on the morning of her 90th birthday.

She couldn’t have been older than sixteen. Her naturally brunette hair was shaved off on the left side of her head and coloured pink and glittery on the other. Unlike nurses in a hospital or some of the senior nurses here, the younger ones didn’t wear scrubs. This girl wore skin-tight jeans with holes in them that were too strategically placed on the lowest part of her butt on one side and her thigh at the other to be anything but intentional, and a black halter-neck top that left little to the imagination.

Eugenie Miller scoffed and put her hands around her cup of tea. Too hot. Typical.

“Is everything all right, Mrs. Miller?”

“What is your name, dear?”, the old woman asked with an assumed patience she had mastered to perfection in her long life.

“It’s Autumn, Ma’am.”

She sighed. “I didn’t asked you for the season, dear. I know it’s autumn. I wanted to know your name.”

“Yes, Ma’am, of course. My name is Autumn, Ma’am, Autumn Delgado.”

“Autumn – that is not a name.” These young people seem to get more and more stupid every year.

The young girl stood there rather forlornly for a moment longer, not sure what to say or to do. After a while, she repeated herself: “Is everything all right, Mrs. Miller?”

“Yes, yes, don’t cluck, girl. You can go.”

Autumn hesitated a moment, then she shrugged and left the old woman’s apartment.

The retirement home had rooms for the elderly that needed more care and apartments for those that only needed occasional help but offered cooking for all of them. Eugenie Miller lived there since the death of her husband about ten years ago. She hated it. Of course she hated it. The staff was horrible, the food hardly edible, the ‘social events’ a joke and the constant nagging of the nurses - reminding her to take her medication, telling her to be careful with the sugar because of her diabetes, asking her questions about her youth or her husband – was nearly impossible to stand.

She only liked her neighbour and so she smiled for the first time that day when Ursula Fredricks knocked on her door half an hour later.

“Have you seen this new girl?”, Eugenie Miller began without preamble.

“Which one? They look all the same.” Ursula Fredricks answered with the same air of long practised suffering.

“She says her name’s Autumn. Autumn! Can you believe it? What kind of a name is that?”

Ursula Fredricks just shook her head in exasperation and plumped into the same armchair she always occupied when she visited her friend. She took one of the cups with flowery pattern that stood upside down on a crocheted tea-cloth and poured herself some tea. She sipped and then put the cup down again with a sigh. “Too cold. Again. You can tell them every morning, they’ll never learn. - So, which one is this Autumn?”

“Oh, this one is easy to recognize. She has pink hair. Pink! Can you believe it?”

“Oh, that one. Yes, I know who you mean. She’s horrible, isn’t she? A few nights ago I called for someone to bring me another blanket and when she came in she had one of these walk-man on her belt and the music she was playing – These texts, it should be illegal, illegal, I tell you!”

Eugenie leaned forward in her own armchair to better hear the other woman. “You don’t say! What was the text?”

“It was some boy, singing that he had just killed a man. He had ‘put a gun against his head’ and ‘pulled his trigger’ and ‘now he’s dead’(1). Horrible, just horrible! I nearly got a hear attack!”

“I can imagine!”

“But that’s not nearly the worst of it. I overheard some of the other nurses talk – gossiping, you know how they are.”

“Yes, I know, gossiping is such a bad habit.”

Yes, yes. But hear this: This girl, Autumn, apparently she has a criminal record!”

“No!”

“Yes!”

“Tell me everything. What did she do?”

“I don’t know, they didn’t say.

“I bet she’s a thief. These young people have no respect for the property of others. No respect, I tell you!”

From imagining what the young nurse had done, they changed their subject to the latest episode of Law&Order and then to Roseanne(2) and from there to their own families and to their neighbours.

They still gossiped when Autumn knocked silently a few hours later. She opened the door tentatively and peeked inside.

“The dining hall is ready,” she said with a natural smile.

“Finally! I could have died in the time it took you to set it up!”

“Sorry, ma’am. Would you like some help getting downstairs?”

“I’m perfectly capable to walk on my own.”

Autumn nodded but the smile on her lips had frozen and a bit of the spark from her eyes vanished.

They strolled to the dining hall together, the arms of Mrs. Miller and Mrs. Fredricks linked like schoolgirls. If you listened carefully, you could even hear them giggle from time to time during their slow and careful walk. The smile thawed on Autumn’s face and when they reached the hall it was genuine again.

“Oh”, Mrs Fredricks cooed when she saw the decorations, “this is beautiful!”

Autumn grinned. She had worked hard on the decorations. She had stretched the tablecloths to perfection and had listened for hours for music she knew nothing about just to understand what the old lady liked. She had talked to the cook to make sure that the food would be to her liking. And she had hand-painted a sign saying Happy 90th Birthday Mrs. Miller. and smaller 17. September 1992 and decorated it with pictures of Mrs. Miller’s family, who couldn’t be there.

