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Part of Your World

I look in the mirror at my face. My face is the spitting image of my grandmother's. Fiery red hair, green eyes and delicate freckles across my cheeks reflect my Irish heritage. Sure, I'm a ginger. I don't get offended easily. I've heard all the jokes before; nothing is new to me.

The reason I'm staring at myself in the mirror? Good question. I'm getting ready for a dress rehearsal. I'm in 'The Little Mermaid'. Given my hair color, my acting talent, and singing abilities, I was cast as Ariel. No surprise, right?

I quickly brush out my long red hair and apply a light coat of lipstick. Taking my bag in one hand and my keys in the other, I run downstairs and into the kitchen.
"Mom, I'm going to rehearsal. Opening night's tomorrow!" I call to the other room as I grab a pear for the ride.
"Okay, Hun. I love you! Nana and Papa are coming to your show too, don't forget. Remember to reserve seats!" She calls back to me.
"Got it! Love ya!" I hop into the car, and start it up.

I'm doing the play with Jacob, who's playing Eric. We used to be best friends, until Olivia came along. Long story short, she wormed her way between us, somehow turned Jacob against me, and he's been mad at me ever since. I still don't know why... Olivia auditioned for the part of Ariel as well. However, she landed Ursula, which cracks me up. There never was anything romantic between Jacob and I, but it's the fact that Olivia was so sure she was going to get the part, she made a point of telling the whole school so. I feel kind of bad for her sometimes, given the fact that she has zero self-esteem. I think we could've been friends...

I pull up to my final dress rehearsal and walk into my high school's theater. I'm quickly fitted with my tail and shells, and get ready for the scene when Eric first sees Ariel; when he's waking up on the beach.

Jacob is lying on the 'beach' in his costume, eyes closed. I lay on my side next to him, one hand resting on his chest. His eyes flicker open. For a second, I see something there, a spark, a flash, a streak, of something. I don't know what, but it quickly disappears and he shuts his eyes. In the brief second that follows I miss his blue eyes, but I prepare for the scene.
"Action!" I hear someone yell, and the music begins. I start to sing, and a soft wind comes from behind me, blowing a few stray strands of hair out from its gently mussed style. As Jacob starts to wake, the director climbs on stage.
"Stop, stop, stop! Cut! Riley," Thomas, the director, turns to me. "I'm not feeling you. I need to feel your love for this boy. You've just rescued him, and you've already fallen in love. More emotion!" He stomps down the stairs on the side and sits back down in his chair.
The scene resumes and I sing again, and I sing to Jacob. I sing to the boy who used to be my best friend and sing with feeling. I stroke his cheek, along his jawbone. His wavy black hair falls away from his face as he moves his head to the side. He opens his eyes slowly, blinking once or twice. I see it again, that look in his eyes. He smiles ever so slightly, bringing his hand up to my hair to bring a stray piece behind my ear. I hear the footsteps of Grimsby, played by George, a friend of Jacob's. I pull away from Jacob and dive into the 'water'. The scene is over.

I get up, loosen my 'tail', and jog over to Thomas.
"Was that better?" I ask him.
"Much," he replies. "Go get ready for the 'Kiss the Girl' scene, okay?"
"'Kay!" I call and walk off to costumes when I bump into Jacob.
"Sorry," he mutters and walks past me.
"Wait, Jacob," I turn around. "Why are you still mad at me? What was it that I did?" He sighs and walks back over. He gestures to the stairs along the rows of chairs in the theater. We sit together.
"Okay. Liv told me a while ago that when she went over to your house once, you told her... you told her that I was a complete idiot and I couldn't act. You also said that you'd rather die than be friends with me, and that you were only doing it because you wanted to be "popular". That's why I've never talked to you since. I didn't want you to use me." He looks down at his hands.
"Jacob, Olivia has never been over to my house. Ever. The only time she's spoken to me, is to throw me an insult. Trust me, I never said any of that. I'm so sorry you thought that was true. I actually-"
I get cut off.
"Riley! Are you in costume yet? Jacob?" Thomas yells at us.
"I'll be right there!" I get up and leave Jacob on the steps.

I'm just finishing pulling on the dress that Ariel wears for the particular scene when I'm being called on set.
"Coming!" I say and climb up to the stage. I climb in the boat across from Jacob and smile.
"Are we good?" I ask apprehensively.
"Yeah. I was stupid to think that you and Liv ever hung out. I'm really sorry." He grins and grabs hold of the oars.
"Yeah, me too." I say as the music starts and Sebastian starts to sing from in front of the stage. The scene mostly focuses on his singing and the performance, but when the music kicks up, I'm ready.
I put on my dewey-eyed face and smile sweetly. Jacob smiles easily as the music swells. He leans in towards me, and I respond, doing the same. My heart pounds. Our lips are about to meet when the boat flips upside down, and a section of the stage lowers itself down a few feet. We tumble onto the mattress set below the stage. The two backstage people help us up. Underneath the stage, are beams that hold up individual sections of the stage, so we can lower them at our leisure. We walk together to the side doors and to Thomas.
"Perfect," He says clapping his hands together. I can't wait for Opening Night! You two are really great together. Keep it up," He calls to the whole theater. "You guys can go home, now! Great job, everybody!" Jacob takes my hands in his, as a bunch of people flood out from backstage.
"You were great." He says.
"You were amazing." I reply. Jacob wraps me in a hug, resting his head on mine.
"Jacob!" I hear a slightly whiny voice from behind me screech. "Can I just ask why you're hugging her?" Olivia. We pull away at the same time. She's standing there, hands on her hips.
"Yes, you can. Riley told me the truth. You lied to me. And seriously? You are actually okay with doing that to me? Olivia, you hurt me in too many ways. We're done." Jacob says firmly.
"WHAT!?" Olivia yells much too loudly. "So what if I lied a little bit? You CANNOT break up with me."
"I just did." He takes my hand gently and we walk out together
Opening night passes in a blur. The cast has taken their final bows to roaring applause, and Jacob and I are backstage. I'm walking out of the Dressing Room, when Jacob runs to me and picks me up, spinning me around.
"Riley! That was awesome!" I laugh as he sets me down.
"Thank you! You were fantastic." he smiles at me and hugs me tightly.
"Riley, I wanna be something." he whispers in my ear.
"What's that?" I ask.
"Part of your world." he answers. I can't do anything, but kiss him.
"You'll always be a part of my world. There's nothing that will ever change that."

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BookLover128This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Feb. 26 at 5:01 pm:
I don't think it flows as well as it should, but that's what experimenting is for, right?
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