Surprise Times Two

Surprise Times Two

A Chapter by Stephanie

A wonderful gift. A startling secret.



Surprise Times Two
   After the one-sided gossip was traded, Amalia and Lorelai ate their lunches in silence. Lor almost never shifted her gaze from her best friend’s face and Amalia took to staring at the grass. Thirty minutes had never gone by so slow…
          Finally the bell rang and Amalia hopped up with Lor close behind. They had the next two classes apart, so it was easy for her to drift off knowing Lor wasn’t staring her down. The rest of the day passed fairly quickly which was exactly how she wanted it. The final bell sent the school full of girls into a screaming, chattering frenzy.
          “How was your weekend hun?”
          “She did not!”
          “No way! He asked you to Prom!?”
          “Ugh, my mother left me with the butler again so she could get some more liposuction…there shouldn’t be anything left by now.”
          “Party at my house this weekend!”
          It was everyday after school that reminded Amalia why she loathed high society girls. All they were good for was the latest gossip- this girl wore cerulean blue instead of ocean blue, that girl’s parents were fighting; the hunky boy next door had been spying… Different day, same news. Not one of those girls would last in any sort of decent friendship. If her current bestie breathed the wrong way, she was history. It made Amalia a thousand times grateful she’d found Lorelai way back in grade school. Nothing could send their friendship into a tailspin and she was damn proud of that.
          Cal was waiting front and center the second Amalia exited the shiny school doors. She ran up to Cal and fist-bumped him before getting in. The ride home was almost twenty minutes because of all the traffic. Some of Amalia’s classmates were carpooling in cars that cost more than houses and were painted to perfection.
          “Say hello, drive. Not hard…”
          Patience was a virtue she lacked. Couldn’t people just move along instead of dawdling and making it harder for everyone else? Thanks to those fantastic classmates of hers, Amalia now had the time to think about Friday’s party. Even though she hadn’t spent much time actually talking to Kris, his face was burned into her brain. Who had more perfect hair than him?
          Amalia came out of her reverie and started practicing Trig formulas instead. Once home, she stuffed the book back into her bag and walked inside- or tried to rather. Toys were scattered all over the front entry hallway. Squeaky toys, tennis balls, chew rings, bones…all the necessities that were well, necessary, if one owned a dog. Funnily enough, Amalia did not.
          “Mom!” She made her way through the wreckage into the living room. Here, there was an empty metal cage with even more toys inside.  
          “Afternoon, dear. How was school?”
          “Peachy. What’s with the toys?”
          Molly looked up from her daily soap opera. “We got a dog.”
          “Huh. When did this happen?”
          Amalia suddenly let out a short scream because something had scratched at the back of her right leg. Turning around, the mystery dog was revealed.
          Molly should have said “puppy” instead of dog. A Siberian husky puppy stood before her, tongue lolling out and tail whipping back and forth. Amalia dropped to the floor to pet her head which got her a huge lick in the face. The dog had blue eyes that just sparkled. She’d never seen anything more beautiful.
          “Girl? Boy? Name?”
          “It’s a girl. We haven’t named her yet. We thought you might like to seeing as she’s yours.”
          Her head snapped up. “Mine?”
          Molly nodded and went back to her soap. Amalia got up and ran upstairs, No-Name right in tow. Why had her parents bought her a puppy? There must be some kind of ulterior motive… For now she didn’t care. The puppy had managed to get all nestled inside Amalia’s hamper among the clothes, and she was dozing already. Amalia watched her for a second, and then changed into after school clothes; dark skinny jeans, yellow tank top and a blue sweatshirt.
          She got settled in and fooled around on her laptop for a while; downloading music, checking emails and Facebook, and searching store sites for her next outrageous rebellion purchase. 
Amalia had just begun her particularly tricky math homework when a very loud crash came from downstairs. It didn’t wake the unnamed pup, but it certainly distracted Amalia from concentrating. She forced herself to go downstairs and check things out just in case something expensive or sentimental had been the unlucky victim. Molly would flip if the lamp she’d bought in London was no longer in one piece. It was a lamp alright, but one her mother detested, since it was from her mother-in-law. In that case, it very well could have been lamp homicide that had taken place.
          She sighed and started for the kitchen to get a dustpan. A man’s laugh stopped her instantly…it was a laugh she’s never heard in her life. Through the small window right behind the sink, Amalia could see into the living room. There was her mother on the German sofa with a man. It was entirely possible Amalia had seen him before at one of the million parties or the teas or tennis games. But suddenly none of it mattered.
          He had just leaned over Molly and started kissing her. Not friendly cheek kisses either! They were full-fledged, tongue-in-mouth, groping, adultery kisses. Amalia covered her mouth and darted back up to her room, not stopping until she was in the deepest reaches of her closet. She wanted to be hidden away from everything, especially the scene that had just exploded her entire world.
