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Kayla spends more time hanging with Brittany’s friends and vowed to make the Netball squad
The day managed to pass quickly, all 6 friends didn’t make it to lunch, Zachary had homework to finish, Joshua had Cricket tryouts to prepare for and Victoria was making sure the conference room wasn’t booked for the after school meeting on Tuesday afternoon.
Brittany managed to persuade Brandon and Kayla to come.

Brittany: I see we are low on numbers but never mind it will have to do.
Brandon: We could have invited Christopher.
Kayla: Isn’t he popular enough, he’s probably got a lunch schedule booked for the next 2 weeks or maybe even longer.
Brittany: We don’t want anyone as popular as me at our table, even if he’s captain of the Soccer team, what sort of an excuse does that give him.
Brandon: Don’t you feel Kayla’s a threat?
Brittany: She is adorable and she’ll be snapped up fast but I’m glad I did it because I really feel I helped her and even if she has a better boyfriend I wouldn’t let anything come between us.
Brandon: That makes quite a lot of sense.
Brittany: She’s still got to charm the Netball squad and there more of a determined group than the Gymnastics group.
Kayla: I’ll try my hardest and I always promised that I wouldn’t let you down.
Brittany: I respect that but there are some ruthless people who are already jealous of your new persona and I think they’ll try anything to stop you becoming a princess and demean your authority, even worse they could taunt you into becoming a tomboy again.
Kayla: In this civilisation, I never realised what big part I hold in this school.
Brittany: Knowing you couldn’t cope with the stress and strain of your new identity I had a plan built out for you, I’d avoid Hockey because they’re all jealous of you and it’s not even a glamorous sport, it’s full of ugly wannabes who can’t get into my sports so you can understand where they are coming from.
Kayla: I guess so but no-one in this school should be against me, I am happy to be 1 of the prettiest 11th graders around but I don’t mind a bit of competition so I am going to march up to them and tell them they can’t believe all the clich├ęs they have heard.
Brandon: I am still wondering how will find them.
Kayla: I do not know but we do our utmost best because if they do have a problem with the fact I’m pretty then they better get use to it because I am never turning back into my old ways what ever the Hockey team says.
Brittany: How would people like to eat now?
Kayla: Yes
Brandon: I’ll agree with that.
Brittany: We’re having Pizza, I was wondering what toppings you’d like?
Brandon: I’ll be fine with Ham and Pineapple.
Kayla: I don’t want to sound too fussy but would it be OK to have Pepperoni with courgette, rocket and extra cheese?
Brittany: Of course it would, having money means you can always have what you want, even though I’d like to keep with tradition and just have spinach and fried egg.

Lunch came within 15 minutes and the Pizzas came from the kitchen stone baked and smelling nice, lunch was enjoyed severely but Kayla was disappointed not to have time to visit the Hockey team but Brandon realised this was a war they could win some other time.
At the end of lunch it was afternoon lessons before the daunting prospect of Kayla trying to fit in at Netball after school.

Kayla arrived at the sport hall after school, she was now ready to enter the world of polo shirts, pleated skirts, knee length socks and plimsolls.
She was ready to push her confidence to make the Netball team however hard that made things.
Kayla arrived dressed as before, hoping that she’d make the team and be given an outfit by Brittany meaning she’d made the cut.
Brittany came to meet her.

Brittany: Kayla, this will be the hardest group to impress so try your hardest and if you make the team I can give you a Netball outfit.
Kayla: Then what are we waiting for, I’m standing at the door so very nervous to take 1 more step.
Brittany: It’s OK, I’ll guide you through everything.
Kayla: Then let’s do this.

Kayla walked thorough the door and saw a group of very smartly dressed girls and Kayla felt she couldn’t keep up with them.

Brittany: Hello I presume you all know Kayla but if you don’t, you’ve probably seen her around but don’t recognise her at the moment.
She used to be a skateboarding tomboy but now I’ve turned her into a princess in the making and you may decide that she’s a fake but isn’t.
She has been through a lot last week and I had to introduce her all my other groups, she also kissed my cousin after knowing him for only a few hours and I know it’s been hard for her and she has made some very quick decisions but I want you to accept her for the new person she has become and I am hoping all the hard work I did on her will give her the confidence to make the Netball team.

