Choices, part 4: Friends

Posted: August 6, 2013 by writingsprint in Choices, Fantasy, Science fiction
Tags: , , , , , ,

ballet stretchThe events calendar in the studio read, “Today: Final Cuts for the Recital.” Below that was tacked a schedule of auditions, from the backup, through the artists, soloists and principals. Jeana and a girl named Andri were the principals competing for the lead. Andri was Miss Graha’s favorite. In spite of that, she and Jeana were good friends.

Jeana arrived early, as she always did. She usually took a place on the rail and stretched while going over the recital in her head.

Andri was here early, too, as she always was. Usually they’d sit together and get ready, but they hadn’t ever since auditions had begun. Miss Graha discouraged it. She said they were rivals and should act like it.

Jeana sat next to Andri where she used to. She smiled. “Hey.”

“Hi, J,” Andri said.

“Big day.”

“Yup.”

Andri was usually the talkative one. Today she was Miss Monosyllable. This was weird. Jeana said, “Uh… look, I just wanted to say good luck today. Kick ass.”

Andri looked down. “Yeah.”

Real weird. Jeana gathered up her things to go.

“I hate the way she treats you. It’s not fair,” Andri blurted. Jeana was about to thank her, when she went on, “Everyone thinks I’m her pet. I’m a good dancer.”

“You’re a great dancer!”

“As good as you?”

“I…” Well, yes. Jeana could feel how upset Andri was. They were friends. Jeana lied through her teeth. “Better.”

“You’re just saying that.”

“What’s up with you?”

“Why did you come over here, anyway?”

Jeana started to get angry. She caught a rush of the Dark Side. She’d wanted to feel something good here before Miss Graha walked in and turned everything to fangs and daggers, but Andri wasn’t helping.

To wish you luck, loser. Because I’m better than you. No matter how well you do you can’t beat me today, and everyone knows it.

Jeana shook her head. “Forget I did. ‘Merde,’” Jeana said. Dancer slang for ‘good luck.’

“Right.”

She turned to walk back to the rail. Miss Graha stood in the doorway. She’d seen everything. They shared a stare. Jeana blinked first but only because she had better things to do, like stretch.

Miss Graha walked over to Andri. Jeana watched them whisper. Miss Graha made forceful gestures. Points. Fists. Be strong. Don’t let her mess with your head. Jeana felt flickers of the Dark Side. Anger. Scorn. Passion. She wondered what she was saying.

Andri noticed her looking. Jeana gave her a small smile. She winked. Jeana lifted her foot onto the rail and began dancing in her mind.

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