In the Lakeland Kingdom, King Stefano and his parliament decreed a progress initiative, a competition of sorts, to bring about change for the betterment of the nation. Any citizen is able to enter by mailing a series of forms with background information and idea pitches to the capital. Of the thousands of applicants, one participant will be chosen from each of the twelve regions composing the great kingdom. Those chosen, referred to as ‘The Elite’, will then reside in the palace for an undetermined amount of time and take part in the initiative.
I take my time walking home today. It’s going to be a while before I can do so with such ease and peace again.
I’ve been chosen. My summons to the capital merely indicated that of all the entries from our region, I, Irene Charles, was selected to be the representative.
I pick up today’s paper before heading inside. There’s no doubt that my name, along with the others chosen from the 11 remaining regions, has been printed; maybe even a photo or two attached.
I refrain from looking at it just yet, why freak myself out by checking out the competition early.
“I’m home.” I say to the empty house; force of habit. Both my parents work, and despite the dual income, we aren’t as well off as those who belong to the more prosperous regions.
I head upstairs to message my bestie, Bianca. We have plans to spend the evening together as it will be my last before the car comes to pick me up and take me to the capital in the morning.
You coming or what? I type.
On my way, girl. Issues with Dalton, fill you in later. She writes back.
Boyfriend troubles, of course. Though I have to give credit where it’s due – this was her longest relationship yet.
“I’m home.” I hear my mother say downstairs.
“I’ll be down in a sec to help with dinner!” I call back while typing my response.
Why am I not surprised.
You’re lucky you don’t have to deal with this. She writes back
Are you being genuine, or teasing me for my lack of a love life? I say.
Both. She types back.
We exchange a few more words before I log off and head downstairs.
To my surprise, mom is already done cooking. I must’ve chatted longer than I’d thought.
She hasn’t even changed out of her work attire yet. “How do you do it?” I say. “Simple.” She replies. “I’m the mom.”
“No matter what happens, your father and I are proud.” She says as we start to eat. “The whole region will be rooting for you.” She adds when I don’t say anything.
“I know.” I say with a sigh. News about The Elite will be published in the nation’s newspaper every week. Though I’m thrilled at the prospect of pitching my ideas and potentially bringing change to the nation, I’m terrified of making a fool of myself somehow.
“And I know you will be residing within the confines of the palace walls… but I checked out the list of names of the chosen ones from the other regions, and there are quite a few guys. Since you will all be residing in the same area… make sure you practice safe se…”
I nearly choked on my food. “Mom, stop.” I say cutting her off. “I am going to be under immense stress. I doubt I’ll have time to fraternize… with my competition no less.”
“That kind of environment is one with all the more reason for you to seek comfort from someone… and besides I wouldn’t be a mom if I didn’t warn you regardless.” She says with a laugh before returning to her meal.
“Ok, I’ve heard enough.” I say, rushing to clear my dishes and be away from this conversation. Last thing I needed was advice regarding intimacy from my mom.
I let my thoughts wander in an unnecessarily long shower before changing. Since my announcement came in the mail a week ago, I’ve been oddly calm to say the least, I don’t think the reality of it has set in yet… Just as I finished freshening up – the doorbell rang. About time Bianca got here.
Thanks for reading! I know, I know… a new story? When I have so many others I need to finish. I promise I will, eventually. If you are curious as to where this arose from, check out the update I posted in the updates page. I’m kind of nervous but excited to get back into writing. I forgot how much time it takes to create a story. Feel free to let me know what you thought! Take care,