Everyone decided to stop the silence and talk amongst themselves as if hierarchy couldn’t think of anything else to say.
Che-ling was vice captain of the Netball team and decided to step in.

Che-ling: I have to say that I am very happy to welcome Kayla to our training, I was shy when I arrived but that was 4 years ago and I held it together so she will adjust in time.
Kayla: I am happy to accept that it won’t be easy but I’ll give it my all to make the team.
Brittany: Being accepted is very important, we better get some practise in so everyone shoot some baskets and Kayla stick with me for a bit.

The group continued to follow instructions and Brittany and Kayla went to the side to talk.

Brittany: Kayla it’s quite easy to start, you stand in front of the basket and aim the ball at the wall hoping it will fall through the net so are we ready to begin?
Kayla: Yes, for an exercise it’s worth a go.
Brittany: It will take some practise but you’ll be scoring in no time, skill is important and if you work out a method then you’ll be a pro in no time at all so go have fun and give it your all.
Kayla: That sounded like a reference from Kung Fu Panda but I am sure it can be used in any situation.

Kayla stood at the basket, picked up a ball and lunged it at the basket and it hit the wall.

Che-ling: Good 1st attempt and I know you will improve because to tell you the truth my 1st shot was much worse.
Kayla: Thank-you that makes it all better.

Kayla, Che-ling and the rest of the girls practised shooting baskets, Kayla didn’t score 1 but it was her 1st day in the club and she’d never progress over night although she would over time.

Kayla: Excuse me, have you seen Brandon?
Brittany: Yes, I told him to sit in the stand so he could watch, can you see him?
Kayla: Yes I can, I get so distracted so I didn’t look up there, he might put me off.

Brandon waved from the stands, Kayla waved back.

Brittany: That is nice of him showing up to support you like this.
Kayla: He’s my best friend and that is the sort of thing he always does and we’ll be best friends forever because of it.

Brittany went back to join her group and upon her arrival Kayla, Che-ling and the others sat on the ground.

Brittany: I have to admit that I am impressed but some of you are out of practise since before Christmas.
Never mind because we’ll be back to brilliance before you know it, let us move on to dribbling, we bounce the ball on the ground and round the cones, pass the ball to the player behind you, they will complete the circuit and so on until everyone has had a go, then we will move on to something else.

Off everyone went dribbling the ball, Kayla knew how to do this so there was no excuses for Brittany to hold her back.
After that Brittany called them all to sit down again

Brittany: I was going to ask you to throw balls at people but we are not playing dodge ball and we don’t want to brake a nail.
Che-ling: We’re not all conscious about our looks.
Brittany: I have a better idea, let’s form a circle except for 1 person who stands in the middle and throws the ball to a person and shouts their name so the person knows the ball is coming to them.
They throw it back to the person in the middle and shout their name and so, this exercise should help Kayla learn all your names and I think I have time to join in with this activity.

Brittany was as good as her word and tried very hard, the captain was more the sort to boss people around then join in.
A sense of pride ran through the group and afterwards they sat down.

Brittany: I want you to split into 2 equal groups, 1 group put on green bibs, the other group put on yellow bibs, then we can pit the 2 groups against each other.
This way we can see which members are the best, I’ll be looking for defensive tactics, the ability to score and most importantly how well you work together.
Kayla, I’d recommend watching this lot to see how skilful they are and I am sure Brandon will be grateful of the company in the stands.

Kayla went to the stands to join Brandon, they were both ready for what was going to be a real battle of a match and a real chance to prove who should make the cut and get put in the official team.

Brittany blew the whistle and the action commenced.
The teams were very equal and it was going to be a tough decision for her as to which players would make the team and which ones would just be subs.
The difficult choice was where Kayla would fit in but it would all come together when the right formation was in place.

The game progressed well and after 10 minutes they swapped sides for another 10 minutes of play.
When the whistle blew for the end there was only mere points separating both teams.
Brittany sat them all down again.

Brittany: You were all fantastic and I’ll have difficulty picking a final 7 for the start of season but I do have until a week on Thursday until our 1st game kicks off.
If you impress me you stand a good chance of succeeding and whether Kayla makes the team is just a risk I’ll have to consider.
Thank-you for coming and we’ll meet again next Monday, goodbye.

