The Funny Feeling~
The wind outside of her bedroom howled as Calida sat on her bed, writing in her secret diary, tears streaming down her face. Whenever she felt upset or lonely this is what she could be found doing. It would always make her feel better afterwards. Her entry today, however, was so upsetting that afterwards she continued to cry, this time with her face buried in her pillow. The laughter kept ringing in Calida's ears, the voices kept taunting her, repeating those same cruel words she had heard ever since she had been adopted. Ever since her "parents", Esmerelda and Fenton had enrolled her at Bridgeton's School for the Talented. The only problem was that she was not talented at anything. That is why they called her "Calamity Calida", meaning that she was a catastrophe, a distress, a mishap and a misery.
Normally this would not upset Calida, except that today she had gone up to her crush and asked him on a date. He rejected her in the worst way possible. He laughed and started chanting "Calamity Calida". Everybody looked up to Lloyd and he knew that in chanting her name that they would all join in. With hurt feelings she had ran from the room.
"Calida, sweetheart, are you alright?" came a high-pitched, squeaky, mouse- like voice.
Wiping her eyes Calida replied, "Yes, Esmerelda."
After a low tutting noise made by Esmerelda, her voice came flooding upstairs again. "Ok then. Please come down stairs and have some dinner."
The tutting noise came again. Most people would not understand what was bothering Esmerelda but Calida did. Ever since Calida had been adopted she had never felt it correct to call Esmerelda and Fenton, Mum and Dad. At first they had tried to make her but now they had given up. It had been nine years since they adopted Calida, soon to be ten years, as Calida's sixteenth birthday was tomorrow.
It was always around her birthday that Calida thought about her family or at least tried to remember her family. She had vague memories of her mother smiling down happily at her. However there were no memories at all of her father or of any other family members. Calida tried harder but still the only image she could conjure was that beautiful smile on her mother's face. That full-toothed smile, behind two full lips, reached her eyes and crinkled up her small, delicately shaped nose. Her mother had long, impeccably straight, red hair; wide, light brown eyes; and high, well defined cheekbones with mild, unblemished, olive skin. Unfortunately, whenever Calida mentioned her mother or her family in general to Esmerelda and Fenton, they always brushed aside her questions as if they were brushing away harmless flies.
Pushing all thoughts out of her mind, Calida dragged herself off the bed and wandered into the ensuite. Looking in the mirror Calida was reminded of why Esmerelda and Fenton had told her that she was adopted and why they had never tried to pretend. The simple fact was: Calida looked nothing like them. In fact she looked a lot like her mother in all aspects excluding her eyes. She had straight, shoulder length red hair; that seemed to have an orange glow about it; just like her mother's, her mother's cheekbones, skin colour and even her mother's nose. However, she had brilliant, penetrating, green eyes. Eyes she could have gotten from another relative or by birth defect. Calida was also tall and slender, but with rather broader shoulders than the average girl.
Esmerelda had long, wavy, brown hair; that was always pulled back in a tight bun; sad-looking, brown eyes, dark olive skin, a turned up nose and was short in height. Fenton, on the other hand, was again different. He was outstandingly tall and lanky with oily black hair; styled in a crew cut; he had squinty brown eyes, pale, sickly looking skin and a thin, oiled moustache. They just couldn't hide the fact that she wasn't related, no matter how hard they could have tried.
After splashing some water on her face, Calida made her way down the stairs and into the kitchen. There she grabbed an apple and headed outside. In the sparse, green backyard, sleeping at the base of a gum tree, lay Dennis, her orange striped cat. Calida sat down next to Dennis and started stroking his soft, short fur. Hours ticked away, unnoticed by Calida, until finally she heard Fenton booming out her name. Picking Dennis up, she came trudging up to the back door.
"I think it's time I went to bed", Calida murmured in Dennis' ear. "I don't think I'm going to want to go to school tomorrow, even if it is my birthday."
Dennis snuggled against her chest comfortingly.
And with that the door banged shut behind her.
Sunlight streamed in through the crack in the blinds right onto Calida's sleeping face. Dennis stretched at the end of Calida's bed and made his way up to her head where he started purring loudly in her ear. She batted him off but there was now no chance of going back to sleep. She was awake now. Something felt weird. She felt different somehow. Did it have something to do with her birthday? Maybe something good will happen today?
She pulled back the soft purple bed spread, slipping her feet into a pair of woolly slippers on the floor. Yawning, Calida walked groggily over to the rich oak dressing table and ran her brush through her knotted red hair. Then she went and scooped Dennis off the bed and into her arms.
Calida walked out of her bedroom door, down the second floor corridor and to the wooden spiral staircase. Her winter pajama's crumpled at the knees as she took the stairs one at a time, her hand always on the rail. She felt dizzy and unstable, like she was about to fall over.
Calida had barely made it to the bottom of the stairs when Esmerelda ambushed her. Esmerelda threw her arms around Calida and almost squashed Dennis in between them. Dennis let out a cry of anguish and jumped from Calida's arms leaving ginger hairs all over her.
"Do you have to carry that cat with you everywhere?" It had been a source of discussion many times before, but Calida was stubborn about Dennis. "You'd take him to school with you if you were allowed", Esmerelda said with disgust.
"Well at least I'd have friend", Calida mumbled.
"Don't mumble, Calida. It's a bad habit you've gotten into", Esmerelda said irritably.
Calida just sighed and let Esmerelda lead her into the vast and designer decorated lounge room. The room was huge and decorated with red oak panels with thick Persian rugs in intricate designs covering the paneled floor. Even though the room looked warm and inviting, Calida hardly ever entered it. She always felt that she had to walk on eggshells and keep her hands always at her sides to avoid hitting anything. It was like being in a museum; look but whatever you do, do not touch!
Fenton sat in the lounge room, stroking his black mustache, dressed in crisp, clean clothes. His straight, rigid posture reminded Calida of an army Sergeant and Calida could almost picture the army uniform in place of the crisp, freshly pressed black suit and tie. His personality was also like that of an army Sergeant, cold and uncaring. In all the years Calida had known Fenton, he had never once warmed to her.
"You could have got dressed, couldn't you?" Fenton asked sternly.
Calida sighed again. What better way to start off her birthday than with criticism! It was going to be a long morning at this stage. Calida guessed that by the end she would be looking forward to school.