The Wish Girl
Author's note: I wrote this as a short story but it ended up being long. It's really not a novel, only 3 small... Show full author's note »
PART I: WHEN YOU WISHI never believed in wishes. They were superstitious. I was too practical a girl for wishes. That is, until that day in Spanish class.
“Conjugate decir in the preterit, Marisol,” Señora said, calling me by my Spanish name. I didn’t know the answer.
I wish I were invisible, I thought miserably as I slumped lower in my seat. That’s about when the fingers started pointing, jaws began dropping, and when Señora started screaming.
“What?” I said, standing up. “What?” I looked around the room. Several of the guys were bug eyed, and there was quite a bit of frightened whispering going on between the popular girls in the back row. Some of the girls looked just plain scared. People were gasping in disbelief. Ashley looked ready to faint.
Wow. I didn’t know we were in drama class.
All eyes were on me. I looked down at myself, wondering what I’d done. That’s when I saw it.
Or rather, didn’t see it. I didn’t see anything. I was not there! I really was invisible.
I couldn’t think with all this screaming. I needed to sit down. I wish they’d stop screaming, I thought. Immediately, the screaming stopped. Okay. What is going on…? I thought, sinking back into my chair. How did I do that? I just wished I… I paused, thinking hard, knitting my invisible eyebrows together. Then I had a brilliant idea. I wish I weren’t invisible. I looked down and saw myself reappear. What a relief.
The room erupted in whispers. “Hey, did you see what I saw?” “Did you see what Caitlynn did?” “She totally made herself go invisible!” “Creepy!” “Look at Señora! She’s gonna faint!”
It did look as if my little- well, whatever you want to call it, illusion, I guess, had left our Señora a little woozy.
“I’m fine,” Señora said, sounding steadier than she looked. “Marisol, will you please conjugate decir for us now?”
“Dije, dijiste, dijo, dijimos…” I began. I had peeked at Ashley’s notebook while I was invisible. I knew the answer now. “Dijisteis, dijeron.” I finished triumphantly. Then I sat back in my seat and waited for class to continue. But the class just couldn’t get over what I’d done. I guess having one of your classmates, who you might classify in the “invisible” group at school actually go invisible wasn’t something you’d see every day.
And then there was this whole deal with the wishing. Did this mean that whatever I wished for would come true? I decided to experiment one more time. “I wish everyone would just forget this ever happened,” I whispered.
The result was quite satisfactory. Girls whispering in the back suddenly asked, “What were we even talking about, anyway?” Señora asked me to conjugate decir again. Of all the Spanish verbs, decir is going to be the only one I’ll ever remember. But then again, all I have to do is wish that I could speak Spanish, and I wouldn’t have to worry about it. I could get used to this wish girl thing.
“So, you’re telling me that whatever you wish for comes true?” Sandry was asking me incredulously at lunch the next period.
“Yes! I’m not kidding you! I went invisible in front of the whole Spanish class, Cassandra, just by wishing.”
“Don’t call me Cassandra!” Sandry demanded. “Then how come no one is talking about it?”
“I wished they’d all forget,” I answered simply.
“Sure,” she said sarcastically.
“Sandry, you’ve got to believe me!” I pleaded. “Come on; ask me to wish for anything! I dare you!”
“Oh…all right. Wish that Peter Kurten would ask me out,” Sandry said with a smug smile on her face. Peter Kurten was only the most popular guy in the school, and Sandry’d had a crush on him since, like, forever.
“Okay. I wish that Peter Kurten would ask Sandry Jenkins out,” I said, and waited for Peter to come over to our table. Nothing happened.
“See, I told you. Don’t you lie to me, Caitlynn Grey. I don’t lie to you.”
Maybe I’d already lost my power.
Or maybe Señora was so boring I’d actually fallen asleep and dreamt the whole thing.