This is a fan story by AllyTrish34, inspired by the FantasTeen novel Lucid Dream. It's a part of a story with lots of segments. It is told from Yolanda Schneider's point of view (aka first-person POV). Warning: this story is reminiscent of many teen novels, but with milder themes.
As far as I can throw, I wasn't born this way. My name is Yolanda Schneider, and I'm a shapeshifter, born fairy. My childhood is like any other kid's: screaming, crying, lots of fun games, ups and downs, blah, blah, blah.
But when I turned twelve - in seventh grade, as I'm born one year later than most kids in my grade - everything had to change.
Yeah, just from the beginning of the year I would turn so, my skin felt weird, like something was going to shoot out of it. To cap it off, I often felt weak. Limp. I mostly stayed on my bed. If I was at school, I faced with two choices that lay in store for me: push myself to the breaking point and pay a visit to the nurse's office, or stay there and miss all the lessons. I didn't tell anything about this to my parents and I never will.
Luckily, the more I lay, the more my batteries would be recharged. They recharged quicker than usual.
Just in case you're thinking, yes, I have never experienced an ailment like this.
I'm an only child, so Mom and Dad are very overprotective, and I hate it. Once, they rushed me to the hospital for a medical checkup, but the doctor had no idea what was happening with my body.
My parents gave up (for some reason), but finally I turned twelve. I woke up in the morning just to see myself up and running, like the eleven months of torture had only been a nightmare. I excitedly asked my parents if we could go to Disneyland, but they questioned my health first before reluctantly agreeing.
So, as a birthday gift, I got privileges to ride a rollercoaster. This is it. This is the moment of truth. A wish come true, I thought.
I'm not the type of person who barfs after riding an amusement-park ride. But no, I hate those that spin the riders in one or more directions way too fast. So spinning teacups aren't really my thing. Nonetheless, my childhood friend Tambry and I are a match made in heaven when it comes to dizzying rides, Mom always says. But so far, I have only ridden, you know, that one that spins its riders not too fast but abruptly tilting the seats up and down. Nope, not merry-go-rounds. I simply grok things...sometimes.
"Mom, would you accompany me on the Space Mountain?" I blurted out, and that just came out of the blue. Not that I was afraid, anyway.
Mom, who was driving our Lexus, giggles. "I would love to, but no thanks."
I frowned. "Why?"
She told me why as she tried to keep her focus on whatever was happening ahead of us. Apropos to that, I'd ever heard that even micro-sleep during driving could cause traffic accidents...sometime when I watched National Geographic. So, Mom couldn't ride small trains on tilted tracks because she wasn't strong to do it. But other than that, she used words that were too technical for a twelve-year-old, so I pieced everything together by looking at the context.
Sometimes, adults don't care who they're talking to. For example, technical things and all that jazz. As you get older, you understand things better Don't they know that too-specific things are mumbo jumbo for kids?
I asked Dad the same thing with Mom's case. Different subject, same answer:
In his case, he simply threw up after riding one. 180° of my side. Get it? He was simply on the south of my north. So, when he was in high school, he had braved himself to take a ride on one, and had ended up throwing up afterward.
I burst into laughter. I didn't know what was so funny other than the result of my fantasy. Oh, blame my count-your-chickens-before-they-hatch nature. It may as well as be some intuitive sense. Scenes of me riding the rollercoaster, having fun, and not puking or getting dizzy kept playing in my brain.
"Yolanda," Mom says, snapping me out of my thoughts. "Your physical pro is what pilots need. They go through a series of tests to see if they're worth it. There's one that benefits gyroscopic—"
"Lorelei, Lorelei," Dad said a little too impatiently, putting a stress on each word. He paused to — probably — create a dramatic effect. Then, as if nobody had been talking before, he hysterically screams, "We're about to CRAAASSSHHHH!!!!"
I jolted, surprised. In front of us was a truck. Its illuminating headlights and grill created an impression of a shark's mouth — no, I wasn't sure — and it really was going our way. Before I could ask her what gyroscopic meant, Mom's mouth emitted a loud ululation.
Then everything turned black.
Consciousness rained down on me, and I realized that I was in a hospital. This isn't my first time; I'd ever been to one when Aunt Clarinda had been laid up with food poisoning. The hospital had been a Winter Wonderland back then — I know what you're thinking, but, no, it hadn't been freezing — all white. But for some reason, it was as black as coal now. Were we caught in a blackout? Was the electricity supply terminated, thanks to not paying the electric? If it weren't for the pungent smell, which is reminiscent of hospitals, and a woman telling me that I was in the hospital, I wouldn't know that I was.
"What happened? Why am I in the hospital? Imma head to the lake," I spoke to the person I was speaking to — a nurse? The Maker?
"You were caught in an accident, miss," she sweetly said. "Your parents are all right. They're in another room. Calm down, they will wake up..."
