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RaDiOdOrK
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Gender: Female
Location: Australia

Chapter Six- At The Seams

Daniel stormed into the house after dropping Rupert at the airport, mystery gift in hand. Rupe had insisted he not open it until he was home.

He placed it delicately down on the desk, considering it warily. He could think of very few gifts that his friend would present him with that he would think fondly of after unwrapping it.

Sighing in annoyance at his own procrastination, he readily lifted back the light blue paper and admired the gift.

He smiled absent-mindedly at the carefully framed memory, the long forgotten photograph bringing back what he’d recently put out of mind.

It was their first day on set; Daniel, Rupert and Tom holding an awkward pose, swarmed beneath their new robes and looking unnecessarily clean. Daniel remembered fighting Marcia back as she forced herself at his hair with scissors, and the intense irritation he’d suffered at the make-up products he was slathered with.

He set the frame down angrily, becoming consciously aware of the reason Rupert chose to wait until he was out of sight before giving him the photo; he knew Dan wouldn’t take it well.

The tiny inscription down the bottom read ‘Remember-Only the beginning’ , and Dan scowled, grabbing his drumsticks and heading downstairs.

Sweat began to pool on his heated body as he slammed his feet and hands down in symmetry, a disjointed, angry beat sounding at the control of his fists and flushed imagination.

He’d taken up lessons over a year ago as a coping mechanism for his understandably high level of anxiety. He rarely played any more; whenever he needed release it always seemed too early in the morning or too late at night for the fierce tune.

He finally lifted his head back, opening his eyes as he gulped in breath, his hair falling into his face and clashes of cymbals still filling his ears. He set down his sticks just in time to hear the phone ring. Knowing Alan was in no state to contact the outside world, he picked up the receiver with a breathy ‘Ello?’

‘So I got my CDs confiscated, and I thought to myself, what would Daniel Radcliffe do with no music?’

Daniel grinned as Jhokai’s soothing tone filled his ears. ‘Make his own.’

‘Oh you play?’

He nodded to no one in particular. ‘Badly’

She hummed thoughtfully, Daniel could almost see the amused look on her face.

‘What made you call?’

‘Well-’ she paused dramatically, tapping the mouthpiece with her fingers. ‘We’re allowed one private call a week and I reckon I’ve saved up at least a hundred.’

‘So I’m just here to waste your time and call allowance?’

‘Precisely.’

Realisation came over him suddenly. ‘How did you get my number?’

Her pause was longer this time. ‘Her name is Marcia I believe. Apparently she knows you?’

Daniel’s voice lapsed for a moment. ‘You spoke to her?’

She cleared her throat casually. ‘Or something.’

Daniel pulled off his sweaty t-shirt and searched for his shoes. ‘Wait right there!’ He clicked off the handset, ran to change and prayed that Chris was willing to give up his lunch break for a favour.


~

Dan watched his mother tentatively from the doorway. She sat on her bed, reaching forward for her handbag, which was far out of her reach. She eyed the help buzzer hesitantly, before struggling forward again in desperation.

Dan entered the room swiftly and placed Marcia’s bag on her lap. She heaved a sigh of relief.

‘Show-off.’

He sat beside her. ‘Why didn’t the doctor call us?’

Marcia began rummaging through her possessions, grinning to herself as she pulled out her cellphone, and cursed as she realised the battery was dead.

‘They did. Apparently you and your father have become incapable of answering a telephone since I left.’

‘Oh.’ He looked down dismally. Jhokai had been wrong about his mother being happy to see him. ‘So how are you feeling?’

She put her things down heavily, and awkwardly turned to face him. ‘Not feeling. Thinking.’

He shifted uncomfortably, avoiding her eyes. Even in a hospital robe, she still made him nervous.

‘Do you realise, Daniel, what’s been in set in stone for the Radcliffe name?’ She moved closer, her vivid stare never faltering. ‘A failed actor, a cripple and an alcoholic.’

He cocked his head to the side in question. ‘How’d you know about dad-‘

‘Oh please. Your father has been on the edge for years and I’m quite sure this pushed him over it. He can’t handle any morsel of responsibility.’

Daniel nodded but said nothing. Alan had become less and less of an admirable figure as he’d grown up.

‘And I’ll be damned if I have to sit back in a hospital bed and watch it all fall apart.’ She practically spat the words and Dan slunk back into his chair, feeling pathetic.

‘I was allowed one phone call this morning.’ She sounded unimpressed. ‘Knowing the doctor had already tried you, I called a few out-of-date business partners. They were uneasy about helping me out so I was forced to negotiate.’