Eugenie answered her friend with a withering glare. All her goodwill had disappeared instantly when she saw the sign and heard the music. The opera they were playing - Die Zauberflöte by Mozart – was in her opinion too easygoing for autumn and only worked in spring or summer. Händel(3) was better for this season. The sign just reminded her how old she was and the faces of her children and grandchildren just told her how seldom they came to visit.

And the cake after the main meal was bland. As always, it seemed like the baker had forgotten the sugar. Eugenie pushed the plate away and stood up. For a moment she looked for her friend, but Ursula was laughing with one of their male neighbours and Eugenie knew that she wouldn’t want to be disturbed. And so she grabbed her walker from beside her – of course someone had taken it and moved it further away from her – and walked slowly and with shuffling steps towards the door.

The dining hall was in the back part of the ground floor, furthest from the main doors of the Bellevue retirement home. She had no idea where the name came from. If anything, the house had a rather drab view. Some years ago, the city had decided to built a new block of houses and now the look to the park and the artificial lake was blocked.

Eugenie Miller stood a while at the end of the long corridor where every door and corner looked the same. The pictures on the walls, supposed to make the faded grey of the walls look more friendly, seemed to make it all the more boring. They showed empty stretches of the sea or some leafless trees. The green linoleum squeaked under her shoes and the rubber caps of her walker.

The entrance doors were like the entrance to a magical kingdom – or simply freedom. Sun shone through the revolving doors and onto the only stretch of carpet that could be found in the public parts of the retirement home. It was hardly more than a rug to clean your shoe soles after a walk in the park.

Eugenie sucked the warm air into her lungs and let her head rest on her nape for a bit with closed eyes. It was difficult to tell if it was the dizziness that made her open her eyes again or the quick steps of someone coming from behind. Eugenie Miller turned around and tsked.

Autumn hurried along the corridor, a plate with about twenty pieces of her birthday cake in her hands. With an “Excuse me!” she passed by the old woman and met with a man in the driveway. Mrs. Miller hadn’t noticed him before but as soon as she so him, he was met with her disapproval. He wore his jet-black hair long and in his eyebrow sparkled a little silver ring.

Autumn handed the plate to the young man, kissed him an the cheek and then walk away in the direction of the park.

Eugenie Millers disapproving look first followed the man as he got into a nondescript white van and drove away and then Autumn as she crossed the street and disappeared briskly between the houses, flashing her bottom cheek to everyone who happened to look.

She took the same way, across the street and through the gap between two houses to reach the city park. But her steps were not briskly and fast like those of a young woman but hesitant and weak. Cars honked at her as the pedestrian light turned red far too soon as it always did and an inconsiderate boy on a skateboard nearly knocked her over before she had even reached the park.

Again and again she had to stop and lean on the handles of her walker, blocking the pavement.

There was no wall around the park. One of the trails lead right next to the street for a few metres and then bent downwards in the direction of the lake. The grass had been mowed not too long ago and only fallen brown leaves stopped it from being a sea of green. They didn’t stand too close together, but a gentle breeze had blown them all over the terrain. Every few steps, a wooden bench stood at the side of the path, some right next to it, some further back in circles of trees that obscured them from the views of prying eyes in the summer. Now they were as deserted as the rest of the park.

Nobody cared that an old woman couldn’t walk very fast and had to stop every so often. Slowly, she left the retirement home behind her and then the new public library that had now the view her home should have. With shuffling steps and the heavy fall of her walker, she strolled from bench to bench. Every second or third she had to take a moment to sit down and catch her breath.

It got more and more difficult to walk once around the lake as she always did once per week every year. But she had her habits and she was not willing to change them.

Her thoughts slowly drifted to her family – her son, who lived overseas now, her daughter, who said she was too old to drive all the way to see her, her oldest granddaughter, who was apparently pregnant again, her other grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who she didn’t really know and who wouldn’t recognize her on the street.

She was not in the best mood when she returned from her walk. It seemed like she was less and less often in a good mood as the years went on, her friends died and her family forgot her. And the city decayed more and more. The once lively park was empty and cold. The paint of the houses faded away and the only colour that remained was sprayed on by people who had no respect for the property of others.

And now they didn’t even have the dignity to do their crimes in the middle of the night but during the day, out in the open. She saw them as she scrambled up the sloped path that led past the public library. Five or six young young men and women – though boys and girls was probably a better description – had gathered near a side wall of the large building. They had masks over their mouths and noses and baseball caps on their heads. Loud music blared from a boom box on the ground. Sprays lay strewn around and from time to time they took them up and looked at them, maybe to decide which one to use.

Mrs Miller had a long time watching them and disapproving of them as her steps took her closer and closer to the group, although she would not have to pass them directly on her way back to the Bellevue. She was glad of that, at least. The young people scared her. They are probably drunk, she thought. Next to the sprays sat cans and in Eugenie Miller’s mind they could only be filled with beer.

