“So who is gonna go with me to the reunion tomorrow?”
Mom had burst in the room quickly, so none of us had time to escape. I was on the couch at the time, minding my own business, watching Koda and Mik beat each other up in Smash Berry Brawl, and I tried not to make eye contact, but I could feel her eyes burning a hole into the side of my face.
Koda and Mik pretended like they never heard the question, as they continued to pummel each others characters off into oblivion.
“Dude! Thats not fair!”
“Yes it is! I got you fair and square!”
Sunny had also been on the couch, but just like the boys, he pretended that he missed the whole question. He made a small gesture to his phone, and then went back to talking to his girlfriend.
“What? No…My mom was asking something I guess. Now what were you saying?”
Butterscotch was at work, so this only left me. I already knew dad could not go because he worked the mornings, so I pretty much already knew I was going to be the one dragged along. She had kinda mentioned the thing a few days before, but it went in one ear and out the other.
“Well..I guess if I have to go by myself, I will.”
Awww man, she had to go and pull the old guilt trip, I don’t normally do guilt, but it was hard for me to say no to her. Finally after a long deliberation, I caved.
*Sigh* “Ok mom, I’ll go with you.”
“Oh thank you sweety! I really appreciate it. You can bring your camera, the venue is stunning, you will have plenty of nice things to photograph.”
I nodded and faked a smile, as she headed back up the stairs, just as she was out of sight, I heard Sunny from behind me.
So the next morning, we made our way to the Fairy Floss memorial park. Mom was greeted almost immediately by some lady who was supposed to be a cousin of some sort. Freeshiaberry and mom started chatting, and left me to stand there looking incredibly awkward. Since it seemed like I was not going to get an introduction anytime soon, I started to survey the park, and mom was definitely right, the place was a photographers dream come true.
I had learned on the ride over, that the park was special to our family. She said technically I had been there before. Since her and dad were married there and she was pregnant with me and Butterscotch at the time. I had to admit it was a pretty cool place. Right near the back I noticed an old swing, so I pulled out my camera and snapped a couple shots.
After getting a couple shots, a girl about my age and who looked a lot like Freesiaberry, ran up beside me and grabbed my arm.
“Oh good! Just the guy I wanted to see!”
“Yes you! Now come with me silly.”
“Where are we going?”
“Just follow me!”
The girl started walking a little away from the party and over to a big tree. As we got closer, I could see another girl sitting in the shade.
“Rosé take a picture with me!” I got us a really good photographer here. He is gonna take it for us.”
“Awww Acie! Please no photos, you know I hate taking pictures.”
“But I brought… uhhh whats your name?”
“I brought Pineapple all the way over here just for us.”
“Pweety Pweese with sugar apples on top?”
I felt kinda bad for Rosé, the scene playing out in front of me, looked eerily like the one me and mom had the night before. She really, really, really did not want to take a picture, but Acie really, really, really had her heart set on it. Finally Rosé gave up.
“Ok fine! but just one.” She then turned her attention to me. “But if I look bad, I am coming after you. Got it?”
The lighting was a little dark under the tree, but that is where they said wanted to take it, so I lined up the shot and after making sure it was perfect (I did not want angry cousins after me). I got a pretty nice shot. I showed them in the little preview window and thankfully they liked it.
“Oh Pineapple its perfect thank you!”
“Ya… you did good. Thanks.”
I was just starting to go back to the party, when both girls took a seat under the big tree. “Come hang with us. We are much more entertaining then those old people over there.” Acie said as she patted the grass to her right. I had nothing better to do, and both girls seemed pretty cool, so I set my camera down and took a seat next to it. “Alright.”
“I’m Acaiberry by the way, but everyone calls me Acie. Actually I prefer Acie.”
“Ya she kinda flips when people call her by her full name.” Rosé chimed in.
“Ya pretty much.”
“And my name is Rosé. You said your name was Pineapple right?”
“Pineapple Pinot Noir?”
“Huh? No Pineapple Chiffon.”
“OMB! Your one of them!”
“One of them?” I had no idea what she was talking about. They both started to giggle and I was only feeling more lost.
“You mean you don’t know the story?”
“Well you se-”
“Let me tell it Rosé.”
“Ok, so according to the story, our great great great grandfather had an affair, and the baby is your great great grandmother! But you see, there is more to this story, Pinot Noir’s are magic.”
“Yup some can walk through dreams!”
“What? No way. That sounds like a load of berries.”
‘Its true! I heard that your mom is one to! You should ask her about it some time. You might be in for a surprise.”
While I was trying to wrap my head around the idea of my mom being “magic” Rosé squealed. “I just had the best idea! Pineapple should go with us to the Coconut hut tonight!”