Daniel gave a small smile. Marcia was a fierce woman and he’d never heard the words negotiate or discuss pass her lips.

‘You’re going back to work Daniel. As far as I know the cast has been contacted and the crew are working on setting up a location for filming.’

He looked to his mother is disbelief. It was unlike her to even break into a sweat for him usually, let alone offer a second chance.
‘That simple?’

She narrowed her eyes. ‘Nothing is simple about it Daniel. If the public rejects this there will be hundreds of angry business people out of pocket. I ask for perfection. Nothing less.’

He was speechless, which wasn’t unusual when in the presence of his mother. With nothing more to say he got up to leave. He had a photograph to look at and a friend to call.

Old Post Feb 6th, 2006 11:49 AM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

OMG that was so GOOD!!!!!!!!!!!! AWESOME!!!!!!!!!loved it so much


__________________

Take what you can from
your dreams, make them
as real as anything
-Dave Matthews

Old Post Feb 6th, 2006 09:48 PM
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hardcorewitch99
Junior Member

Gender: Female
Location: anywhere but where i am

its outrageous......so strong...but kinda morbid and upsetting..i like that part


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aren't you special..on your high horse..so perfect..pretty...too bad you've got the IQ of a goldfish and the personality of a rock

Old Post Feb 11th, 2006 05:36 PM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

i liked it a lot lol. saddness plays a great role in this story. Fits relli well.


__________________

Take what you can from
your dreams, make them
as real as anything
-Dave Matthews

Old Post Feb 11th, 2006 05:47 PM
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RaDiOdOrK
Member

Gender: Female
Location: Australia

Thankyou my dears.. here's more smile

Chapter Seven- Action (Or Something Like It)



He wasn’t quite sure where he was, but it was the most beautiful five a.m. Daniel had experienced in a long time.

‘Rupert and Thomas?’ A young set-hand called out to the group, a little unsure. Rupe gave Daniel a quick pat on the back and followed the girl, looking a little unnerved.

His schedule was double booked now that it has been decided to film both the fifth and sixth movies together. It was a relief to be filming without Marcia eyeing him sceptically from behind the camera man, he could finally relax back into Harry’s life, which was equally as miserable as his own, but at least held some aspect of adventure.

‘We have ten minutes.’ Emma awkwardly handed him a breakfast bar while struggling miserably with her robes.

‘I swear these’ve gotten smaller since last movie..’

‘We’ve all grown, Em.’

She sighed, giving up. ‘Don’t I know it! I have to be re-fitted tomorrow, I’m growing in all the wrong places.’

Daniel turned away. Emma had put on weight since Goblet of Fire, but no one was about to agree with her, as she’d also developed somewhat of an attitude.

‘Where’s Marcia?’

‘You didn’t hear?’

She shook her head, concern evident. Daniel briefly explained the last month of activity, trying his best not to evoke sympathy.

‘So next time she’ll be on set, it’ll be in a wheel-chair… And I doubt she’ll leave Leavesden.’

Her expression dropped into something resembling remorse, but they were quickly rushed in front of the cameras, Dan taking a deep breath and grasping everything Harry Potter.

~

The little girl spun around in a circle, admiring her outfit.

Her tiny fingers were neatly painted with black shimmering nail polish, her white, frail hair pinned back with dark feathers; and her once-light hospital gown was tie dyed with rings of black and purple.

Jhokai clapped in approval, summoning Mindy closer and slipping a thick string of pearls over her head; the final touch.

‘Mindy…? Jhokai!’ A young nurse stepped into the room heatedly, picking up the little girl with one protective sweep. ‘What do you think this place is?’

Jhokai set down the bottle of polish and fell casually into her arm chair. ‘I could tell you a lot of things I think about this place. Chances are you wouldn’t approve a single one of them’

The nurse set Mindy down, still grasping her hand. ‘Well you’re seventeen next week Jhokai, you’ll be moving out of the children’s ward, so I hope you’ve made the best of it.’ She turned to leave and Jhokai called after her.

‘I certainly have, wait ‘til you see what I did to the rest of them.’

She smiled smugly to herself, but then slowly came to the realisation that she hadn’t conquered anyone. Changing wards meant that things were going to be different again. It meant she was another step closer to growing up, and leaving here, but she had nowhere to go.

Instead of mulling over the matter, she slammed her door shut, mentally planning her next attack to get back her confiscated CDs.

~

Daniels finger brushed over the lift buttons with barely a glance. His mother’s new home had become his second; and before she’d woken up, he’d actually preferred the environment to watching his father drown himself at their house.