And then one of the girls took off her mask and popped a couple of pills into her mouth and swallowed them with whatever she had in her can.

Eugenie Miller gasped. She hadn’t seen the girl properly from a distance. Her eyesight wasn’t as good as it once was and she always seemed to forget her glasses. But now the tattered jeans and the pink hair were obvious – Autumn Delgado.

Mrs. Miller walked faster, as much as it was possible for her, looking back from time to time in fear that the youths had seen her and could follow her. Her steps were still fairly slow and most people would have overtaken her without even trying. The cars honked at her again. No matter how fast she walked, the light was always faster.

When she reached the retirement home, she stopped in the middle of the entrance again. The sun had set meanwhile and sterile neon lights illuminated the corridor with a cold and still glaring light. The old woman breathed heavily and coughed a few times. Exercise and excitement like that weren’t good for someone her age. She didn’t feel safe in the corridor though. Only her small apartment gave her the pretence of home and security and so she shuffled to her room.

This night, she lay in bed and thought. In the afternoon, she just wanted to get away from a dangerous situation but now she got more and more angry. Such a behaviour was just completely unacceptable for a nurse in an honourable house! Nobody should have to bear someone like that. A disrespectful and overly sexual girl, flaunting her body to everybody and kissing strangers in the streets! Stealing her birthday cake! Taking drugs! Destroying property! A criminal!

It was too late to do anything about the girl so late at night. Iris Thomasson, the head nurse, had certainly already left for the day, and so Eugenie Miller fell into a restless sleep. She woke up often during that night and every time her thoughts circled around the same topic again and she got more and more worked up.

She was up long before Autumn could bring her her morning tea and entered the office of the head nurse.

Iris Thomasson looked up from the schedule she always worked on in the early hours of the morning before the hectic of the day began and smiled at the old woman.

“Mrs. Miller,” she said, “how are we feeling today?”

“Fine, thank you.” Eugenie answered, glad that at least someone still had manners in this house. She had always liked the about forty years old nurse. “Listen,” she continued, “I have to talk to you about one of your trainees...”

As it so happened, Autumn brought nobody tea this morning.

She was called into the office of the head nurse just minutes after her shift had started. She had no idea what this meeting was about but no matter how tired she was, a smile crept onto her face as she saw Mrs. Miller sitting on the single chair in front of the desk.

“Good morning, Mrs. Miller, Mrs. Thomasson.” Autumn said politely.

The grim looks of the other women unsettled her, especially when neither replied to her greeting. She rubbed her hands nervously and sour faces turned grim.

“Miss Delgado”, Iris Thomasson said after a moment, “I’m afraid, I have to let you go.”

“Let me go? Why?” Autumn asked, stunned.

“Miss Delgado, please don’t make this more difficult than it already is. I was told things about you that are just intolerable for a respectable house like ours.”

“Things? What things?” For the moment, confusion still reigned in her mind. She had no idea what was going on. She hadn’t done anything wrong, had she?

“We know that you take drugs. You stole and you defaced public property. You -”

“What? I did nothing like that!” Autumn had no idea what Iris was talking about but she slowly lost her composure.

“Do not interrupt me, Miss Delgado. You should be lucky we don’t call the police. Mrs. Miller here saw you spraying on the wall of the library and taking drugs.”

“I have a heart disease – of course I take drugs! And the library asked us to decorate the wall. They paid us!”

“Do not try to whitewash this, Miss Delgado. Such behaviour is unacceptable.”

“I...”

“And don’t forget that she stole a plate with my birthday cake.” Mrs Miller added with an air of superiority that came naturally to her.

Autumn shook her head. Tears had started to well in her eyes. Still it was sadness and fear.“I cleared it with the cook. He said I could take the cake for my group home.”

“Group home!” Mrs Miller gasped, “I knew she had a criminal record. I didn’t want to believe it. Can you believe it, Mrs. Thomasson?”

“No, no I cannot. Miss Delgado, we cannot keep you in our employment. I am very sorry - ”

“No, no you are not. And I told you! I told you!”, Autumn yelled. She had tried to keep calm but too much was too much. “You knew perfectly well!” She wheeled around and addressed the old woman. “You want to know why? You want to know what I did? Why I can’t live with my parents and why I wanted this job? My father attacked my grandma and I intervened and I... The court called it excessive force! I protected grandma. I love this job, you stupid old bat! I want to help! But you, you smug, bigoted -”

“That’s enough!” Mrs Thomasson hissed. “How dare you talk to one of our guests like that!”

Autumn fell silent and wheeled around again. Angry tears streamed down her face. She opened her mouth a few times more, but she had lost all her words. Silent, she turned around and left the room.

“Did you hear this girl?”, Eugenie Miller scoffed, “Can you believe it? Can you believe it?”

Iris Thomasson shook her head. “What a horrible person,” she said, “I am so sorry you had to deal with her, Mrs. Miller, so sorry.”


