Sabrina

Our continuation of #girlstories…

The epiphany rang.

There was an evil sinister coming to Elevententeen.

Do you have plans yet_.png

Sabrina sat up from her seat and left her lunch in the mist. She was mentally picturing her fuzzy, white sweater getting soaked from the rain and it made her livid. She was too embarrassed to adjust, people were observing. She trudged through, carrying a green umbrella.

Carrying books in a used plastic bag, she walked to her class. Virtuoso would be there. Her heart skipped a beat knowing that he would test her classically trained ear. He didn’t know she lost the ability. For this exam, she would pretend; she could not hear a thing.

Only black. Sabrina quickly glanced at her feet to see where she was, her red rain boots covered in dew drops. Then, she coughed and tiny gray particles with lavender pieces came shooting out of her mouth. She coughed again and the door opened.

She couldn’t hold onto her books anymore. They dropped down the silver lining. Her arms struggled to reach for something, anything to stop her from slipping. There were branches sticking out on each side of her, then suddenly she remembered.

She was Alice and Sabrina was the nightmare.

10 years ago.

She didn’t want to see it, she squeezed her eyes shut to ignore what was going to happen next. No, no, no! She cried, just leave me alone! Don’t let this happen, loyal judge, I will bring you the falcon! But whomever she was speaking to didn’t care. She looked down and could see her legs changing into wide tree trunks, covered with green frost and violet branches. She looked at her hands and they too were made of wood. The apple from her lunch pack floated in a thick orange residue, and she reached for it, but it just turned into mush with a face, laughing. Oh shit, this is it. The sounds around her went bleep.

Finally, kerplunk.

Sabrina landed on soft ground. It was ridiculous that a tree could wear a blue dress. Still, she patted down her pinafore and retied a green bow. Judge? She searched. Her crispy hands aimed for her head. She ducked down as she knew she wouldn’t be able to prune her braids. The ground became solid with tiny, little versions of signs propping up, one by one, all over the place. Everywhere was now everything.

She wore a black hat and had red-rimmed eyeglasses.

alice. (2)

She wore a purple jacket with dirt under her nail beds.

judge.

It was over.

They played a game to determine their next meal. They didn’t want to eat. They wanted to get out of here. A sinister laugh bellowed from the fog’s bounds and they knew Judge Judy was prepared. Prepared to assign Sabrina with her next task. Prepared to evaluate the worth of Alice’s size, since she was just going to be used at the tribune. And throughout the entire evaluation, neither girl could sit still.

What would become of Sabrina’s jacket?

 

 

10 – The Final End

So, who do we got here? Filburt quipped – Stan’s over there. Shady from S and L pronounced, I seen Cherry standing to the right with her sister. So, who else is missing? Um, I think Seventeen and Each Other were caught making out in their cache car. Cache car? Yeah. Like you know. Invisible transportation to Life Space. And who’s leaving Life Space right now? A Tree. And I saw A Day go to. Okay, well…we are close to arranging the final tribune.

We were that close.

“He came in and interrupted me!”

“Ya so. Why didn’t you just tell him to leave?”

Daisy was walking down the sidewalk. Again. It was raining. The weather never changed here. It was consistently blue-gray and purple. Wet and bleak. The sunshine rays were hidden by Indigo; the pupils of Elevententeen did not deserve Paradise Colours.

We were that.

“Filburt, can you please pass me my tea?”

“Ya sure. Here you go, do you have enough cream?”

Daisy’s milk was a nice colour of baby lime chartreuse. She didn’t even want to stir it, because then it would change into something orange and forceful. She was deciding on a Dream for the day, to carry with her in the front pocket of her Levi’s. She had another note in there from Baby Bear, who was said to be related to Seventeen and Other of Each Other. The wall at the Nike outlet now included various options for Dreams in colours ranging from green to teal to yellow. Unfortunately, that was the only colour palette available, because the others were worth too much due to their high wavelength interval. “Man, I miss orange! This blue just won’t do!”, Daisy exclaimed as she clearly had too much of a muddled mind frame to understand the meaning of that statement today.

Okay, okay, so back to The Tree. His name was Paul and instead of having a bright orange-red beard, his was blue inserted with tiny, little firs which themselves housed tiny, little owls. He was out hunting between the three primary states and had business to do across all of them. Life Space was his first stop. He was looking for Alice and her dreadful creations from God. Then, it was onto Chon where he could take a break. Eat a cherry scone and perhaps accompany it with a hot drink of lemonade. And final resting place – Elevententeen. He was supposed to bring back some girl named Daisy. Apparently, she held a key to something. His bosses were still trying to figure it out.

We were.

“In about 5 minutes, I am going to explode!”

“Let it happen, man. Things don’t get better than that.”