The fettuccini was beginning to burn his fingers as he stepped out into the hall. It was a small price to pay for a short and pleasant visit. Marcia instantly announced her detest for hospital food on her first meal, meaning he was required to make frequent visits with meals. He overheard the doctor joking about putting her back on the tube, and had silently agreed.

‘Hey Mum.’

‘Oh! Daniel, you’re here.’ She eyes the container and he placed it smugly in her lap.

‘It’s still hot.’

‘How was filming?’ Her voice still held a stern tone.

‘As good as ever. We finished up early actually.’

She nodded, obviously pleased. ‘I’ve been meaning to ask you-‘

Daniel eyed the closed door longingly.

‘- There’s a girl who visits. Didn’t care for her much at first, but she was relentless and I actually enjoy her coming now.’

Daniel remembered their phone call a short while back. ‘Jhokai?’

Marcia nodded, sporadically stabbing the pasta. ‘Yes. She wouldn’t happen to be an ulterior motive would she? The doctor said you visited often.’

Daniel gritted his teeth. It was fair enough for his mother to be bitter, considering her state, but to assume everyone else possessed the same ill-feeling was just selfish of her. He kept his cool like so many times before, and stood up to leave.

‘I’ll tell her you like her visiting.’

With that he left, the heat still creeping up into his cheeks. He still had one more thing to drop off.

He opened the doors to find Mindy standing alone, with her usual sullen expression. Black make-up was smudged around her eyes and she wore an oversized guest robe.

She simply turned to watch him walk into the Burns unit; and Daniel didn’t even attempt a greeting this time.


‘What’

Daniel sighed inwardly.

‘And to think I expected you to cheer me up.’

She scoffed, still not turning away from the wall decorations she was tearing down.

He dropped a folder of CDs on her bed, getting her attention for the first time. A light smile played on her lips but she turned away again.

‘Sorry. Drum kit didn’t fit in the car.’

Jhokai sealed a small box shut. ‘You’ve preserved my sanity Daniel.’

He shook his head, looking around the walls. ‘What’s left of it anyway. What’re you doing?’

Before she could answer his cell began to sound. After a quick yes and no conversation he turned to leave.

‘See you soon Jhokai.’

Her face fell as she followed him to the door. Not wanting to tell him she needed to talk, she called out the first thing that came to her mind as he left down the hall.

‘It’s my birthday next week!’

He turned, still walking, and smiled broadly at her. ‘I won’t forget.’

Old Post Feb 12th, 2006 04:24 AM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

THAT WAS AWESOME DUDE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


__________________

Take what you can from
your dreams, make them
as real as anything
-Dave Matthews

Old Post Feb 12th, 2006 04:15 PM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

but im still waiting for your other story SHE LOVES ME NOT but ok cant wait for more


__________________

Take what you can from
your dreams, make them
as real as anything
-Dave Matthews

Old Post Feb 12th, 2006 04:17 PM
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RaDiOdOrK
Member

Gender: Female
Location: Australia

Yeah I gotta write the last chapter wink Than I'll post it up.. and that's the end!

Old Post Feb 13th, 2006 07:34 AM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

Awesome i love your stories so much they are so creative!!!!!!! love


__________________

Take what you can from
your dreams, make them
as real as anything
-Dave Matthews

Old Post Feb 13th, 2006 09:30 PM
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RaDiOdOrK
Member

Gender: Female
Location: Australia

Ta dear smile

Chapter Eight- Boxes, Beads, Birthdays, Broken

Never had Daniel seen such a severe glare on that small a face. Mindy angled her body to face him as he walked passed the children’s ward and gratefully stepped into the open lift doors.

He grinned at the ’Already Disturbed’ sign that hung on Jhokai’s door handle and opened it cautiously, surprised to find she hadn’t unpacked her new room; with no one in sight.

‘Marco?’ he called tentatively.

‘Polo’ a muffled answer came from the floor.

He snickered quietly, setting her present down on the highset bed.

‘You’re wasting your birthday hours’

‘I accidentally packed myself’

He grinned broadly. ‘Marco’

‘Polo’

Daniel flipped open all the unsealed boxes, approaching one in the corner with arms outstretched. Before he could reach for the cardboard lid, Jhokai’s sprung out effervescently and her slender arms easily found their way around his neck, pulling him down into the rubble.

Her skirt flew back to reveal black tights, and Daniel saw the skirt material was none other than thick strips of vibrant ‘birthday’ ribbon sewn together and cut knee-length; gently rustling as she smoothed it down in it’s many colours.