1) That’s Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen, very slightly misquoted. It was originally released in 1975 but was in the charts again following Freddy Mercury’s death in 1991
2) Law&Order, TV show, 1990-2010; Roseanne, TV show, 1988-1997
3) Die Zauberflöte is the original title of The Magic Flute by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Premiere: 30 September 1791). Operas are usually played in their original language, that’s why I used the original title. Händel is Georg Friedrich Händel, baroque composer, 1685-1759. He spent most of his life in London.

I'm sure you knew all this already (nod)
Edit: I should not type my notes when I'm tired. Two mixed up numbers corrected :-[
« Last Edit: 07 Dec 2017, 00:05 by Sinitrena »

Baron

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Excellent!  I was beginning to wonder if everyone had gone on the straight and narrow. (roll)

The deadline approacheth!

Frodo

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Ack, I've been sick the last few days and not able to work on my story.  :cry:
Can I have some more time?  Please? 

Sinitrena, I LOVE your story!  I feel so bad for Autumn - Mrs Miller made assumptions against her that were completely wrong.  :cheesy:

Baron

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Sure, I'm in the holiday spirit.;) Let's say new deadline is Monday December 11.

JudasFm

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I'll try and get an entry finished but no promises. I've been battling a cold as well and just want to curl up on the couch with a box of tissues and variety TV shows

Sinitrena

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Get well soon, Frodo and JudasFm. :) I`m eagerly waiting for your stories.

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They're just faking sick, trying to get into the delinquent mindset. :=

Mandle

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Family Planning

So, after Freddy had to leave to do chores, it was just Ken, Janey, and myself left sitting around the ouija board with our fingers on the planchette.

Lightning flashed through the triangular attic window, casting its elongated shape across the board.

Ken met each of our eyes with his biodegradable certainty as the thunder rolled in.

And he asked...

Let me just break my own narrative right about there by saying this: You get to know your siblings after a decade of living together.

Freddy was the eldest at 13 and pretty much the leader of our little gang. A bit of a do-gooder though, like the time he broke mama's favorite urn and admitted to it rather than blaming one of us. I always appreciated that he did that for us. But I saw it as his weakness.

Ken was a bunch of nerve endings with no muscle attached. At 12 he was still wetting the bed. He still watched Seasame Street and we all knew he was the weakest link. That's why I loved him most of all.

Janey, 11 and already a total bitch, had an aura that outshone even my own radiant purple-laced-with-black one. And I hated her for that. I kind of still want to talk with her now and then and maybe atone for that hatred. But it is too late for that now.

Then there was me, "little" Henrietta. At 10 years old I already outweighed my eldest brother by about the same count of kilos. I imagine now, looking back, that my massive face glowed like the full moon as the next lightning flash illuminated it and Ken finally asked...

"Erm... Is anyone there?"

All eyes went to the planchette and by the time it had travelled from "Y" to "E" and then halfway to "S" the next boom of thunder crashed against the roof of our attic lair.

Janey said "My turn, asswipes!" and asked...

I'll just jut back in here and add that growing up in a household where the black arts were as much a part of daily life as cornflakes for breakfast both was and wasn't that easy a thing.

Yeah, it was what I grew up with so it was normal in that regard. Midnight black mass on Saturday night was something to look forward to. There was no school the next day, and we got to eat a lot of sugary snacks and drink a lot of coffee to stay up that late. Listening to the rites read from the big black book got kind of boring but I guess we fazed out a bit and then suddenly it was time to watch the sun come up together with pancakes and lashings of blueberry preserves for breakfast. And cornflakes.

On the downside, that's probably where my weight problem stemmed from. I got bullied at school. I don't remember every single slur but you can imagine "Porker", "Bloat", "Balloon", or even "Behemoth" to fill those gaps as you choose.

When Janey asked: "What is your name?" I flashed back to a memory from third grade. Miss Robbins had left the room for a bit and the other kids joined hands and made a circle around me chanting "What's your name? It's "Porker"!" over and over. I curled up into a sobbing ball of lard. Inside my closed eyelids symbols made of light started flashing over and over and I had some kind of fit the school nurse said when I was waking up later while I heard ambulance sirens. Looking back now, I guess Rorey and Kim probably didn't just die from freak brain hemorrhages like the doctors said. It was a shame. I kinda had a crush on Rorey.

Coming out of my memorandum, I watched the planchette land on the final letter "Y".

Ken wet the bed without being in bed.

Janey screamed and threw the board end over end. It stuck to the sloped attic wall and the planchette bounced up from the floor and landed on the letter "F"

Lightning flashed through the attic window so close that the BOOM was immediate and the light so focused that it painted a huge triangle both across the room and over our childhood faces. When I look back now it seems that it might have been the flashbulb of the camera of God: A last snapshot He took to document our sins in case He forget them when He rolls Judgement Day out.

On its own the planchette rachetted from "F" to "R", then to "E", and then on to the inevitable "D", "D", and "Y".