I’ve got to walk faster now. Where the fuck did I go? Daisy picked up her pace, the sound of her soles squeaking becoming more intense. Finally, she arrived. She looked up and read the sign – Judge Judy. It was an imposing wooden structure that looked distorted when you peered up towards the roof. She was analyzing it a little bit, because it wasn’t from here. She could tell, its proportions were all wrong and the perspective of its facade was vibrating like a green on red channel. She actually wasn’t sure now if she should enter. But before she could decide further, the gigantic brass door opened and a dark, teal gray smoke began to generate from the bottom slants.

We.

“Pssst. Come in this way. I’ll leave the door open for you.”

Daisy knew who that was. It was darn Alice! How did she get in here? She knew better that Paul and Jared were looking for her. Her heart rate grew and it was becoming one of those distant Dreamsicles. She didn’t want any more of it. She was beginning to lose her originality and she wouldn’t be able to pick up a new set from Linz anytime soon. Daisy was heartbroken.

“If I can just get my mind past the pretense of it all, I might be able to recall something worthwhile.”

“You won’t do it. You don’t have the balls.”

The judge tore a sheet of paper out of her book and it made a long and terribly loud hissing sound – pppssssssssssssssssssssssssss! Was that really necessary, asked Alice. Judy replied with a hiss of her own, yes, yes it was. Daisy has come. Now what are we supposed to say? She will notice the difference. She can tell that we’re lying.

Daisy turned a sharp corner and again, cranked her neck upwards to preview the alarmingly high walls. Somewhere up top, there was a ceiling. It was all written in code. She wanted to read it so bad, but she slipped on the onyx glass floor, fumbling her belongings, of which a bright, green granny smith apple came flying out of her purse. Filburt ran ahead to catch it. Ugh, why are we even here, Daisy thought. Filburt answered her in his mind – Daisy, we are here because you are supposed to be here. We are trying to find the reason for Being. And, we need to present our findings to the tribune by December!

Alice sat affirmatively on a cushy yellow Dream. She took a bite and sighed. Judy followed by adjusting her large bottom on an orange one. They both sat in silence, chewing their gum.

On the left side wall, as soon as she turned the corner, Daisy saw two prints framed in gilded gold. One said Life, the other said Free. She wondered if she was supposed to be doing something with them. She tried lifting the frames off the wall, but they were drilled to it with solid steel jelly beans. Those things don’t move. She then placed her hand on their screens. The words flashed in different colours, but nothing else happened. Out of nowhere, two flashy young men appeared. She knew instantly who they were. It was The Need and The Pause. Chasing after her, of course.

The Writing she was doing was combining with Training. This was not supposed to happen. She was going to be in a lot of trouble. She just knew it. As an artist, she works. As a specialist, she writes. Ugh, this was not going to help her at the tribune. Just then, a booming voice entered the space, “Alice! Come forth to room 1!”

Daisy, she meant.

And that was that. She took off as fast as she could, carefully watching her step on the slippery glass stage. Blinking, Daisy looked around. “Class! It’s glass! Please pay attention!” Her forehead wrinkled. Again, she thought. When was it going to end? When was it the final end? “But today, my dear. Were you sleeping again?” Her teacher prompted as she handed her an exam. “Write this first. Then, we will determine what’s next.” Daisy shrugged. She had no choice anyway. So, she might as well participate. She squinted. At the corner of her eye, she saw them. She whipped her head around to see. But nothing. Just two barren doors. Totally uninteresting. Not brass even. She could have swore Tom Need and Tim Pause were there. Was she still asleep?

 

8 – Swimming

The chlorinated water stung her eyes. Daisy continued to grimace, holding her breath and paddling her arms amid graphic stingrays and intermittently exiting, bobbing jellyfish. The clock’s numbers were vibrantly green and for everyone waiting in the pool hall, silence waiting for Daisy to come up again.

That should do it. One red bling and one blue, right? She dove down deep to retrieve the jewels, opened her sight side and slipped each bling around one elbow at a time. She started to feel pressure building up and the water was shifting to purple. She knew, she only had so long to carry herself back to the top.

The audience gasped. Would she make it up in time? Nothing was blinging. The tiny green flags that sporadically twitched began releasing scents of star anise. The animals started to exit. They’ve seen enough of this to know, they had won once again. Even Shady and Slime left carrying newspapers and bamboo fibre mugs filled with nothing.

Daisy was officially up and her yellow-lime, green suit still had a bit of light going off. She carefully pruned her wet hair and felt a bit of black grease on the surface. Her fingers vibrated, making her starved. Is someone going to bring me a ham and cheese biscuit? It didn’t seem like it. It seemed freezing. Off-putting, really. She shook her head in a frenzy.

Down at the discotech, animals mingled with Others and creatures of all kinds. This particular store had been up since 1915, although only known to mankind since 2020. It became an entranceway for exportation. Stuff like new bed reclines or barbecued pork chop muffins. A discotech was not so much for dancing anymore. It was a space for replacing products that required an elevated service.