Easing himself back upright, he raised his eyebrow, reaching for the small box he’d placed on her bed, suddenly nervous.

‘You didn’t!’ Jhokai scolded him lightly, eyeing the box and holding out her hand regardless.

‘I know..’ Dan lowered his gaze. ‘Now you have to pretend you like it.’

She slipped the ribbon off the minute box, and set it down on the bedcover, deciding her skirt had enough. Her shoulders drooped slightly and her face softened in awe as she lifted the well crafted necklace from its cushion.

‘It’s sort of a replacement...’ Dan trailed off, stepping back a little in anticipation.

The string held light-reflecting crystal, metallic steel and polished wooden beads arranged in a pattern, with the name Jhokai spelled out in equally as mismatching decorations.

She turned around and he fumbled with the tiny clasp for a moment before sealing the gift.

She smiled up to him with gentle brown eyes. ‘I love it. I’m not pretending.’

There was a small silence in which Daniel put his next words together. ‘Well I wanted to give you something else. I have the day off so I thought you’d like to go somewhere?’

‘With you? Outside? People will gawk at us.’

Daniel looked down to her skirt and bare feet but decidedly said nothing. Instead shaking his head and leading her out of the room.


She took a deep breath as she stepped outside the foyer doors, taking in the sights. Daniel, a few steps ahead and reaching for the car door turned back and watched her questioningly.

‘I haven’t left in a while. Feels good.’ She smiled as she stepped passed him into the open vehicle door.

Instead of donning a seatbelt, Jhokai chose to lean forward, switching her interest between the city, through the front glass, and their driver, Chris.

‘Can I wear your hat?’

Chris smiled into the rear-view mirror at Dan. ‘Are you the driver?’

Jhokai shook her head.

‘Traditionally the passenger wears a seatbelt.’

She scoffed and returned her gaze to the road. ‘Fine. We’ll negotiate. You tell me all Daniel’s dirty secrets, and I promise to wear a seatbelt.’

Chris didn’t try to hide his laugh. ‘Did you want to hear about the times he’s had to get dressed in the car because his mother’s impatient, or shall I tell you how you’re the first girl he’s ever had in the backseat?’

Jhokai bit her bottom lip, hiding a grin; before sitting back silently and clicking her seatbelt on, signifying that Chris had, in fact won.

A short time later they slowed to a halt.

‘Here we are then!’ Chris leaned back in the bench seat and winked at Jhokai. ‘And a very happy birthday to you little lady.’

~

‘I don’t understand’ Jhokai stared innocently around the enormous studio, a glint of mischief already apparent in her eyes.

Daniel had expected this sort of response. ‘Well.’ He took a breath, stepping closer to her ‘the hospital seemed too boring, public is out of the question and you are the last person I’d ever take out for lunch.’

She gave him an appreciative grin. ‘So instead we run a rampage through an empty studio in Harry Potter costumes while you try to find me?’

Daniel hesitated. ‘Well, no actually..’
But with her last words Jhokai had already taken off, turning into the first closed-off set; her foot steps clearly audible as they ricocheted off the walls of the Great Hall, skirt streaming behind her in a mass of colours.

Without a second thought, Dan took off running, glad that the crew were on location today, and that the interior studio was well and truly finished.

A short while later, he remained still very much alone. A light vapour had settled over his body from the heat, dampening his shirt and hair.

‘I give up!’ He called lamely up to the massive ceiling.

There was no reply. Silence burned in his ears and he felt frustration rising in his chest, along with the uncomfort that someone was watching him, namely Jhokai.

He sauntered into the side greenhouse which housed a number of massive, ancient trees used for indoor filming, and sat beneath a central trunk, resting his head back against its rough surface.

‘Do you need a hint?’ Jhokai appeared next to him, equally as flushed.

‘Please.’ Daniel puffed. She said nothing and he turned to her with a light smile. ‘Happy Birthday Jhoky.’

She dropped her head to his shoulder, defeated. ‘Very happy. Thankyou Daniel.’

Without warning a small hissing sounded and they were both sprayed with a gentle mist as the sprinklers delivered to the small forest. Daniel was grateful for the coolness.

He looked over to her; taking steady breaths and blinking as water droplets formed on her eyelashes and trickled down her porcelain skin. Without a second thought, his hand found its way to her chin as he leaned in, fixated on her gaze, and pressed his mouth to her lips.

He leaned away, his mouth moist from the rain that coated them, and watched as her face turned from a questioning state to an almost frightful expression.