It was my turn to ask a question.

I asked my eldest, and recently deceased it seemed, brother: "What do we do?!"

The planchette raced to the letters "R", "U", and "N" and then the ouija board unstuck itself from the sloped attic wall and clattered to the floor.

It landed upside-down, flipped itself over in a cloud of dust, the planchette raced back out from under a pile of unused-for-years boardgames and landed first on the letter "H".

It spun around a few times, clattering like keys in the car door when the killer is close, and then raced to "I", "D" and "E".

Footsteps sounded on the attic stairs.

Mama came up first with dad close behind.

Ken fell to the floor blubbering and was the first to die under mama's sacrifical dagger.

Janey made it as far as the window before dad clubbed her in the back of the head with, weirdly, a bowling pin.

I wiped the splatter from my face as I tore in on mama and my sheer bulk projected her backwards down the attic stairs. I heard several snaps but I knew which one her neck was. It was the moment I could no longer see her orange-and-grey aura.

I faced off against dad. He towered above me, his aura all black-and-autumn-leaves.

He went left. I went left. He didn't expect the anti-feint and I knocked the bowling pin from his hand as he swung it right.

He lost balance, stepped on the pin, pin-wheeled his arms, and then crashed backwards through the attic window. He didn't scream though. He knew his fall was much further than from window to earth and had already accepted that price decades ago.

All these years later I still have not repaired the triangular window in the attic that poured that broken, jagged moonlight in on that winter solstice night.

I still use the ouija board now and then to talk with Freddy and Ken. Fuck Janey, that bitch, she can rot with our parents in hell for all I care.

Ken mostly asks what's on Saturday morning TV and sometimes what's for breakfast on Sundays.

Freddy sometimes gives me good advice on how to raise my own children and how to bring them up so they will be ripe when the time comes.

I've put on quite a few more kilos since those times but the doctors tell me I'm in amazingly good condition for a woman my age with four kids each born a year apart.

P.S: As I wrote that last line, which I thought would be the dramatic ending to my story, a commercial on the TV for some show reminded me that "Winter Is Coming".
« Last Edit: Yesterday at 15:29 by Mandle »

Frodo

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DOUBLE TROUBLE


The front door slams.

A voice calls out



VOICE:  MUUUMMMMMM, I’M HOOOOMMMMMEEEEE.


A middle-aged woman appears in the hall. 


WOMAN:  Nikki, dear.  Did you enjoy your first day at your new school? 

NIKKI:   *shrugs*   It was okay, I suppose. 


Nikki throws her schoolbag down on the floor.  Her mother, Katie Chandler, frowns


MRS CHANDLER:  Nikki, pick up your schoolbag! 

NIKKI:  Why?  *rolls her eyes*   

MRS CHANDLER:  Because I told you to, that’s why. 


Reluctantly, Nikki picks up her bag, and takes it up to her room, then comes back down the stairs


MRS CHANDLER:  So?  How was your first day?  I want to hear ALL about it!   *smiles at her daughter

NIKKI:   *shrugs again*   It’s just school, mum.  Much the same as any other school. 

MRS CHANDLER:  You didn’t… get into any trouble, did you? 

NIKKI:   *frustrated sigh*   No mum! 


The Chandler family, including 15-year old Nikki, have recently moved to this small town of Meadowdew, after some ’trouble’ in their old town.  They’ve come to Meadowdew hoping to make a fresh start. 

Nikki walks past her mother, and goes through to the living room.  She flops down on the settee, picks up the TV remote, and starts flicking through the channels.  Her mum sits down next to her, still wanting to hear all about her daughter’s first day at her new school.
 


MRS CHANDLER:  Did you make any new friends. 

NIKKI:  Not really.  When’s tea? 

MRS CHANDLER:  Not till your dad gets home.  He was lucky to get that Manager’s job.   *pauses*   So what are your teachers like? 

NIKKI:  Strict!   *changes the subject*   Oh, did you see THAT?   *points to the TV*   He fell on his arse.  What in idiot!  Hahahaha!


Mrs Chandler takes the remote from Nikki, and turns the TV off


MRS CHANDLER:  Nikki, sweetheart, this is important.  You said you were really going to try at this school. 

NIKKI:  Tssk, I’ll be good mum, I promise.  No more fighting, or any of that stuff.   


Mrs Chandler smiles.  She’s been worried about her daughter, ever since that ‘incident’ at her old school. 

The front door opens again.  Nikki jumps up, and runs through to the hall



NIKKI:  DAAAADDDDDD!   *hugs her dad

MR CHANDLER:  Hello Princess.  Still in one piece, then?   *grins

NIKKI:  Yep. 


Nikki and her dad, David Chandler, walk back through to the living room


MR CHANDLER:  So did you make any friends at your new school? 

NIKKI:  Sort of.  There’s this one girl, Jennifer, she’s kinda nice. 

MR CHANDLER:  Good!  I knew you would soon make friends, Princess. 