Brittany led the class out of the sport hall and Che-ling feared for her place as a vice captain wasn’t really needed for such a small team.
Brandon, Brittany and Kayla headed to the car park.

Kayla: I thought you’d have changed back into your other outfit.
Brittany: Changing back and forth is complicated, I stay in my after school kit and collect my daytime outfit from my lockers as I have to pass it on the way to the car park and then I can take it home.
Kayla: Did Brandon enjoy watching me?
Brandon: Yes but you have a long way to go.
Kayla: Everyone is saying that, it’s like they feel I’ll be a failure or something.
Brittany: It’s not that, if you get picked over someone else they feel like I am spreading favouritism.
Kayla: That would never happen.
Brittany: It might happen because I’ll make sacrifices to my team and we’ll still do well.
Kayla: Who is our 1st game against?
Brittany: It’s against our local rivals Canberra High School.
Kayla: Then I must play, I need to get revenge for the way their captain dumped your cousin.
Brittany: I’ll do my besy bust there is so much talent fighting for a place.
Brandon: We all make sacrifices and that is sacrifice no. 1, playing an unknown to surprise the competition.
Brittany: Good tactics; I knew sitting in the stand would be good for you.
Brandon: I think your vice captain feels a little left out, you surely need her.
Brittany: Yes I do but a vice captain is not essential for a team, the rules say they are optional so I do not know whether she will be used permanently.
Kayla: Change is bad, you had a successful season last year so not much need altering.
Brittany: I agree, I will do minor alterations to the group and then we can burn down the court and set ourselves to great victories.
Kayla: Brandon, is there anything we can help you with?
Brandon: I always need help when I am on the Soccer pitch.
Kayla: Just say when you need us and we’ll be there, when abouts is this?
Brandon: Saturday evenings.
Brittany: That sounds like something we can work with.
Brandon: Then you’ll be there for me?
Brittany: Of course we will, after all we do get 6 hours free after show jumping practise.
Kayla: And all together the schedule is slowly coming together.
Brittany: We have arrived at the main part of school now, I’ll stop at my locker and pick up my cowgirl outfit.
Kayla: As it was on the way, that sounded like an excellent idea.
Brandon: And then we can press on home and prepare ourselves for another day at school tomorrow.
Kayla: That is not out of the ordinary, we have something a lot more important to do tomorrow in planning the after school activities which won’t be easy since someone invited Roxie along.
Brittany: I wanted to give her some confidence by helping decide an activity she would like to start and change her from a frail and shy individual.
Brandon: I am sure she is capable of doing what is needed and everything will go fine.
Brittany: I heard her and Dylan went to the aquarium and she fed Fish to the Dolphins, why would she risk exposing her secret like that?
Kayla: I do not know, it does sound like an insane thing to do but maybe she’s just trying to show off.
Dylan: Or maybe it’s part of her plan to impress Dylan, after all she is the new girl at school and she has to vie for attention to fit in.
Brittany: I have my outfit so lets leave before the place gets deserted.
I’ll bring you a new outfit tomorrow unless you’d rather come to mine and pick it up.
Kayla: That’s a great idea, me and Brandon will come to yours before school so I can pick up a new outfit.
We’ll get Brandon’s dad to pick us up earlier and drops us at your place.
Brittany: Is 07:30am an OK time to arrive?
Kayla: It maybe a push but we’ll do our best.
Brandon: See you later, goodbye.
Brittany: Bye.
Kayla: Bye.

And with that Brittany left Kayla and Brandon.
Brittany went to catch the limo whilst Kayla and Brandon went to meet Brandon’s father to be driven home.
Roxie had gone home as she has to face her father about her home sickness and much more.
He wasn’t home so she talked to her mum.