She eased away and an ounce of regret stabbed Daniel fiercely in the chest as he fought with his mind for what to say.

Unblinking, her skin began to pale and jagged breaths racked her body.

‘Jhokai?’ Daniel reached out to her but her hand caught his before it made contact and held it with iron force as she struggled for oxygen.

Panic starting to consume his own body, he fumbled with his cell phone and called an ambulance, hating himself with every breath she fought for.

Old Post Feb 19th, 2006 05:46 AM
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RaDiOdOrK
Member

Gender: Female
Location: Australia

tick tick tick

Old Post Feb 24th, 2006 02:31 PM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

OMG my hands were like clinched to my hair. That's so scary i want to know what happens next. Oh and i new they were going to kiss hahahahahaha. lol ok im weird lol


__________________

Take what you can from
your dreams, make them
as real as anything
-Dave Matthews

Old Post Feb 25th, 2006 06:12 PM
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RaDiOdOrK
Member

Gender: Female
Location: Australia

Hee. Here's more.

Chapter Nine- Meeting the Family



Dan was starting to hate hospital benches. Every time he found himself waiting on one for more then ten minutes, something bad was happening to someone he cared about.

Every doctor that exited Jhokai’s room glanced down at him and continued walking. As determined that he was not to run away from her this time, he found the notion of actually stepping into the room and looking at what he’d done, mortifying.

He had waited forever for a hospital vehicle to arrive at the studio. He attempted to relax her, hold her down, soothe her until help arrived but he knew it wasn’t doing any good. Her breathes were raspy and drawn out, as she lost control of herself and remained in a seizure-like state, with quivering limbs until help arrived. He did notice though, that much like the first time he saw her have an attack, she never once lost eye contact. Her frightened gaze bore right through him, as if she was trapped inside the whole commotion, as if her body had taken her prisoner.

~~

‘Daniel are you even listening?’

Dan turned away from the television holding an arm full of china plates and tried to remember what his mother had instructed him to do.

Marcia heaved an exasperated sigh and stepped swiftly over, awkwardly snatching the chinaware and shooting him a vicious look.

‘I should have done it on my own in the first place. At least make sure your father is getting himself dressed, I don’t have time for that. And change your tie, it looks awful.’

Daniel was getting sick of Alan being referred to as ‘your father’, as if Marcia had nothing to do with him anymore. He found that idea slightly unsettling.

He ripped off his red satin tie and searched through his rack, deciding on a navy blue number. He struggled with the silk around his neck while glancing into his parents’ bathroom, relieved to find his father dressed and gently rinsing the shaving foam off his face.

Marcia could still be heard downstairs, over the television, he noticed, reprimanding him for not helping out and being more organised when they were having ‘very important guests who will be deciding his future’.

He was usually pretty savvy when it came to impressing agents and the like. They were old partners of his mother who had continued casting on more of a global scale, and he knew all the fuss Marcia was making was due to the fact that she wanted them to know she was still successful without them.

He pulled the laces tight on his second shoe and stepped forward to check his appearance, when an almost deafening and endless sound of shattering glass made him stop short.

‘Mum?’

He knew there would be no response. Despite the fact that Alan had been a further twenty metres down the hall, he had somehow made it to Marcia first.

She sat on the floor by the dining table, eyes flittering to remain open, and cradling the left side of her torso. She had gripped the table cloth for support as she’d fallen and the entire setting lay in pieces around her, the corner of the lace cloth still clutched in her right fingers. The bottle of red wine has spilled over the tiles and was soaking into her dress and had already begun staining the lounge room carpet.

Alan had seemed almost as dumbstruck as Daniel, but appropriately came to his senses. ‘Daniel, I think she’s having a stroke, I need you to call an ambulance alright? Just tell them what happened.’

