“Who is Zin Pinot Noir?”
“I am not exactly sure. Honey.”
“Where did you hear that name sweetheart?”
“Why mom do you know her?”
“Well yes. That was one of my half sisters. My fathers last name was Pinot Noir, but I have not spoke of him in ages.”
“Honey where did you hear that name?”
“Well…I kinda met her.”
“You met her….?”
“Honey that is impossible. She has been gone for many many years. Long before you were ever born.”
“I know that. I met her in my dream.”
Both my mother and grandmother looked at me with the most freaked out looks I had ever seen. I quickly dropped the conversation.
That was the first and last time I ever shared my dreams with anyone again. No one needed to tell me it was freaky and weird. The looks on their faces said it clearly enough. I was a freak.
Well maybe a freak is one step too far. I was odd, thats a little nicer way to put it. I had always wondered if my sisters had the same dreams, but I don’t think they did. If they had, maybe they had learned from my experience to just keep their mouths shut. No… I am pretty sure it was just me.
I was always a little different from them. When we would go to school they would always sit together on the bus, talking and laughing and where was I?
I liked to ride my bike to school. I would follow right behind the bus, sometimes they would sit at the back and wave at me through the window. We had our differences sure, but we loved each other all the same. I tried a few times to get them to ride with me, but poor Pumpkin was a little squeamish about bikes, and Persimmon had become pretty protective of her since “that night”.
“Sorry Saffron, maybe some other time. OK?”
I had always been big on family. Unlike my sisters I much preferred the company of the fam. By the time we were in high school, Persimmon and Pumpkin had a close knit group of friends and acquaintances. I still had Grandma. She was much more fun and interesting than some weirdo high school girls any ways, and after Pappa had died, I tried to spend as much time with her as I could.
I think my biggest concern was the fact I had never seen her cry. Even the night it happened, she kept a brave face. You could see her heart breaking, but no tears were ever shed. To me that did not seem very healthy. It was around that same time we were learning about grief in our psychology class, and they taught us crying was actually an excellent way to release stress and anxiety. Maybe Pumpkin should have cried more often!
In all seriousness though, we did worry about her. Orange Blossom tried on many occasions to ask how she was doing. Always the same response. ” I am fine dear.” We all desperately hoped that she was.
It was almost two months to the day after Pappa had passed, when I heard crying from the back yard. We had built a tiny mausoleum in very back corner of the property, and that is where we buried him. My bedroom faced the back wall of the house so I could easily see from my window what was going on. I opened my blinds, and there was Gramma sobbing as she stood just before Pappa’s grave. I wanted to run out an hug her, but I felt it was best to just let her have some time alone with him.
Mom also took Pappa’s death pretty hard. She took her grief out through her martial arts though. Believe it or not her Sensei was still alive! Old as dirt, but still kickin. He had gotten back in contact with her not long after we had moved to Twizzlerbrook. He was interested in starting up a studio in town and was hoping his star pupil would run it.
Poor mom who had always been stuck at home with us girls jumped at the chance to get out of the house. Doing what she loved and getting paid for it sounded like a pretty sweet deal to her. Since by then we were all old enough to take care of ourselves, there was no reason why she couldn’t. It worked well in many different ways come to think of it, but I think the most important was it kept her mind off worrying about Dad.
His job with the fire department was incredibly dangerous. I remember hearing about his heroics at the school. Orange Blossom was so proud that she was there to witness it. Dad had saved many lives through out the years. He was quite a man. “Fire can strike anywhere.” He would say to us.
I guess he was right. One time he even had to respond to a call at Uncle Peche’s house. Forrest had been baking some muffins in his easy bake oven, when there was a short in the wiring. Unfortunately where the oven sat, there was a couch not too far away. A spark hit the couch and the whole room went up in flames. Violetberry had been at the house watching Forrest, while Uncle Peche was at work.
She was able to get Forrest to safety, but failed to get her herself out. She was trapped when Dad arrived.
He had to end up breaking in the front door so he could get to her.