Mrs Pinewood: How was school?
Roxie: It was great, Brittany invited me to join the after school committee.
Mrs Pinewood: That’s excellent, I knew you’d do well.
Roxie: I think it was a ploy because she insulted me.
Mrs Pinewood: What has she been saying?
Roxie: It’s not what she said, it’s what she found out.
Mrs Pinewood: And what was that?
Roxie: I don’t know how she did it but somehow she found out I have a water allergy.
Mrs Pinewood: This could be very bad indeed.
Roxie: To make matters worse when I asked her to pick me a sport, she suggested swimming.
Mrs Pinewood: That girl is self centred to come up with a dishonest way of making fun of you.
Roxie: That’s the way she is with everyone so she wasn’t do it deliberately.
Mrs Pinewood: She is the most popular girl in school meaning no one would cross her if they had a reason to complain but trust me Roxie, nobody would stop me.
Roxie: That is very good of you to stand up to the richest student at Waterfall Academy, that surely must take some bravery.
Mrs Pinewood: Indeed it does and I have practise, is she really that rich?
Roxie: Yes, her dad owns a hairdressing franchise all over Australia meaning she is worth millions.
Mrs Pinewood: I had no idea.
Roxie: I am sure if you met her, you could tell she was rich from a mile away.
Mrs Pinewood: What activity would you suggest to the group?
Roxie: I was considering Lacrosse.
Mrs Pinewood: Interesting choice, I know the didn’t do it in Queensland but Canberra is ready for something out of the ordinary.
Roxie: Even though I told Dylan I wasn’t the biggest fan of chequered clothes I would if It was necessary, I was doing it to try and stop him for over-exaggerating on traditional out of date Australian styles.
Mrs Pinewood: Of course you were right to put tell him he was wrong, you’re school made a wise choice in defying government money and totally abolishing the dress code and giving more freedom to his students over what they wear.
Roxie: And that is why Dad chose to send to me there instead of Canberra High.
Mrs Pinewood: Precisely, your new school has such high standards and we really couldn’t say no to it.
Roxie: And we hope that would never change, Brittany’s head prefect in grade 11 and she’d never vote for any disastrous dress code changes to be made.
Mrs Pinewood: If they really had to make changes, they’d do away with those temperamental water fountains, they could cause you some harm.
Roxie: Only if it erupted, there is a 1 in a 100 chance of that, I could get water from other places if you feel it is safer, they do have vending machine that stock sparkling and still.
Mrs Pinewood: Thank heavens for that, you do know you can prevent water from touching you, you just have to use your special powers of water bending.
Roxie: I had no idea I was capable of doing that, you sprung that 1 on me.
Mrs Pinewood: You cross your fingers over 1 another and the water will follows in the direction in which your hand is going so whether your hand is going left or right, up or down, the water will follow your hand and prevent you from harm.
Roxie: Should I practise just to know what I am doing in case of emergency?
Mrs Pinewood: No way, messing with your powers could be more fatal than no using them, if you are in danger using them will save the day.
Roxie: And what about me telling Dad.
Mrs Pinewood: When you feel you are ready to do that I have no problems in you telling him, he has to know sometime.
Roxie: I don’t want to wait forever so I’ll tell him tonight.
Mrs Pinewood: Please have time to think it over, I don’t want you to regret doing it by rushing into things.
Roxie: Now is the time because I’ve kept it from Dylan and it’s time people knew the truth and found out the easy way other than if I get hurt and they find out by accident.
Mrs Pinewood: OK go for it, you’re 12 and I feel you have been through big changes in moving here so if you want to tell your father, then I guess there is no stopping you.
Roxie: I don’t want to die and him not to know the reason behind it.
Mrs Pinewood: When you put it like that I guess he must know but go slowly with him, he has pressures at work and this could be a lot for him to take in.
Roxie: He really has to understand that there is more to life than work, he has a daughter who’s life is in danger.
Mrs Pinewood: I have to admit that the move has affected us all but I feel your home sickness will ware out over time, as soon as you fit in better then Canberra will feel as much a home to you as Queensland ever did.
Roxie: And that must be another reason why she invited me to join the final after school planning meeting, she has a plan to make me more sociable.
Mrs Pinewood: Of course why didn’t I guess that before, she helped Kayla and she wants to help you.
Roxie: I was too busy thinking of my own problems that I only just realised what she was thinking, I am hurting the people I care about the most but that is going to change soon than we can imagine.
Mrs Pinewood: It’s a good job you said that because your father will be home soon and then you can let out your deepest fears and he will understand you better.
Roxie: And still until he is back, it will be a very hard and tenuous hour so I better go and do some homework and it’ll take my mind off things.

