Hello, welcome to the SUMMER Blog-a-Day! I’m really excited to be given the opportunity to feature my story, I hope you enjoy it. It started out as a few ideas hastily jotted down after I’d been for a walk, and luckily it stayed in my head until I got home. Now after a lot of tweaking and scribbling I’m finally happy with the end result, so please read on for my little tale. Also do have a look on Kay Macleod’s Website in the ‘Events’, category, to read the other wonderful stories featured on the BLOG-a-day, written by some great authors.
But enough of me. I’d like to introduce you to a certain girl trying very hard to be someone she’s not….however it doesn’t seem to be working very well….
Ella stood in front of her bedroom mirror staring at her reflection. Her wavy blond hair was tousled and her almond-shaped green eyes had tiny bags under them, from yet another troubled nights sleep. A pretty girl of medium height and slim build, she groaned inwardly, her shoulders slumping at the thought of the day ahead. Going into the shower Ella turned the dial to cold trying to get her mind to function. It kind of did the trick as she felt her head clearing a little. Drying herself off she put on her school uniform, and with a sigh walked slowly down the stairs.
Ella’s older sister Layla, dropped her off at the school gates that morning. “You need to stand up to them you know, grow a thicker skin.” Ella hated that phrase, Layla used it all the time and it had started to grate on her.
“Thanks for the lift.”
Layla raised her eyebrows, but her voice softened. “You’ll be fine, just keep a low profile ok?”
“I just want to be normal Lal.”
“Ha, me too, then maybe I’d be able to keep hold of a guy for more than one week!” She winked then sped off, too fast as usual.
Walking through the school gates Ella prepared herself for the taunts and snide remarks to start. The other kids were uncomfortable around her because she was different, they didn’t like different and made it very clear to her. Three girls in particular had made her life a misery right from the start. The ringleader, Tina, was tall and slim with shoulder length hair, dyed shocking pink. She seemed to have a perpetual sneer on her face, which would have been quite pretty otherwise. The other two were like sheep, following her around, acting tough and always joining in with the taunts but never starting them. It made Ella wonder what they’d be like if they hadn’t taken up with Tina.
Petunia who hated her name, and insisted on being called Pet, was about the same size as Ella but with dark hair. She wore it short with a blunt cut fringe, and sported a black oversized jacket, which she wore over her uniform if she could get away with it.
Lisa was a little shorter and slightly overweight, her school jumper was as baggy as she could get it and her hair, brown in colour, was long and thick.
As Ella feared, all three of them were lounging against the fence in the playground when she arrived, and it didn’t take long for the taunting to start. Remembering her sister’s words, Ella tried to ignore them, but for some reason it wasn’t working that day and she decided she’d had enough. “Why are you doing this?”
“The little mouse has a voice then,” said Tina sarcastically.
“You haven’t answered my question,” said Ella striding over. Tina smirked pushing her roughly, but Ella managed to stay on her feet.
“You’re a weirdo talking to yourself, we’ve heard you!”
“We have too,” joined in Petunia.
“I may as well talk to myself Petunia, at least I can have an intelligent conversation,” Ella replied, lowering her voice and clenching her fists by her side.
“Don’t you dare call me that,” yelled Petunia.
While Ella was distracted by Petunia, Tina sprang forward to grab her. Ella dodged, moving so quickly that Tina want sprawling. Hitting her knees hard against the tarmac she cried, “ouch where’s she gone?”
“Here,” Ella whispered and the other two girls fell forward, feeling small hands against their backs but seeing no one. Sprawled on the ground, mouths agape and eyes wide, Ella appeared in front of the group. “This ends here, got it?” Speechless they all nodded, and springing to their feet raced away.
“Freak!” Lisa yelled as a parting shot.
Ella felt a warning tingle down her back, she’d gone too far. Using one of her magical skills could have so easily made her change into her true self. She needed to stay in control, it would be disastrous if people discovered she and Layla weren’t actually human.
As youngsters, the girls didn’t realise that they were different, and their mother hoped they hadn’t inherited the gene that would gradually take over their bodies. When her worst fears came true she was forced to tell them the truth, in order for them to understand what they really were, and learn how to control it.
Water Sprites had lived in the waters of the world for centuries, but as they became polluted, many of them became ill, poisoned by the chemicals released into it. Not having the antibody’s to fight the pollution they were ingesting, they began to perish, and the only way to survive was for them to exist on land instead. As magical beings they took on the human form and lived alongside them for many centuries.
