Monday, September 20, 2010

Cool With A "K" PART 23 - CHAPTER 8

I stood with Kathy, Alice, Jenny, and, yes, Chris, backstage in the school auditorium.
I looked down at my outfit; A white long-sleeved sailor-y jacket with gold buttons on the sleeves and the front, short white shorts, high heels (which were already killing my feet from just standing there), and a red hat. I was supposed to look like Jessica from SNSD, but I think I just looked like some weird sailor girl that worked at Hooters or something.
Kathy, Jenny, and Alice were wearing costumes a lot like mine, but Kathy had black-and-white striped shorts and a blue hat (she was supposed to be Yuri). 
Jenny had a black hat (she was Sooyoung) and Alice had a blue hat (she was Sunny).
Chris made his costume by hand and it was probably one of his worst creations, and that's saying a lot. 
It was the white suit he wore to Rachel and Chad's wedding, but it had a bunch of pins and military thingies on it and he had a black marine hat.
"I can't believe I'm actually doing this." I said, sighing.
Alice leaned away from Jenny, who was trying to put makeup on her.
"Please, Angie." Alice said nervously, "Don't talk that way. I'm still trying to stay calm about facing a live audience."
Chris took her hand and smiled.
"It's okay, you'll do great out there." He said, smiling, "I'm really proud of you for facing your fear."
Alice smiled back at Chris and said, "Thank you."
I couldn't help smile too. That was the old Chris peeking out for a second. The Chris we all knew and loved, emphasis on the past tense.
"Hey, hold still, Alice." Jenny said softly, giggling, "It's okay, I'm not going to hurt you. Now look up."
Alice looked up and Jenny gently tilted Alice's head to face her.
"Yeah, that's good." Jenny said, putting mascara on Alice.
Jenny smiled and held up a mirror, "See? You look pretty."
Alice looked at herself in the mirror and smiled a small smile.
"Wow, that does look nice." She said, smiling at Jenny, "Thank you, Jenny."
It was really nice to see Alice doing something like this.
For as long as I've known her, she's always been terrified of standing up in front of crowds.
I recalled in fifth grade when we had to present our history projects at the National History Center. 
A man and his wife went up to her and asked her what she did her project on.
Alice stared and stared and stared at them. Then, she fainted. I'm serious, Alice is terrified of standing up in front of anyone she doesn't know.
Over the years, Chris has been the only person who seems to have softened up her nerves even a little.
I was so busy thinking about Alice that I didn't even hear Chris talking to me.
"Angie! Geez, wake up, will you?" He said, snapping his fingers in my face.
I blinked at him, "What?"
Chris rolled his eyes, "God, Angie, focus!"
"Chris," Alice said softly.
Chris turned around and looked at her.
"What?" He said, with gentleness, but a little bit of annoyance.
Alice looked kind of offended, but she smiled and said, "Smile. You need to relax."
Wow, Alice just said what I've been trying to put into words for weeks. I thought. It's so simple, really. 'Relax, Chris. Just relax...'
"Angie!" Chris said, "We're on in, like, five minutes!"
"Did you even hear what Alice just said to you?" I said, loudly, but not angrily. I put my hands on his shoulders and said, "Relax, Chris! You're trying to hard to control me! No, not me..."
I looked Chris in the eyes and said softly, "Everyone, Chris. I know you want to be grown up. You have a boyfriend, you have a life, you want to be a teenager... But sometimes you really need to relax. Take a break from being a teenager and... Open your eyes."
Chris stared at me, speechless.
"I'm not saying this for me, Chris. I'm saying it for you, too." I said, "I think my brother needs some air. I know he's in there."
I smiled and patted my brother on the back.
"Let's do this!" I said.
Kathy and Jenny grinned excitedly and nodded.
Alice stood up and hugged me.
"I think he really needed to hear that, Angie." She whispered in my ear.
I stood back from her and nodded.
"Ready for makeup, Angie?" Jenny said.
"Ew, why?" I said.
"She put it on me," Alice said, smiling, "I think you can handle it."
I groaned and Kathy sat me down in a chair.
Jenny sat down across from me, "There you go. Wow, you two are so funny. Don't you ever wear makeup?"
"No, not really." I said.
"Well, then." Jenny said, giggling.
She started putting blush on my cheeks and she said softly, "You know, Angie, you're very naturally pretty. I'm not saying you need makeup to look good, you just need to so your face will show up better onstage."
I smiled. Jenny is such a sweetie.
"Really? You think so?" I said.
Jenny nodded and smiled, "Yes, I do. Now look up."
I looked up and she put makeup on my eyes.
When Jenny was finished, she said, holding up a mirror, "Okay, I'm done. You look really nice."
I looked in the mirror and smiled. I did look good.
"Wow, that's so weird." I said.
Jenny laughed and I said, "You did a really good job."
"Thank you." Jenny giggled, "I usually give girls makeovers at the sleepovers with all the cheerleaders."
I laughed, "You have sleepovers just for the cheerleaders?"
Jenny nodded, chuckling, "Yeah. No one allowed over besides the cheerleaders. It was Stephanie and Melonie's idea."
"Of course..." I said, laughing.
Jenny laughed with me and Kathy said, "Hey, guys. It's our turn!"
"Oh my gosh, oh my gosh, this is crazy!" Jenny said, standing up and fanning herself.
"I'm so excited!" Kathy said to her.
I walked over to Chris and said, "Hey, you okay?"
Chris looked at me and smiled weakly. He laughed quietly, "Yeah, I'm fine. Let's go."
"And now, Katherine Parker,  Chris Harper, Angela Harper, Alice Coleman, and Jenny Alvarez!" The principle announced, clapping with the crowd.
"Hey," Chris said to me.
I looked at him and he smiled at me.
"Good luck." Chris said.
I smiled back at him, "You too."
Chris turned to Alice, who was on the other side of him. She was shaking.
Chris took her hand, "It's okay, Alice. You'll be great."
She nodded, still quivering, and I saw a small smile.
We walked onto the center of the stage and the curtains parted, revealing a huge crowd. Much more people came to the school talent show then I thought would.
Alice's eyes widened and Chris whispered, "It's okay, this will be fun."
Then he let go of her hand and we got into formation. Chris and Jenny in front of Kathy, Alice and I at her sides.
The music started playing and we stepped aside, Kathy in the middle.
We did the dance and I tried not to think about how stupid we looked.
But.... Maybe we didn't look stupid.
I glanced at Jenny, who was doing an amazing job.
Suddenly, my confidence sky rocketed.
You can do this, Angie. I thought.
The music ended and we all posed.
I smiled broadly. They loved us.
I smiled at Jenny and she smiled back.
There was a long pause and I whispered to Jenny, "Get ready, they loved it!"
Then, something hit me right in the face. No, I mean literally.
A few people gasped, including my friends onstage.
The room seemed to hold it's breath as I wiped the pink goo off my face. Strawberry yogurt.
Then, just like that, people started throwing food at us. Food, garbage, whatever they had.
We all braced ourselves and Chris put his arm around Alice.
The principle yelled at the crowd to stop and we ran offstage.

Well, that could've gone better.

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