“Yes! He should!”
“The coconut hut, SSH is having a party there tonight, but anyone under the age of 18 can go! You should come!”
“Uhhh I guess, but I have no idea how I would get there.”
“Oh leave that to me! I can pick you up.”
“Yup Acie has been driving for like two years now.”
“Almost three. I graduate really soon remember!”
“Ok sounds fun.”
Once the party was over, I said goodbye to the girls and Acie and I exchanged numbers.
“I will call you about 5 ok?”
“Hey Pineapple its Acie. We will be by in about an hour. Be ready!”
“We will be.”
“Ya my brother Butterscotch is coming. Hope thats ok.”
“Totally! See you guys in a little while!”
As I went to hang up the phone, I could hear Acie talking to Rosé.
“Ya I think his brother is coming.”
“I got it!”
Butterscotch and I both headed for the door, but before we could get to it, mom jumped in our way.
“Hang on a sec boys. You be careful out there. There have been a lot of strange disappearances as of late. If you see any thing suspicious, do stick around to investigate.”
“Mom would you relax. Pineapple and I will be just fine. We are like 13 years older than that Lumps girl was, I think we can take care of ourselves.”
Poor mom was totally paranoid, ever since she read about the abduction of Sugar Lumps in the paper, but I agreed with Butterscotch on this one, we were gonna be fine.
“Ok, just please be safe.”
Finally mom stepped aside and we greeted Acie and Rosé at the door. We all jumped in her car and made the drive to Sugar Valley.
“Either of you ever been to Sugar Valley before?” Acie inquired as she turned down the music.
When we got to the hut, it was just that. A tiny hut. Nothing around, but you could hear the bumping of deep base.
“So this is it?”
“Yup! But the party is downstairs.”
Acie and Rosé headed for the hut, when we got inside we found a staircase that lead under ground. As we headed down the stairs the bumping bass was getting louder and louder.
“Welcome to the Hut Boys.”
The place was hoppin. Gorgeous girls everywhere.
“Wow you guys sure grow’em pretty in Sugar Valley.”
“Haha! You are so funny!”
The girls immediately dragged us out to the dance floor to start dancing. Butterscotch was like a duck to water, he already had girls flocking to him. One in particular though really caught his eye. She gave him a little wink and soon they were dancing closer and closer.
“Looks like your bro found a friend!” Rosé called out, trying to be louder than the music.
“Ya I think so too!”
But it was someone off of the dance floor who caught my eye. She was the most beautiful girl i had ever seen; off in the very back corner reading. Reading! At a night club. How completely out of place. Suddenly I was compelled to find out why. I excused myself from the dance floor and headed over to her.
“Is this seat taken?”
“Its a free country.” She replied without ever looking up from her book.
“So I was just wondering what a pretty girl like you is doing over in the corner reading?”
“Friend dragged me here.”
“Oh I see.”
Why aren’t you dancing?”
“Don’t want to…”
With no reply, I started to bop my head to the music. “You know you might like it if you went out there. Dancing is fun.” I had no idea where the brave streak was coming from, but I decided to go with it. “Maybe you could dance with me?”
That must have been the wrong thing to say, because she closed her book and got up from the table.
“I gotta go.”
Again crazy instincts took over, and as she walked away, I got up and chased after her. I caught her in the main lobby and grabbed her hand. Heat rushed up my arm as I did so. Whoa I thought to myself. Unfortunately she did not enjoy the encounter as much.
“You’re cute and all, but you just need to walk away. You don’t want to get involved with me.”
“How do you know that? Because I think i do. Would you at least tell me your name?”
“I need to go bye!”
With that, she was up the stairs and out of my life.
“What the heck just happened?!”
When I finally accepted she was not coming back down the stairs, I slunk back inside. Only to be more depressed when i saw my brother.
It seemed things were going a lot more smoothly for him and his little dance floor vixen. I couldn’t contain it any more and I irritatingly rolled my eyes.
The two girls at the bar were watching me the whole time. In fact I did not even realize at first that they were talking to me.
“Boy! Boy at the door!”
“Yes! I said I wouldn’t take it to personally. She is weird like that. Come here.”
Hoping to get a little more information on the mystery girl, I went a little closer.
“Do you know her?”
“Ya. Thats Honey Mint Bitters.”
“She’s really sweet, but super closed off. You just can’t get close to her. Believe me I’ve tried.”
“Are you the friend that brought her here?”
“Ya. I was hoping to loosen her up, you can see how well it worked.”
“I want to see her again.”
“No use buddy. She will just keep running off like she did tonight.”
I knew Georgia was probably right, but I did not care. I had a new mission. Find Honey Mint Bitters.