Mrs Chandler watches them, shaking her head.  Nikki has always been such a Daddy’s Girl. 


Later that evening, Mr & Mrs Chandler are talking together in the kitchen



MRS CHANDLER:  So how was her first day at her school?  She wouldn’t tell me much. 

MR CHANDLER:  She did well.   *smiles*   I knew she would settle down, if she just got away from all that trouble.  Those so called ‘friends’ she used to hang around with were a bad influence on her. 

MRS CHANDER:  Ack, you’re too soft with her, Dave. 


Mr Chandler embraces his wife, and kisses her softly


MR CHANDLER:  This move is a new start for ALL of us!  And I’m damned well going to give it my best shot.  Our little girl hasn’t had an easy time, these last few months. 

MRS CHANDLER:  She’s not so little anymore.   *laughs*   But I hope you’re right, I hope she settles down now.  And who knows… maybe this ‘Jennifer’ will be a positive influence on her. 


Outside the kitchen door… a 15-year-old teenager is eavesdropping.  Clearly not happy with her parents.  She scowls, then slinks up to her bedroom. 




The next day, at school, Nikki walks through the endless corridors.  She’s still trying to learn the layout of the school, but right now, she’s hopelessly lost.  Luckily, Jennifer walks past



JENNIFER:  Hey Nikki.  What subjects have you got next?

NIKKI:  Double History.  But I have NO idea where the History room is. 

JENNIFER:  Double History?   *squeals excitedly*   So have I!  We can go together!   

NIKKI:  Oh, great! 


Jennifer links her arm through Nikki’s arm, and leads her to the History room. 


Before you know it, the first school week has passed, and it seems like Nikki and Jennifer have become firm friends.  Dave and Katie are discussing their daughter



MRS CHANDLER:  Her first week has ended, Dave.  A whole week, and not one sign of trouble.  Not one phone call from the Head Master.   *smiles brightly*   

MR CHANDLER:   *embraces his wife*   Didn’t I tell you?   *smiles*   All she needed was some distance from all that trouble. 

MRS CHANDLER:  And a friend who would be a positive influence on her. 

MR CHANDLER:   *nods*   Yes, and a friend that would be a positive influence on her.  That ‘incident’ in our old town really took it’s toll on her.  But that’s not going to happen here. 

MRS CHANDLER:  I hope you’re right.  She DOES seem happier now. 

MR CHANDLER:  Of course I’m right.  Don’t be so hard on her.   *kisses his wife*   


But once again, their daughter is eavesdropping. 


NIKKI:   *whispers to herself*   Pffft!  Shows how much YOU know! 


Nikki creeps up to her room, and quietly closes her door.  She flops down on the bed, with her arms outstretched


NIKKI:  God, I’m so BORED!!!  This town is BORING!  The people in it are BORING!  My parents are BORING!  School is BORING!  Jennifer is BORING!   *sits up*   Where’s the excitement?  Where’s the action?   *pauses*   I promised mum I’d be good.  Three strikes, and all that crap.  And who wants to end up in a bloody stupid Youth Prison?  But GOD I AM BORED!!!  I miss my old town.  I miss my old friends.  Can’t STAND this dump! 




Monday morning rolls around again all too soon.  Another week at school begins.  Dave & Katie’s daughter leaves early, and they are pleased she’s actually taking an interest in school. 


In the school grounds, before lessons, Jennifer runs up behind Nikki, and greets her



JENNIFER:  NIKKI!  Back for another week of torture then?  What were you up to at the weekend?   *grins


‘Nikki’ spins round, and glares at Jennifer. 


‘NIKKI’:  What the hell do YOU want? 


Jennifer looks at her, completely gob smacked.  What’s got into her friend? 


JENNIFER:  Um, are you okay? 

‘NIKKI’:  None of your business.  Now PUSH OFF. 


‘Nikki’ roughly pushes Jennifer out the way, and marches off.  Jennifer, feeling hurt, quietly makes her way to her lessons. 

At lunchtime, Jennifer sees Nikki again.  She approaches with caution.
 


JENNIFER:  Nikki… um, about this morning…

‘NIKKI’:  Yeah?  What of it? 


‘Nikki’ reaches into her pocket, and pulls out a packet of cigarettes.  She pulls one out, lights in, and inhales it deeply.


‘NIKKI’:   Ahhhhhh, that’s better! 

JENNIFER:   *gasps*   Nikki, what are you DOING?  Cigarettes aren’t allowed in school! 

‘NIKKI’:    *taunts Jennifer*   What you gonna do about it?  You gonna squeal on me?  Like a little snitch? 

JENNIFER:  … No. 

‘NIKKI’:  Good.  Then BUGGER OFF! 