          This was seedy high society at its worst and most dangerous. Molly was cheating. Amalia’s own problems were nothing now.
     A soft knocking came on the closet door. Amalia grunted as she woke up, shifting deeper into the pile of clothes she’d thrown on the floor to get comfortable on, figuring she would be in there for a while. The knocking got louder and more frequent, meaning whoever it was had become rather insistent to wake her up.
     “Amalia, it’s seven o’ clock. Dinner is ready sweetie.”
     Her mother’s voice dripped with sweetness. Did she know Amalia had seen her or was she just in an exceptionally good mood? Of course, there was a very obvious reason for her to be giddy. Amalia was disgusted. And she still hadn’t answered Mother Dearest.
     “Amalia? Why are you even in there?”
     The closet door slid open, and Amalia thanked her lucky stars it was dark outside. Any amount of light would’ve burned her eyes right out of their sockets, like a vampire or something. She sat up and steadied herself- there was the early morning vertigo, except that it was nighttime.
     “I just fell asleep in here, Mom.”
     “Well, that’s silly when you have a perfectly good bed."
     Amalia didn’t answer and realized that No Name was sleeping in a little ball right next to her. The preciousness of the image made her grin…until her mom spoke again.
     “Get out. Come on. I had Alison make pot roast.”
     “Her name is Amy.”
      Molly waved a hand, as if brushing the comment away. Tired of waiting for Amalia to get up, her mom grabbed her wrist and helped her out. A wave of dizziness hit Amalia and she swayed on the spot. Her mom gently nudged her towards the door.
     “Been walking on my own since I was two, Mom. Thanks for the help.”
     “What has gotten into you?”
     Amalia thought quickly. “There’s a virus going around school. Maybe I’m getting it.” The lie seemed to go over well enough; Molly said nothing and led the way to the kitchen, which was just another perfect example of how much she cared about her daughter, ignoring a potential illness. 
Amalia noticed the broken lamp was gone. The afternoon replayed in her head, threatening to cause her some serious guilt…and nausea. Keeping secrets was easy for her, but never like this. Walking into the dining room to keep away from Molly, Amalia was almost positive that nausea was going to overpower her the second she saw her dad sitting at the table. His hair was shining from the shower and he had his glasses on. He was the paragon of a family man. Amalia sat down immediately and put her head in her hands.
     “What’s wrong Amalia?” 
     Sam said nothing, only gave her a look of sympathy. Migraines ran on his side of the family (though Amalia had inherited zero ounces of it), so seeing his daughter in pain made him sympathetic. It didn’t occur to him that she’d never had a migraine in her life, but then he was a busy working man who couldn’t pay attention to the microscopic details of Amalia’s life. He started rapping his fingers on the table, his long day of work catching up to him.
     “Molly! What’s the wait for?”
     “Calm down dear,” she said walking into the room. “It’s right behind me.”
     Amy placed the huge plate of sliced pot roast in the middle of the table. As delicious as it smelled, Amalia was in no mood to eat. Although, she supposed, it would be a good idea to keep up appearances. She spiked the biggest piece with a fork and slapped it on her plate. How on earth was she going to eat all that?
     “How was your day, Molly?”
     “Dull. After I bought the dog and all those toys, I came back here and did nothing. I tried calling the Hanson’s to see if they would be up to some tea, but their maid told me they’re in Florence. Why haven’t we been there?”
     “Right, the dog. How do you like her Amalia?” He asked her, ignoring his wife’s otherwise unproductive day.
     “I love her. Still no name, but she is the most adorable thing I’ve ever seen. Thanks so much, Dad!”
     “You’re welcome, Bug. But thank your mother, too. The whole thing was her brilliant idea.”
     Amalia stiffened before putting on a fake smile and turning her head. “Thanks, Mom. I love her.”
     She returned to her untouched pot roast and attacked it. A million thoughts were flying through her head: How was she supposed to stay cool and collected for her dad when her mom’s…after-school activities burned a path in her brain? Amalia wished she could go back in time and never have witnessed the affair; accept the dog thinking there was no strings attached. Better yet, she would go back to when she was six years old and had a thing for catching bugs with her dad. That was the whole reason he called her “Bug”. Even then she’d started to rebel against society life, and her parents knew it. But her dad…he got it. He knew taking her away for a few hours a couple times a week would mellow Amalia out; allow her to build up a tolerance for her party-crazed, appearance-holding mother. The thought of her mom tore her back to reality where she was done with the roast and waiting to be excused for the evening.
That night, as rain pounded against the windows, Amalia wished Lorelai was there. While she doubted she would tell Lor about Molly's affair anytime soon, she still needed the comfort. Lor was the best at giving pep talks and cheering people up. She suddenly couldn't wait for school tomorrow.
Speaking of school, Amalia went back to Kris. How had he gotten inside an all-girls school? She couldn't wait for that shoe to drop. Instead of thinking about her newly complicated life, she put her headphones in and let the music carry her off to a disturbed slumber.