His voice was shaking and it took Dan a few moments to register and finally tear his eyes away to call for help.


~~~

Daniel didn’t realise he had tears smudged across his cheeks until a nurse had stooped in front of him, giving him a concerned look.

‘It’s alright. You can see her now.’

He shakily stepped in the room and looked down to find Jhokai’s eyes very much open. She didn’t look at him, but moaned lightly in her hazy state of consciousness.

All her unpacked boxes had been stacked, out of the way in a corner. ‘She wouldn’t like that’, he found himself thinking.

He stepped over and rested his hands on the rails that had been erected on the side of the bed.
Feeling tears of guilt beginning to swell behind his eyes again, he mumbled an ‘I’m sorry’ and turned to leave once more.

‘Daniel?’ Her voice came strongly from where she lay.

‘If you leave, don’t come back.’ Despite her state, Dan noticed her eyes held a soothing serenity.

‘I don’t want to have to say goodbye again…’

Daniel felt a pang of uneasiness. Her words, even though undoubtedly influenced by sedatives, had touched on an emotion he’d been hiding.

He remained silent, waiting for her eyelids to fall shut as he guilty stepped towards the exit.

A brightly coloured card in the wastepaper basket caught his eye on the way out. Without a thought, he reached out and quickly studied the glittering picture on the front, and gently flipped it open.

There was a generic, typed birthday message inside titled ‘To Jhokai’ , but that was the least of his focus. Underneath the tiny Hallmark paragraph lay two small, handwritten words that made the little breath he had left stop short.

‘Love Dad’.

Old Post Feb 26th, 2006 09:49 AM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

wait so when Daniel was waiting to see Jhokai he was just thinking about when His mom just started getting sick and then he went to see Jhokai. What exactly happened to her? Why doesn't she want him to come back? I'm confused I like it very very very very very much but im confused. Fill me in


__________________

Take what you can from
your dreams, make them
as real as anything
-Dave Matthews

Old Post Feb 26th, 2006 08:30 PM
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RaDiOdOrK
Member

Gender: Female
Location: Australia

You've confused me!! Basically he was sitting outside waiting to see her and had a flashback or whatever to when his mother had a stroke. Then he went into see Jhokai.. and she pretty much said she doesn't like saying goodbye- I suppose you'll find out later smile Obviously she has lost people she cared about once before.

Hope it's clear!

Old Post Feb 27th, 2006 03:01 AM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

OOOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! Ok its clear.lol


__________________

Take what you can from
your dreams, make them
as real as anything
-Dave Matthews

Old Post Feb 27th, 2006 10:08 PM
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RaDiOdOrK
Member

Gender: Female
Location: Australia

Chapter Ten- Yellow on the Inside

Jhokai awoke once more in her cold, sterile prison. Her chest burned and she gasped for air, gripping the bed sheets that interlaced her fingers.

The elderly nurse leaned forward and gently lay a cold, damp cloth onto the girl’s lap; Jhokai gratefully pressing it to her chest. It was a regular routine but still hit just as hard every single morning.

The nurse left without a word and Jhokai stepped out of her bed and stumbled into the bathroom, peering into the mirror.

Seventeen looked just as miserable.

She whipped a lightly coloured kaftan around her body and pulled it tight with a strand of braided leather, shoving back her unkempt hair in defeat and stepping back to her room.

Daniel startled her. ‘You’re early’

‘It’s eleven o’clock’ he replied shortly.

‘You’re still early.’

He sighed, sitting in an arm chair and pulling a small, creased birthday card from his pocket.

Jhokai panicked a moment. She hated keeping secrets, but realised if no one ever asked her about anything, then they weren’t considered secrets.

‘You don’t waste any time, do you?’

Dan kept his solemn expression. ‘I figured you’d wasted enough time for the both of us.’

He held up the card from her father, ‘Thought this might be a good time to start asking questions.’

She folded her arms, staring at him, motionless, her stubbornness taking over. ‘Why do you care?’ She threw the accusing question at him with an unwavering tone.

Daniel rose and stepped towards her. He could feel his temper rising as her lack of co-operation. As much as he hated his mood’s unpredictability, he thought this would be a good moment to use it to his advantage.

‘You know what Jhokai? At first, I didn’t care. I was just interested by this girl who had no history to speak of and covered up her misery with beads and ribbon.’

Jhokai still eyed him with a challenging glare.

‘But now I need you to tell me something.’

She exhaled heavily and dropped into her beanbag, Daniel watching on with persistence.

‘I wanted to know why the only people who come and leave your room are holding syringes or finger paintings. I want to know where you’re from, why you’re here, and mostly..’ he trailed off, stooping down to the floor to meet her eyes, ‘.. mostly why you ended up unconscious when I tried to.. to kiss you.’

A bout of shame crossed his face and he glanced away. Jhokai, noticing the dip in his temper, used the silence to her regain her usual self, throwing her body back dramatically and splaying her hands out on the floor.

‘I am the immaculate conception. I thrive of children’s artwork and heavy medication.’

Daniel barely smiled. ‘And the kiss?’

She sat upwards, leaning into him and offering a wry smile only inches from his face. ‘I didn’t want to get pregnant.’

He sighed again, rubbing his eyes. ‘You are impossible.’

‘The doctors tell me that everyday.’

There was a short silence in which Daniel contemplated giving up. Jhokai tugged the card delicately from his fingers. ‘I will tell you Daniel.. I will tell you who I am. As long as afterwards, you forget everything that’s said and we go get cheeseburgers.’

Daniel nodded slowly, relaxing back and following her wandering eyes.

‘I was born seventeen years ago to a woman named Echo.’

Dan shot her a disbelieving look but she nodded seriously.

‘She was a fifteen year old hippie when she gave birth to me and changed her name not long afterwards. I never found out what she was called before that, it never struck me to ask.’

She shifted uncomfortably for a moment. Daniel could tell sharing wasn’t something Jhokai did too often.

‘I managed to survive with the middle name ‘Yellow’ and a first name she created from a mantra my grandmother passed on.’

She began tracing the letters of her name into the cold tiled floor.

‘Justice Hearts Of Karma And Innocence.’