She was a little more than frazzled by the time the whole ordeal was over. He did finally get her to safety though. Poor Forrest had nightmares for months afterward.
Dad’s stories were known far and wide. Even Almond was also a huge fan of Dad. I guess he was also there during that famous school fire. I personally didn’t know him very well though. He was Senior by the time I entered high school, and freshman didn’t socialize with seniors, even if they were related.
Orange on the other hand was never like that. She was the same year as Almond, but she liked to ignore the social confines. We even got to hang out with her at lunch sometimes. That was quite an honor to sit with the seniors you know. Orange was an awesome big sister. I admired her for all that she did. She was always willing to lend a hand when it came to school and study.
Berry knows poor Pumpkin needed it.
Persimmon was a lot like Orange when it came to school. She was incredibly smart and was almost always the first to get her homework done; then she would sit on the computer for hours talking to her online boyfriend. I don’t know how you could be boyfriends with someone you had never met before, but she seemed to like him A LOT.
P3rsimm0n245: *Cuddles on the couch and falls asleep in your arms*
R0m3o5Ip *Strokes your hair*
Ughh someone gag with me a spoon…
I guess that brings us back to me. I suppose I did alright in school. The tutoring I received from Orange in Elementary school really helped me out tremendously. I too was always in a rush to get my homework done, but not for the same reasons as Persimmon. No my love was not a boy, it was art. I never felt more happy and free than when I was painting. I had big hopes of working in an art gallery or museum one day. Nothing in the world was more beautiful to me than that first stroke of the brush on a crisp clean canvas.
I spent almost all my free time painting. What else could a girl ask for in life?
What I didn’t realize was, I would learn the answer to that sooner than I had expected. Well, it all started when I was randomly selected to take part in a research project at the local science facility. I was given the address and instructed to meet there after school.
So after class was out I hopped in a cab (which they paid for) and headed to the lab.
I had no clue what I would be expecting when I arrived at the huge glass building on the far side of town. I had always heard they did crazy experiments on people and animals. I just knew I had walked into a sick experiment that would scar me for life. Of all the students they chose me. Fabulous.
To my relief it was nothing like that at all. In fact they were conducting a social experiment. I was instructed to interview a fellow student and then report back on what I had discovered. There was a list of questions I was supposed to ask the student and then there was also a list of questions for me to answer once the interview had been conducted. Seemed easy enough.
So the following day I laid out my plan. Once the school bell rang I would rush to the front of the school, that way I would have a nice selection to choose from for my interview. Just as the bell rang the teacher asked me to stay and help her with some things in the class room. I didn’t want to be rude, so I agreed.
After I was finished, I headed down the steps of the now empty school. “Great.” I muttered under my breath.
Just when i thought I was going to have to do something drastic like interview my cousin, I saw a girl sitting on the school kids jungle gym. Relieved I jogged across the pavement until I was right underneath her.
I had seen her around campus before, and I was pretty sure her name was Rose.
“Excuse me Rose?”
“I was wondering if you could help me with a project I am working on? You see I have to interview a fellow student and-”
I didn’t even have to finish.
The interview went quite well. Rose was an incredibly friendly and outgoing person. I guess luck had smiled on me that day.
“So how long have you lived in Twizzlerbrook?”
“Since I was about a year old. I have this weird skin condition you see, and climate here seems to soothe my sensitive skin. Ya its not very pretty. I kinda turn into a freak of nature. I get all red like a Strawberry!”
“A Freak huh? You and I just may have a few things in common.”
Once the interview had concluded I worked on my questions. Rose offered to stay and hang out while I finished up.
“I promise I won’t bother you, but its kinda creepy out here when you are all alone.”
“Sure. That would be nice. Thanks!”
I finished all the questions but one. Last one on the list.
Question 20: Did you make a new friend today?
Answer: Yes I think I did…
Chapter Note: If you read this and go uhhhh Berry I totally do not get where you are going with the whole dream thing. You should probably read this short story. Its only 8 chapters, but it will bring some new light to the subject.