Daisy only visited once a year. She brought two blings, hoping to exchange them for sweet lemons and grass seed. When she would be able to return home, she would plant both, growing an aromatic space conducive to Each Other showing their faces once again. She missed them. When they left, there were no more sarcastic antics, there was only commenting.

Seventeen clutched her way through the jungly roughage, trying to bring sight back to her millions, in a way so they could both understand. Their relationship was deep, so deep that they barely communicated anymore. Thoughts were transmuted through IT or in sets of threes (the three most dominant voices in Daisy’s mind – Being, Artha and Manipura). It was hard to decipher love during digital warfare. She was right across from him, but they were a thousand years apart. He looked away, confused and horrified.

She sweated once. The mirror sang. They both waited for the reflection of Being; the union of Elevententeen.

Fighting is not complicated, it’s wrong. We should not resort to id. So, where does our ego belong?

6 – The Train Naps

Daisy was out, then she arose. She could feel the left side of her neck, bent out of shape and sore from sleeping on it bent. And the train was still moving across moist carpeted land or moss coloured greenery, however you wanted to see it. The trees, they looked like LEGO pieces. She didn’t quite understand when she transitioned back, but she was glad to be here, smelling the faint stink of a ham and cheese biscuit.

You don’t actually want to see the workings of Elevententeen. What’s behind it is extremely frightening. The framework is made up of spider-like grids, when you see it, they move and pulse like a living thing. Daisy shuddered at the mere thought of it. She quickly patted her yellow eyelet dress to ensure it was still in existence. Another way to halt the screams (screams occur when your brain computes the framework) was to enter Elevententeen with a very specific wardrobe, preferably containing bold colours, pattern and texture.

Sighing, Daisy remembered what it was like in social media school learning about plain stuff. Graphic art and design attributes were existential now, they served no purpose. People only wanted multi-dimensional graphics, that breathed and pulsed and held meaning. I guess altering genetics in 2019 completely erased the human need for new things and surprisingly, technology. It no longer occurred. It was too fickle and rambunctious; nobody cared. It was now about Artha, Manipura and finding pure bling that could get you back through the framework unnoticed.

There were no humans on the train today, only empty seats and a refined beaver quietly sipping Earl Grey. “Well, he looks…dry…and  relaxed…so he must have come from the land.” The beaver heard and adjusted his frames while cocking his head North East. He wanted to see if he could grab the newspaper from thin air instead of having to hold it in his hands. Paper was so archaic, he thought. Daisy wasn’t sure if he noticed her. Her heart skipped a beat and she stopped for a moment memory, as he again adjusted himself out of what looked like discomfort. Inhaling a deep breath, they both fell deeply asleep. The reflection on the mirror was blank. Someone had switched time and space, again. What was going to happen?

Start

Hi everyone! This is a story about taking naps. What would you do if you could start your nap over again?

Day by day, she fought to stay awake. At night, facing the wall, she could see her breath come back, stirring her into place. Her gaze could only see an odd, black shadow.

The plague.

Napping feverishly on an ex-boyfriend’s mattress, my breath came to me, rousing my face. There was no odd black shadow, only the installation piece (University of Calgary, Faculty of Art, 2001) I completed about a red cross and red intersecting paint brushes. Over time, the red morphed into a black matte surface, replacing the glowing red symbols with something different…

The sound.

I gasped for air, clutching my heart staring into Kevin’s barren closet. I saw myself as a ‘doctor’, healing the world from every known pain of mankind. In that moment, my heart sung and I cried. I felt adorned, yet I was confused as to how this could have happened. How could this be a reality that I, Chona Fe, changed the world? Healed it, in fact. How could I be the charging force that put everything into place?

The only other time this happened, I was napping, this time at my aunt’s house in one of the empty rooms. (Note: Filipino homes always have empty rooms; they’re probably accommodating ghosts.) All of the 90s furniture, including a stark, reflective black master’s bedroom set, had no meaning or design in that place. That place where I slumbered and was suddenly awoken again. I think I was 13, sitting up abruptly on the right side of the bed, staring at myself. Yelling. Screaming at the top of my lungs.

Stop!

I wasn’t looking at a reflection of ours.

The reflection.

My brother (Alan Abad) and cousins (Ryan and Vanessa Skinner), ran home from the playground in the centre of the crescent (71 Maryvale Cr. N.E., Calgary, AB). They heard me scream. They were horrified to think something horrible had happened. But nothing did. I was alive. I wasn’t attacked or eaten by monsters. Vanessa grabbed my shoulders, shaking vigorously and I blinked slowly three times, “What. The. I…don’t know what just happened, but I think…I died and saw…a different person…in…” I couldn’t even continue. It was that bad.

Scared?