Jhokai bit her bottom lip in fondness and continued. ‘My father..’ her voice began to shake ‘he was.. not all there. But I suppose my mother wasn’t perfect either and love seemed to fuel everything at the time.’

She looked around for some sort of distraction, but there was nothing.

‘We lived in an area not far from here. The whole neighbourhood was a little… a little off-beat. Like most of the neighbours, we had no electricity. I remember the rooms being filled with candles and incense.’ She smiled again but lowered her eyes.

‘On my last day there, I remember coming out of my room to find Echo crying. The authorities had just visited to find out why her ten year old daughter had not started school yet.’

Dan shifted uncomfortably.

‘My father arrived home at the same time. He’d been out job hunting but no one seemed to be hiring him because… because he was mentally challenged. People didn’t understand him.’

A light colour filled her cheeks and she crushed the card in her fist.

‘It was the first time I had seen him angry. He didn’t like it when someone upset my mother, and that’s what started his temper.’

She looked to Daniel as if she didn’t want to say anything more, but he smiled reassuringly.

‘I hid in my room and eventually fell asleep. I only woke up because I remember being so hot.’

Emotion began to fuel her voice. ‘I went to open my door in a panic, finding it too hot to touch, so I had to use my dress. As I opened it, the entire burning frame fell onto me and I eventually passed out from the smoke.’

Jhokai traced her fingers over her stomach. ‘The burns were so deep that I couldn’t move for over three months. I just lay in hospital mourning over my mother and praying I’d never have to see my father again.’

Daniel spoke for the first time. ‘So where is he?’

She sighed, ‘The police told me he’d knocked over Echo’s candle mural in his rage. She thought she could put it out in time but she had chronic asthma and died a few days later from intense smoke inhalation. My father was deemed unfit to have a child, even thought he wasn’t a violent man. He’s in a hospital, like me, with people, like him.’

She stood, smoothing down her kaftan and stepping forward. ‘Beautiful story, no?’

Daniel only watched on in wonder and she slipped from the room and out into the hallway, only stopping to drop the card back in the bin.

Old Post Mar 2nd, 2006 02:55 PM
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iluvhp1_7
Fourth Year

Gender: Female
Location: Gryffindor Girls Dormitory

Wow. I mean there is no words to discribe it. It's so well written. Good Description. Good everything. It was and will and has been the greatest story yet. It's way better then mine. lol i love keep going


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your dreams, make them
as real as anything
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Old Post Mar 3rd, 2006 01:56 AM
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Emmy-xo
Emzilbooger

Gender: Female
Location: Canada

your story is amazing! please keep writing...I wanna know what happens next!


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* check out my Harry/Hermione story: Being With You **

Old Post Mar 8th, 2006 11:23 PM
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RaDiOdOrK
Member

Gender: Female
Location: Australia

Thankyou pretties big grin

Chapter Eleven- Show Me Midnight

Daniel stepped into his mother’s suite, feeling an uncomfortable wave of anxiety cover him. Marcia sat upright, fiercely eyeing the doctor who stood at the end of her bed, holding a frustrated look of defeat.

‘What I’m saying, Mrs Radcliffe, is that what’s best for you and your family’s well-being is that you remain in our care for a further month.’ He paused with an exasperated sigh, and noting Daniel’s cautious expression, added ‘at least.’

Marcia’s glare did not soften. ‘What I’m saying Doctor, is that I know what’s best for my own family and am quite capable of living outside a hospital. I’ve done it for over forty years.’

The doctor, quite expecting such a reply, turned to exit, muttering, ‘We’ll order you a chair’ as the door swung shut behind him.

‘And they claim to be educated’ she huffed, struggling to manually lift her right leg, but eventually letting it slump back down to the mattress.

She eyed Daniel sharply. ‘I suppose your father told you?’

He shook his head, raising another round of muttered profanity from his mother.

“I’m coming home this evening. Alan should be here shortly. And I’ve rescheduled our dinner party for tomorrow night.’

Daniel stiffened. The first dinner party was the reason Marcia was here. He still recalled the guests pulling into their driveway as the ambulance left.

‘Um, are you sure you’re feeling up to it mum?’ His query held little evidence of concern.

‘Yes and I’ll expect you and your father to be of some use this time.’ She rifled through her purse as she spoke, presenting him with a crumpled note.

‘Fetch me some lunch will you?’

He half-snatched the money and turned to leave, glad his daily visit was so abrupt. Marcia called out to him in a much chirpier tone as he pushed the door open. ‘And invite a friend will you? I don’t need the agency thinking my son’s a miserable recluse.’

Dan gave a small grin, knowing exactly who he wanted to bring.

~~

Jhokai slipped off her shoes, her heavy skirt immediately dropping to the floor; the thick lace scraping across the beige tiles as she pranced away from Daniel to explore his house.

‘So, how are you?’ He called out to her sarcastically.

‘My feet are cold’ she announced from somewhere near the kitchen, followed by a squeal of excitement, arousing Daniel’s attention.

He’d forgotten that Jhokai and his mother were well acquainted. He’d always meant to ask her, but usually resisted asking her anything as conversations led to a dead end.

He found her standing in the middle of the kitchen, a childish grin on her face as she fiddled with the bottom of an apron Marcia has obviously handed her. His mother wheeled back and forth between the dining table and stove, in mindless chatter, only pausing to rest her arms and complain a little.

His mother had forced herself to learn the techniques of her wheelchair within five minutes of getting in the door. It was all Alan could do to stop her cooking that very evening she arrived home. She even gave them both a look of loathing as they helped her out of the car.

‘Get dressed Daniel.’ His mother’s sharp voice brought him from his contented haze of watching Jhokai pottering happily around the dining table, knives and forks in hand, flowers already tucked neatly into the pocket of her apron as she imitated how Marcia had begun setting the places.

Content that Marcia was in soothing hands, and choosing to ignore the intense déjà vu feeling tugging at him, Daniel headed upstairs to dress and make sure Alan was sober enough to address the guests.