© 2011 Stephanie

Author's Note

This is most likely unfinished. But I couldn't wait to write down my initial ideas. Sorry about the second part...something weird happened when I copied it from Word and I can't fix it.

My Review

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Siberian huskies are the most beautiful dogs and yes parents do tend to give such nice gifts with a reason... boy seeing mom with another man, WOW... so loving the story, building up some great drama... her spunky and witty attitude gives the story a fun feel to it.

Posted 10 Years Ago

This is fantastic! I love the characters (except for her mother..) but it all feels so real and flows together perfectly....
turn the page....!

Posted 10 Years Ago

I love this, especially the list of things that you do
This is wonderful. I can't wait to read more.

Posted 10 Years Ago

this was once again really good. I cant wait to read what happens next

Posted 10 Years Ago

Twist! Still loving it! keep up the great work!!

Posted 10 Years Ago

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Hope you don't mind, but I'm writing one review for all three chapters.

First off, I loved reading this. It's constantly witty, but in a brilliantly subtle way. And that is extremely hard to pull off. Believe me, I've given up to trying to be subtle. You however, have got it down. The tone is serious, but every so often - almost periodically you get a hint of humour, in the way of an opinion or a description.

It feels human, things like the references to films and music give it that flavour without standing out too much. Again, subtle.

Honestly, it was a joy to read. Usually I stay away from things written by 17 year old girls. They're genrally quite... suicidal.

Ahem. This however, is brilliant. Gilmore worthy, even.

One thing I would say is that the font size hurts my eyes slightly. :P

Anyway, I genuienly enjoyed reading this.

- Owl

Posted 10 Years Ago

loved it! it has a new interesting twist! what is going to happen with the cheating mother...and what is the dog going to be named?? cannt wait! ahah
but seriously.. its great.. you have a nag for story writting! keep it up! i cant wait to read the next one! (seriously have me hooked ) :)

Posted 10 Years Ago

Ahh...see i was smart to wait to to give a review cause i knew you were going to add more to this chapter which really added to the original end...I also applaud you for add more depth to amalia's daily life and some of her inside jokes like her nickname and her daily routine...Might i suggest naming the cute puppy ANDI lol Loved it

Posted 10 Years Ago

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Your ideas are Fantastic! I like this a lot. I usually don't read stories, but this one really captivates! You have a Talent that is destined to spread it's wings and fly! Too many S & V to number for this one! : >)

Posted 10 Years Ago

wow, this is really good. i love it! great job! =)

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 10 Years Ago

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11 Reviews
Added on July 25, 2009
Last Updated on July 30, 2011
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Gilroy, CA

I'm Stephanie, 27. Still don't know what I want to be when I grow up, even though I have a degree. Getting through some serious writer's block from the past 5+ years. Excited to be back! more..

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