The snow descended on the Max Outer Layer. There was silence in the small town of Madjesko. It was a Thursday and CJ Dixon was plagued with insomnia. Reoccurring dreams always a problem for her, they were even worse when her past got involved. She rose from her bed; and dragged her feet to the Imager. She was stopped short by what she saw. Her eyes. They were stone white, and she blinked hard. The very sight forced her to repeat a mantra.
"I'm dreaming. I'm dreaming. I'm dreaming." She was relieved when she squeezed tight, and opened her eyes again.
Just the way they were supposed to be, both eyes, and they were the right color: blue.
"Back to school, better get ready." her alarm hadn't rung yet, so she chose to wait for it. She was then startled by the sound of the alarm. Getting ready for school was never on her favorite-things-to-do list. All her classmates were Con-serve, and worse Thorsen Academy Preparatory School or TAPS, forced entailed school uniforms. Being a Radikal, she dreaded the style along with the design. She tossed the uniform onto her bed and glared at it. Short haired though she was, CJ could still manage to stand out. Nothing would be done about the clothes, but something was always done about her hair. Curls were a good choice, but glitter was her specialty.
"Hey Ceej!" a voice called, not just any voice. One she knew and loved, her best friend's.
William King was a big part of her life. Even though he was a Ranger, CJ never considered him one of them. She went over to the window, and couldn't remove the smile planted on her face. He was tall with semi-wide shoulders. Brown skin, like hers, and he had these brown eyes that you couldn't help but believe every time. A few bruises, but that usually came with his job.
"Happy New Year! I see you're still wearin' that ugly Ranger uniform!" she said happily.
"Huh! I see you're still wearing those ugly prescription lenses! Oh! And Happy New Year back!" he shouted up to her, she smiled and gave him a funny expression.
Will was everything for her, a brother, a counselor, a protector, and best of all, a father. Patrice was the actual reason for his early Choice in life, forcing him to break their childhood pact.
"Here for breakfast, again?" she asked,
"What can I say? Brenda's a great cook!" he replied.
Her future-stepmother wasn't her favorite person. Aside from her father, she would be a close second place. She watched him head for the door, then continued with her morning routine. In the kitchen, another morning routine takes place. Brenda was putting the final touches on her presentation. She looked professional, and casual in her catering uniform and house slippers. Her cowlicks always made her hair impossible to manage, even for most stylists. She had a confidence about her, that no one seemed to understand, but she never cared enough to notice. She balanced four plates on both arms, easily.
"Voilà!" she said and placed their breakfast down. She went into the hallway to change shoes. "I'm trying something new, you guys enjoy it." she said over her shoulder.
She watched the look on Malcolm's face, happy with the result.
"Wow! This is good Brenda, new ingredient or spice?" asked Will
"Trade secret." she teased.
Minutes later, CJ descended the stairs. Her hair was curly with a few stands of glitter. Her T.A.P.S. uniform never changed, but she dressed it up using a string for a necklace, with a charm attached. Her father glared at her whole statement. She pouted, and sat down at the table. Minutes later, Brenda was at her side, she touched CJ's shoulder. With her father there, she couldn't roll her eyes, so she smiled at her instead.
"Morning sweetie!" she said that word again. CJ rolled her eyes, in her head.
"Morning, Brenda how'd you sleep?" she replied.
"Just fine, thanks."
The girl could care less about the woman's sleep patterns, but it was all she could think of. Her father was also watching her every move, so politeness was all there would be, or synthetic civility, in her case. CJ leaned in Will's direction, she smiled wickedly.
"So, do you even have food at your house?" she teased.
Malcolm stomped his foot in anger. "Cicely! He is your Authoritative Superior, you will show him some respect!" he yelled.
"Yeah! Show some respect." Will replied with his mouth full.
[You don't make it easy.] She thought.
She giggled at her own mind; she couldn't help it, Will always made her laugh, and it was hard to ever take him seriously, in her opinion. The timer went off, and everyone was mobile. Time-to-Goes were constant in the household.
First Malcolm, then Will, and finally Brenda, to drive CJ to school. They walked him to the door, as a send-off. He waved a passive hand to all, and they did the same. CJ turned her back, once he was in his car. Will said goodbye to his bestie, by squeezing her nose.
"Behave yourself." he teased.
"Me? Do you think I won't?" she asked nasally, and pulled her face away.
He smiled and ran toward his automobile.