Roxie headed to her room to work on her homework.
Very soon she was going to tell her Dad her deepest darkest secret but she still admitted that it was going to be equally complicated to tell her best friend Dylan.
When Mr Pinewood returned his wife let Roxie know.
She came down the stairs and realised there was no turning back now, she went to talk to him in the lounge after what easier a time was there then after he had poured a glass of brandy.

Mr Pinewood: Hello Roxie, how was school?
Roxie: Fantastic, the most popular girl in school needs my help in picking new after school activities.
Mr Pinewood: And what are you going to suggest?
Roxie: Lacrosse.
Mr Pinewood: Like you’d ever wear a kilt.
Roxie: I know the dress code, all school sports have them.
Mr Pinewood: All I was saying was that it isn’t the sort of thing you’d be seen wearing.
Roxie: We all have to make sacrifices to fit in, it isn’t easy being the new girl at Waterfall Academy.
Mr Pinewood: I do understand that things are difficult for you but you will adjust.
Roxie: I’m still homesick.
Mr Pinewood: I know you are, how about at half term we take a trip up to Queensland.
Roxie: That would be great, you certainly know how to cheer me up.
Mr Pinewood: And they say kids are harder to please than adults.
Roxie: How come?
Mr Pinewood: Well adults drink to forget whilst children have much more stronger memories that are impossible to forget.
Roxie: And still we understand very little.
Mr Pinewood: You’re a bright girl and you can fit in wherever you are unlike gypsies.
Roxie: I agree with that, I am here to make a point in Canberra and I will be well known at school, it will just take time.
Mr Pinewood: Of course it will but it takes some patience which I know is very hard to have when you’re a hyperactive preteen.
Roxie: And still the fellow students seem determined to find out everything about you, every little detail, if they don’t know it they won’t be friends with you.
Mr Pinewood: Why do you think this is happening?
Roxie: I am unsure but the most popular girl at school found out about my water allergy and I am sure she’ll hold it against me.
Mr Pinewood: I assume that could be fatal.
Roxie: Yes I think it could be because everyone looks up to her and if she tells the teachers they’ll consider me as having a mental disability.
Mr Pinewood: I know she’s in to getting her own way but I doubt she’ll sink to that much of a low.
Roxie: She does have a lot on her plate to worry about turning me in.
Mr Pinewood: I know her type and she’ll joke about it but don’t listen, she’ll have something she doesn’t want you to find out, she’s not going to threaten to tell anyone, she just likes to have an intense knowledge of her fellow students.
Roxie: Who told you that?
Mr Pinewood: Why Dylan of course.
Roxie: I don’t know why he’d say that, he hasn’t found out about my power over water yet.
Mr Pinewood: What does that mean?
Roxie: I can control water, my Mum say it is a power I have.
Mr Pinewood: I never knew that but there’s still so much I don’t understand about my wife and you being low on oxygen, it must have some rather extreme side effects that I would never make sense of.
Roxie: I have more powers but I am unaware of my true strength.
Mr Pinewood: You still have time to learn all about your powers.
Roxie: What about me being low on oxygen, you know my crystal holds my elixir and that stops me dying.
Mr Pinewood: I stand to protect you from any fatal diseases coming to you.
Roxie: I know I have a water allergy and it’s more trouble than it’s worth.
Mr Pinewood: We are still searching for a cure.
Roxie: We’ve tried for too long, I’m allergic to water but if it touches my skin I more than just swell up.
Mr Pinewood: This sounds like very risky information, are you sure you don’t want to go the hospital for tests.
Roxie: No, that is not a problem but if I get water on me, the problems are so big my life couldn’t get any worse.
Mr Pinewood: I’m very concerned right now but anything that happens I will have to understand the conclusion.
Roxie: The thing I have been trying to tell you is that if water touches my skin, I transform so badly that I could be at risk if anyone finds out because if water touches my skin I turn into a mermaid and I really do not know how people would react or how I can prevent this from happening.

A silence broke through the house before Mr Pinewood got up and picked up his brandy having not had time to touch it, then he walked very slowly and silently to his study.
© Copyright 2011 Daniel Staley-Myers (staleydm01 at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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