When a beautiful Sprite called Fay met and fell in love with a human, they brought two baby girls into the world. But Fay had no idea that the Water Sprite gene would be lying dormant within her children. She had condemned them to a life where they would never truly fit in and spent the rest of her years overcome with guilt. Their father never knew the truth either and when they were tragically killed in a car accident, Layla and Ella were left to survive by themselves.
Ella didn’t stay at school after the fight, she couldn’t face it and didn’t want to bump into Tina and her friends anymore that day. It was a long walk home but she didn’t care and wasn’t at all looking forward to telling Layla what had happened. They told each other everything, Ella knew she would never survive without her older sister. ‘She’ll be furious,’ she thought, walking with her head down. The sound of a group of children coming towards her made Ella jump, using her supernatural speed she hid behind a tree, if any of them had seen it happen they’d have thought she’d vanished into thin air. As the group passed by oblivious, she began to cry. “Ive done it again, if they’d looked over I would have given myself away….” she started to sob.
Layla had come home early, she was worried about Ella after she’d dropped her off at school. Deciding she needed cheering up she’d planned on taking her for pizza. She busied herself tidying the house while waiting for her to come back from school. As time passed and Ella still wasn’t back she started to get worried. Grabbing her jacket and car keys she rushed out of the house, a feeling of dread beginning to take hold.
“Where are you, where are you?” Layla drove around all the places she could think of to look for her, there was no sign. ‘The lake of course, I bet she’s gone for a swim,’ she thought. They both loved water, diving in they could become the magical creatures they were supposed to be. Layla swung the car around and headed there, driving erratically, with that feeling of dread lingering even then. Parking above the bank of the lake, Layla ran down nearly falling over her own feet in her haste. Ella’s clothes were lying in a heap but she couldn’t see her sister swimming in the lake. A note lay on top of her clothes, Layla was shaking as she read the words. ‘Oh Layla it’s so exciting they found me, our true family, I’ve gone to be with them. Please come too we’re all waiting.’
“Oh god no.” Layla dived into the lake fully clothed, swimming strongly as she felt her body change into her Water Sprite form. There were so few of her kind left and she was certain non lived in the river. ‘Don’t be dead, please don’t be dead,’ she thought diving deeper……
Once Ella had pulled herself together she decided to go to the lake, relishing the thought of the cool water on her skin as she changed into her true self, lithe and shimmering, becoming one with the movement of the water. ‘Just a quick swim,’ she thought stripping off her clothes and running in. As her body took on its true form Ella wished she could stay there forever. Diving down she saw movement beneath her, then an odd shimmering. Curiosity getting the better of her, Ella swam towards it. There in front of her was an underwater cave the shimmering coming from the stone that glistened all around the entrance. Then she heard whispering and giggling coming from inside. Warily she swam in then stopped dead. “Wow,” she hadn’t meant to say that out loud as heads turned her way.
“Wow indeed,” said a beautiful Sprite at least twice her size, her green eyes widening as she took in the sight of Ella, who began backing out of the cave. One of the other Sprites swam behind her blocking Ella’s exit.
“Sorry, I was swimming and saw this light you see, I wont tell anyone,” she stammered.
“Why are you afraid, you are one of us after all, well nearly,” she smiled. “A bit on the small side for a Sprite but that’ll be the human part of you. I am Tali, the High Sprite of this lake, you are welcome here.”
“But I thought non of you, um, us lived in water anymore, because of the pollution, the poisoning!”
“The water in this lake is pure, untainted. Why do you think you and your sister were drawn to it?”
Ella’s eyes widened.
“We’ve been watching you both child, it was only a matter of time, but where’s your sister?”
Ella quickly told them about the incident at school that day, and despite herself burst into tears once more. “I don’t ever want to go back.”
“Then don’t, stay with us we’ll look after you.”
“But what about Layla, she’ll be so worried I can’t leave her.”
“Will she come looking for you, I mean, here?”
“Yes of course, I’ll go and wait for her, bring her to all of you,” said Ella turning to swim to the surface.
“It’s too much of a risk, if someone saw you and decided to investigate we could be discovered.”
A shy voice form the side of Tali said quietly, “she could leave a note on her clothes.”
“Yes of course! I have my schoolbag, it wont take long.” she looked imploringly at Tali.
Tali looked dubious. Flicking back her red hair she said, “alright but hurry, we’ll watch over you.”
Layla kept on swimming, “I have to find her, I shouldn’t have snapped, I….what’s that?” She saw a shimmering beneath her, diving deeper a figure appeared at the entrance to a cave. “You found my note then?” Ella asked, her eyes glistening. “Welcome home dear sister,” she said excitedly swimming over to give her a big hug. “Come and meet our new family.”