~~~

Dinner went smoothly. Daniel and Alan kept their conversation to a minimum, as instructed, and Jhokai piped up occasionally, much to Marcia’s delight; later insisting that the agents thought her to be absolutely intriguing. Much to Dan’s surprise, he found himself left with an odd pang of jealously after the remark, quickly blaming it on the fact that he’d always been an only child.

After dinner Daniel sat restlessly in the family room by the fireplace, being found a short while later by Jhokai, who smelled slightly of dishwashing liquid and bore her cheery, infectious grin.

‘Enjoying yourself?’

She nodded, sitting next to him and shivering slightly, fixing her attention on the bright sparks floating in the fireplace.

After a short moment, Dan let a yawn slip, causing Jhokai to snap her head around to see the clock.

‘It’s eleven o’clock’ she uttered.

Dan gave her a confused look. ‘Did you need to be somewhere?’

She relaxed again, sighing a little. ‘It’s just.. I never stay up late. Well, never until midnight, I mean.’

She trailed off as if this was sufficient explanation, but Dan nodded all the same.

‘Because that’s when you turn back into a pumpkin.’

She shot him a familiar roguish smile, and then returned her gaze to the light flickering in front of them.

‘Not quite. My mother was proclaimed ‘officially deceased’ at 11:59 pm. Not exactly the hour to celebrate.’

‘Not even at New Years?’

Jhokai held a solemn expression. ‘Never.’

Daniel hummed in contemplation, wrapping an arm around her shoulders and leaning into her ear. ‘One day, Jhokai, you will stay up until midnight with me.’

She gave a small smile, inching out of his grasp and climbing to her feet. ‘Not tonight, at least.’

He walked her out to the entrance and flicked on the front light. ‘Chris will take you back. Mum kept him on for the evening.’

He looked, bewildered, down at the hand she offered for him to shake, taking it slowly.

‘Tomorrow, Daniel, dinner is at my house.’

He raised an eyebrow, still gently shaking her hand. ‘Oh really?’

She gave a formal nod.

‘Is there something you’re not telling me?’

Jhokai slipped her shoes back on and stepped out under the glow on the front steps, only turning to give a coy smirk and a last word.

‘Always.’

Old Post Mar 9th, 2006 10:55 AM
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