‘Nikki’ takes a long draw from the cigarette, then blows it out into Jennifer’s face, making her cough and choke.  Jennifer doesn’t understand - why is her new friend acting this way?  She decides to avoid Nikki from now on


Tuesday arrives, and Jennifer is still hurt over Nikki’s actions yesterday.  She heads straight for her first lesson, rather than wait outside for Nikki, as the had done last week.  But as she pauses to take a drink from the school water fountain, Nikki bounds up to her


NIKKI:  Hi Jennifer.   *smiles*   I couldn’t find you outside.  I was gonna wait longer, but I don’t want to be late for my lessons.  I’m still a newbie, after all - don‘t wanna get in trouble with the teachers.  Hehehe. 


Jennifer just looks at Nikki, but doesn’t say anything.  The smile fades from Nikki’s lips


NIKKI:  What’s wrong? 

JENNIFER:  You KNOW what’s wrong!   *turns away

NIKKI:   *walks round to stand in front of her again*   I DON’T know what’s wrong.  Are you okay? 

JENNIFER:  Yesterday! 

NIKKI:  Yeah, I’m sorry about yesterday.  Was off sick.  Had the flu all weekend, I’m only just starting to feel better. 

JENNIFER:  Don’t play games with me, Nikki.  I SAW you yesterday.  You were really nasty!  Pushing me like that, and the way you spoke to me, and smoking, and blowing the smoke in my face! 

NIKKI:  But… I was off sick yesterday.   

JENNIFER:  Yeah, right!  So I suppose I just imagined you yesterday, then?  You were like a completely different person. 

NIKKI:  Jennifer, I… wait, did you say I was smoking? 

JENNIFER:   *nods

NIKKI:  But I CAN’T smoke, Jennifer.  I have asthma.   *thinks*   Oh no… OH NO!  It can’t be!   *turns pale

JENNIFER:  What? 


Just then, the school bell rings, telling everyone to get to class


NIKKI:   *quickly*   Okay, I know you think I was weird and horrible yesterday, but PLEASE meet me at Break.  I’ll explain everything. 


The morning drags on.  Finally, the bell for Break rings.  Against her better judgement, Jennifer goes to meet Nikki


NIKKI:  Thanks for meeting me. 

JENNIFER:  … You going to push me around again, like yesterday?

NIKKI:  No.  I really was off sick yesterday.  But I think… I think you must have seen my sister. 

JENNIFER:  Your sister?  Is that the best explanation you can come up with?  I’m not an idiot, Nikki!   

NIKKI:  We’re twins.  She looks exactly like me.  Not many people can tell the difference.   *pauses*   It sounds so cliché to say ‘One good twin, one bad twin’.  But… it’s true.  All the trouble she gets into… people assume it’s me, and blame me for it. 

JENNIFER:  You have an evil twin sister?  Oh, COME ON!  You really expect me to believe that? 

NIKKI:  … I guess not.  I can’t prove it.  But whatever she did to you yesterday… I’m sorry. 


A tear trickles down Nikki’s cheek.  All of a sudden, Jennifer feels sorry for her


JENNIFER:  What’s her name? 

NIKKI:  Her name is Sarah.  And I hate her.  She’s ruining my life… AGAIN! 

JENNIFER:  What do you mean? 

NIKKI:  We had to leave our old school.  And I had to leave all my friends behind, when we moved here.  She got into a LOT of trouble - bullying, fighting, stealing, breaking & entering, robbery, trespassing, vandalism, joyriding, you name it.  When she was caught with a deadly weapon, the police said, that was it.  If she got into ANY more trouble, no matter what it was, she would end up in a youth prison.  Then all the gossip started.  And the name-calling.  Then the threatening notes.  That’s when my parents decided to move here. 


Nikki seems so sincere as she tells Jennifer about why they left their old town


NIKKI:  … And so THAT’S why we’re here, mid-term, instead of start of the term. 

JENNIFER:  You poor thing!  That must have been horrible for you.  Your sister sounds like a nasty piece of work. 

NIKKI:   *nods*   I’ve lost a lot of friends over the years, because of my sister. 

JENNIFER:  Well, you’ve got me now.  And I’m not going to blame you for the things Sarah does.   *hugs Nikki


Nikki hugs her back.  And unseen by Jennifer, a smile creeps across Nikki’s face.  This plan of hers is PERFECT!  She’s fooled Jennifer into thinking she’s nicey-nicey, trying to live her own life despite her ‘evil twin’ - what a stupid, gullible fool Jennifer is!  She stays in her parents good-books.  But as ‘Sarah’, she can still do whatever she wants. 



Next day at school, ‘Nikki’ is sitting on the wall surrounding the school.  Jennifer sees her, and runs up to her



JENNIFER:  Nikki, I…


It’s only now, that Jennifer sees the cigarette in Nikki’s hand.  She knows Nikki can’t smoke because of her asthma, so this must be


JENNIFER:  Sarah? 


Nikki turns her head to look at Jennifer. 


‘NIKKI’:   *roughly*   What? 

JENNIFER:  Um, nothing. 


