Skipping stones

May 22, 2009

“Hurry up Ann!” I whispered loudly. This wasn’t the first time my sister and I crept out of the house but something just told me we were in for a surprise.

“It’s not my fault you’re taller and have longer legs. Besides, don’t worry, the pond will still be there when we get there.” Ann. Always sarcastic. I wonder if someday I’ll be able to make a joke out of anything like her. Or at least annoy her enough, to where she knows how it feels being the older brother who has to keep up with her. Maybe someday I’ll need her help and she’ll understand me. Who knows? We might even become best friends for life as she says. Surely nothing to be proud of, but still, it’s nice to know how your sister thinks of you.

“Watch out. What are you trying to do? Hit yourself in the head? You know, that wouldn’t be smart of you because you’re already dumb.” I guess Ann will always be Ann.

“Thanks. I guess I wasn’t paying attention.” I sounded so feeble, but what else could I say?

After 10 minutes or so, we finally made it to the pond. I checked my phone to see what time it was. It was just before midnight.

“You want to have a contest?” I asked, already knowing the answer, or would you call that a snap?

“Edward. Seriously? Isn’t that the point of being here? I swear you’re getting dumber everyday.” What did I tell you? She snapped like always. But someday, I just know it; we’ll be best friends and share all of our secrets. What is wrong with me? Why do I keep thinking like this?

“What ever. Choose 5 pebbles and do you want to make a bet?” I fervently hoped she would say yes. I had to pay an overdue book. I know what you’re thinking. Wouldn’t that be like, 5 cents a day? Yeah, well when you haven’t turned it in for about half the school year … you sort of owe around … well let’s just say it’s more than $5.

“No, because I’m pretty sure you’re broke. Let’s start.” With that she threw a pebble at the pond.

“One…two…three.” Ann counted with a huge smile. I threw my rock next with skill. (Twisting it before letting go and then watching after it.)

“One…two…three…four…five.” Ann counted. The game kept on going like that, with no one the winner. But by the fifth round something strange happened.

I threw the pebble like always but…it didn’t skip…it…it…it hovered and then came back to me. I threw it back out…and it came back. What if it’s a new kind of species? It could be named after me, since I discovered it! But…what if aliens found us before we found them? Scientists believe aliens would be green freaks with three eyes and two fingers. But, what if they were giants with mind control? Or even better, shape shifters?! That would be so cool! Maybe we could become friends and…

“What is wrong with that rock? Doesn’t it know about gravity?” Ann interrupted me.

“I guess not. I’m going to take it home. Let’s go.”

“No you aren’t or I’ll tell mom.” This is totally not the time to argue.

“Well, if you do tell, you’ll be in trouble too. Because if you haven’t noticed both of us are here, both of us snuck out, and both of us saw the rock hover not skip. So, what do you prefer 1) we both get in trouble or 2) we keep the rock until we know what it is?”

“3) I keep the rock, we both study it and try to figure out what it is, and if we don’t know in a week we tell mom.” Why, oh, why does she always have to order me around? Worst of all, why do I always accept?

“Okay. Let’s go before mom wakes up.”

The next day seemed to pass like a blur. All I remember is having a lot of homework and a conversation with Fred at lunch.

“Hey, Fred!” I said as I sat besides him.

“Huh? Oh. Hey.” He seemed distracted and a little spooked out.

“What’s up? You seem…distracted.”

“Nothing…well…okay. I know how you go to the pond at nights…and…and…”

“And what?! You better not have told someone!” I was furious. I mean just the thought of my favorite spot being taken away from me because my best friend told on me…well of course I’d be more than furious.

“No! No, of course not. What I…I went to the pond because… well… I was looking for you. I mean I wanted to talk because I had gotten mad with my parents. But that’s not the problem. The problem is what I saw on my way there.” He whispered the last part.

“You mean the flying rock?”
“What!? I saw something... Or at least I saw someone…oh never mind” said Fred.

“Well, what did you see?” I asked. Usually Fred’s muttering didn’t bother me, but right now he was getting on my nerves.

“Well… it seemed to me like a man, but it could have been anything”

“Did you see what the person or thing looked like”?

“Well it seemed to me like a kid but I could be mistaken. It was dark, but it seemed to me like he had brown hair, glowing green eyes, and the same height as us”


“Bye Fred,” I said. I was relived to go; another word and I’d think he was crazy.

“Bye,” Fred said confused

“Hhhheeeeyyyy stupid,” said a squeaky little voice. All of a sudden Ann was in my room and like always insulting me.
I don’t know what got into me, but for some reason I said, “Hey moron! Did I ever mention that your clothes look really pretty?”
“No?” said Ann looking slightly confused.
“Well good, because their so ugly, that I want to through up on them. But it looks like one of your little friends already did.” And for one moment, in Ann’s life, she was rendered speechless.

The next night I went to the pond alone and I sat there when all of a sudden I felt a tap on my shoulder. I turn around and find my sister stalking me. But she wasn’t looking at me; she was staring at the other side of the pond.
“What is it?” she whispered.
“I don’t know.” I whisper back.
“Want to play a game?” I asked without knowing I wanted to play a game. I mean what is up with me. First I think of weird stuff. Then I saw mean things to Ann and then I start saying things I don’t even know I wanted to say or do.
“Sure. I’d love to.” She looked as confused as I was.
“Okay. Pick up 2 pebbles.” Again I said without meaning it.
I must be wearing the same dumb founded face as Ann because she is now staring at me as we both pick up 2 pebbles without looking.
“Come on! I thought kids your age, my age, would have fun skipping rocks but you…you look scared.” Said the guy, or thing, that was across the pond.
We tried, or at least I know I did, to lift our heads up to watch him but we couldn’t move any more. All I got a glimpse of was, a floating body coming toward us.
“Play.” He instructed.
We got up and started to skip rocks.
“One…two…three.” Ann counted as usual, only this time she looked like she wished she could scream for help.
“I win!” I say as the last pebble fell.
“That sounds more like it!” He said cheerfully. “So…um…I’m really sorry about the…the hovering rock. I mean I was just kidding around. Didn’t mean to scare you. Sorry. What’s your name?” He seemed friendly. But I didn’t trust him.
No one spoke until he forced it out of us as only he knows how.
“Edward.” I said as Ann said, “Ann,” at the same time.
“So, Edward and Ann, what else do you do besides skip pebbles?” He said then shook his head. “Wait. I’m sorry. I guess I should explain about the rock and how I can control your mind and how I made the rock hover. Okay. Well…I’m…I’m special in my own way. No. No no. I’m a vampire.” Ann and me froze as he said that last would. “No, don’t freak. Please don’t. I want to make friends and have a family. I’m tired of having to hide out. I promise I can control myself.” He whispered.
“Okay. So since you want to be a normal boy so bad, do you want to skip pebbles?” I whispered. I thought that if I entertained him, Ann could escape and get the FBI down here.
“Yes! No, you can’t do that. I won’t let that happen. All I want is some friends.” With that we started to play.
“My name is Jasper by the way.”

With that the little kids around me started to clap and laugh. Little kids always like happy endings don’t they? What they don’t know is that Jasper…exists.

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