"Why can't you just switch on the lights? Are you broke to pay the electric?" I asked, cutting her off, like usual, never caring about the answer of my questions. Never mind. What mattered was just to keep firing questions, because adults' answers were sometimes mumbo jumbo, like I'd said before.
But this time, the woman didn't just answer. She held my hand and ran her hand across. Millions of apologetic words escaped her mouth. Again, I could not understand them. Nonetheless, there was a sentence that I understood deeply, and knew what it meant: "You lost your vision."
The reason that my head was pounding dawned on me.
Straight afterward, my parents signed me up for a corneal transplant — doctor's advice. They doubted the idea at first, but thanks to the doctor's persuasive explanation, they no longer did.
A bunch of tests were taken. Questions, borrowed money, tears, and prayers — all in spades. My grandmothers and aunts came with torrential tears running down their faces, bringing tuna casseroles, mac-and-cheese, apple pies included. My uncles also carried toys for me that I couldn't take a look at.
I didn't expect that the cornea arrived in a flash of lightning. It was from a girl, still living, but was willing to give up one of her most priceless things, they said. The cornea happened to fit me like a glove coincidentally. My parents and my extended family were so ecstatic. While the doctors hurried to prepare my surgery — they wanted me to see the light, literally, as soon as possible, I heard — I pondered the donor. She was a girl. If I could see her later on, we might, just might, be friends, if she liked dolls like I did.
I will not tell you the procedures of the blasted transplantation, which was scary, boring, and complicated. All you need to know is just that the pain was deep as the Pacific Ocean! Don't you think that I was overjoyed afterward. It hurt every time I had to blink. Two types of lubricant eye drops were on my daily to-do list, and my vision still remained blurred! I tried not to sob. If I sob, I wouldn't stop and my eyes would be all red, which was the condition of my eyes now. I'll be darned if my eyes deepened a shade into the color of obsidian.
Everything changed, not only that. Thank God, my eyesight was restored 100% a few weeks later. I can see things clearly now. Contrary to my eyes, which weren't under any complication, my doctor advised Mom and Dad to routinely send me for a monthly medical check-up. Things look normal now. I'm no longer afraid of the dark. Previously, everywhere I was, darkness surrounded me, no matter how many light bulbs I switched on. But at this moment, I had a new reason to be afraid.
That. The kid, who sat at the waiting room.
Mom grinned and offered me a cone of chocolate ice cream, and I nodded. As I licked, I focused on him. Something was wrong with him.
He had a bloody nose.
Did I mention I'm afraid of blood as well, besides height and Friday the 13th's?
I stuck out my tongue to lick my dessert, but it was indigo and longer than usual. I pulled it back inside. What happened? Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse, I started shape-shifting for the first time. Into a Masai giraffe. I sprinted down the hallway, not caring if I dropped the ice cream, to get away from people. Apparently, there were more in front of me when I successfully transformed. They all stood frozen, then ran away screaming.
What the heck was happening?
Like I said before, I wasn't born this way. I remember exactly when Phoebe and Jason were playing hide-and-seek with me in sixth grade, without two additional kids with torn clothes. I remember my spatially wide classroom, and am sure nobody ever set their butt on the chair at the back, next to the window.
My world spins very slowly. Very slowly and infested with fear. I often burst into tears and shrieked, because they stared at me via my bedroom window — next to my spring bed. I can't sleep on my own. I sleep with my parents, and I don't give a darn what my friends say. I can't do things on my own. If possible, I don't want to set my foot on any bathroom.
I tell my friends about it, but unfortunately, fear transfers from me to them like a virus. Even worse, "insane" is my middle name, according to them, and I lose all my friends. That's why I'm all alone now.
I can't conquer my fear — not yet. Little girls with blood stains on their gowns (they must have been in a terrible accident) playing a yellow ball at a garden, a girl with a partly burned arm with her melted doll, which creates a funny lump on her hand, a boy with broken intestines after being kidnapped by bad guys... My human friends are apparently more frightening than them. As I grow up and age older, they kept bullying me and labeling me "insane".
Once, a group of boys and girls wanted to befriend me, asking me if I could see clearly...well, everything that I can see. I nodded, hoping they would understand me. Instead, they would drag me all the way to the storage room and lock me inside. And I would be banging on the door, asking for help. The first time it happened, I passed out, thanks to my overloaded fear. But I got used to it, and confronted them in a form of a spotted hyena. Baring my teeth at them was more than enough. Soon, I no longer got teased. And they stopped doing that.
My family and I move to Gloucester, Massachusetts eventually during the summer holiday when I will be a sophomore — a tenth grader. To start over, Mom says. But the main reason is that Dad got a job there. I didn't mind. In fact, I'm relieved. I can start a brand-new life out of Rye, New Hampshire. The lipsticked girl with scars that resemble the monster of Frankenstein's, who almost always accompanies me while I eat breakfast, doesn't scare me anymore. I can control myself. As long as I don't say anything about what I see, I'll be okay.