Jennifer turns to walk away.  But ‘Nikki’ jumps off the wall and grabs Jennifer.  She pushes Jennifer roughly into the wall, and holds her there


‘NIKKI’:  Give me your lunch money! 

JENNIFER:  I don’t have any.

‘NIKKI’:  Somehow, I don’t believe you.   *slaps Jennifer’s forehead*    Now GIVE ME YOUR LUNCH MONEY… NOW! 


Jennifer is afraid.  She has no choice but to give Sarah her lunch money. 


This continues for a few weeks - Nikki and Jennifer remaining friends, while ‘Sarah’ bullies Jennifer and a few other people at the school.  Nikki always feels so bad, when Jennifer tells her what Sarah did to her this time.  But gradually, Jennifer becomes to wonder about something:
 


JENNIFER:  How come I never see you and Sarah together? 

NIKKI:  How d’ya mean? 

JENNIFER:  Well, you’re sisters.  You go to the same school.  You live in the same house.  But I never see you in the same room together.  Even at your house, I never see her. 

NIKKI:  Pfft.  I spend as little time with my sister as possible.  Partly cos I just don’t want to be associated with her - and I don’t keep track of her comings and goings, by the way.  But also, I don’t want her to come between US.  You’re my friend, Jennifer, and I don’t want her to ruin that. 


It’s a plausible explanation.  After all, why WOULD Nikki want to hang around Sarah when she’s being so nasty.  But still… Jennifer can’t help getting a strange feeling about the whole thing… as though something isn’t quite right. 



A few days later, Nikki doesn’t show up for school.  Jennifer assumes she must be home sick.  So after school, she knocks on the Chandler family’s front door.  No reply, so Jennifer knocks again.  Eventually, a teary-eyed Mrs Chandler comes to the door



JENNIFER:  Hi there Mrs Chandler.  Nikki wasn’t at school today, so I said I would drop of her homework.   *holds up some school jotters*    Is… everything okay? 


Mrs Chandler lets out a loud sob, before indicating Jennifer to follow her inside. 

Inside the house, Mrs Chandler sits down on the settee.  She looks up at Jennifer



MRS CHANDLER:  Nikki… My Nikki… is in the hospital. 

JENNIFER:   *gasps*   WHAT?  What happened?   *sits down next to Mrs Chandler*


MRS CHANDLER:  Her father is still with her at the hospital - I only popped home to collect some of her things, then I’m going back to the hospital.  Jennifer dear, you’ve been a good friend to Nikki - you‘ve been a good influence on her, and helped her to settle down.   *long pause*   Last night… Nikki stole a car.  And she… she lost control of it.   *another sob escapes her lips*   They found the car crashed into a tree, with Nikki unconscious inside.  She’s in a bad way, at the hospital.  They say there was also a lot of empty alcohol bottles and cigarettes in the car, with her. 

JENNIFER:   Cigarettes?  Then it can’t have been Nikki.  She can’t smoke, cos of her asthma.  It must have been Sarah who stole the car. 

MRS CHANDLER:  Sarah?  Who’s Sarah? 


Jennifer looks at Mrs Chandler.  How can she not know Sarah? 


JENNIFER:  Sarah!  Your other daughter.  Nikki’s twin.   

MRS CHANDLER:  But… Nikki doesn’t have a twin.  She’s an only child.  And she certainly doesn’t have asthma. 


Jennifer looks at Mrs Chandler.  Suddenly, everything falls into place.  Why she’s never seen Nikki and Sarah together at school.  Why she’s never seen Sarah here at the house.  Why Sarah targets her at school.  Sarah doesn’t exits - it was all a ploy by Nikki.  NIKKI WAS THE DELIQUANT ALL ALONG! 


Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • AGS Baker
  • Rottwheelers
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    •  
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    •  
    • I can help with voice acting
    •  
  • Baron worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Nice.:)  One more day!

Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • AGS Baker
  • Rottwheelers
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    •  
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    •  
    • I can help with voice acting
    •  
  • Baron worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Well, I think JudasFM needs the time to rest up and recover, so I'm going to close the competition with just the 3 entries.  For your consideration:

Autumn, by Sinitrena.
Family Planning by Mandle.
Double Trouble by Frodo.

The voting categories will be as follows:

Best Delinquent Character: who was the best (or worst ;)) character at breaking rules and living life on their own terms?
Best Insubordination: what was the best rule violation?
Best Writing Style: whose words struck you like a spitball to the heart? ;-D
Best Overall (Bonus Vote): which work, as a whole, did you find most enjoyable to read?

Voting will run for about 4 days.  I will tabulating all votes over the weekend.  Good luck to all participants!

Best Delinquent Character: Autumn by Sinitrena
Best Insubordination: Autumn by Sinitrena. It was the most touching, seeing as she was innocently accused
Best Writing Style: Sinitrena, it showed both sides of the conflict in a good way
Best Overall: Family Planning by Mandle, the ending was really funny