"Okay ssalc, today we are going to learn about the human race," Miss Sing stated in a sing song live voice. This topic was one of Miss Sing's favorite to teach. All the pointless wars and the differences between races, what was there not to love?
Miss Sing smiled at her ssalc, "Does anyone know anything about the human race?" Her eyes scanned the class. "No tentacle, no wings, no hands. No one knows anything about the humans?" Her face fell a bit. This ssalc wasn't as enthusiastic as she wanted them to be. Miss Sing turned to the draob and picked up an eraser to begin to start the nossel but then she heard it. It was tiny, very tiny. But she heard it none the less. From the back of the room a very small student sighed very softly, but in such away that Miss Sing knew that the student knew something about humans.
She flipped one of her heads around to the noise, "I heard that sigh! Who made it? What do you know?" Her razor sharp eyesight saw the tiniest student she had sink lower into her seat. "Gotcha," Miss Sing chirped happily. She stalked over to the student. "So," Miss Sing smiled wide teeth gleaming like razors, "what do you know?"
Lily had seen this coming the minute the word 'humans' was written on the draob that she was going to get attention. This wasn't going to be good. Lily had held her breath, and made herself fade into the background. If she could hold her breath long enough she would just become one with her chair. When Miss Sing had turned around, Lily thought, "She didn't notice me. Thank goodness." The smallest of small relieved sighs still gave her away though.
Lily pushed herself up to look at the head that had flipped upside down in its journey to her, "I
human," Lily said tentatively.
At this news, Miss Sing hopped about on her toes, one head flopping everywhere and the other one smiling like a cat whose prey had just willingly invited itself into her home. Miss Sing had completely forgotten that her Intergalactic Foreign Exchange Student was a human. "Puurfect"! Miss Sing purred, "Then you shall present something that describes the human race next ssalc period."
Lily gulped nervously. She did not want to go home to the storm that she knew would come from this. "As long as I can stay in ssalc " Lily thought nervously, "Then I will be fine " But Lily isn't very lucky. Five seconds later the dreaded lleb gnar. She reluctantly slid away from her seat, and meandered behind her ssalc mates, though it didn't seem to matter how much time she took; she still ended up outside. Lily sighed deeply once she was out. Her solid nightmare was waiting for her. Lily wished that the shadows could hide her so that she wouldn't have to face her host sister, Nou Mou Fun.
Nou Mou Fun wasn't what Lily would call evil, but she certainly wasn't nice. And she was always getting Lily in trouble for everything; today's event would be no exception. Nou Mou advanced on Lily with a phony smile on her face.
"Sooooo," Nou Mou began, "are you going to talk about the yobs?" Nou Mou asked with fake excitement. Lily could see Nou Mou's true nature in her six eyes. She wasn't hiding anything.
Lily shook her head, "No."
Four out of six of Nou Mou's eyes rose, two stayed locked onto Lily's, "Fine. Don't talk about the yobs, but that was the only thing that was going to keep you out of trouble."
Lily watched Nou Mou's legs as she ran from her and back to the house; it didn't take long. Just three strides. When Nou Mou reached the door of the house she turned around quickly and grinned evilly; Lily knew that it things were not going to be comfortable at home. Lily sighed heavily and reluctantly began to walk the distance from the school to her temporary home. She dragged and shuffled her feet in an attempt to take as much time as she could so she wouldn't have to immediately face the wrath of her host mother. But she still got home too soon.
Lily walked through the tiny door that her host family made by kicking a hole into their bigger door. Her host mother figured there was no sense in wasting the money for something that didn't matter in the first place. Which of course made Lily feel very welcome, as did some other things such as: her bed made out of an old pillow the size of Nou Mou's foot, her "room" which was actually the size of a small apartment back on Earth that was actually made for a god if her host family owned one, and lastly, the fact that she was not allowed to be seen with her host family at anytime just in case one of her host mother's socialite friends would happen to see her. Oh yes, her host family made Lily feel very welcome.
Lily crept slowly into the home hoping that her tiny footsteps wouldn't draw her host mother's attention. Lily's luck deserted her.
"Liiiillly"! Her host mother growled, "Why does it take you thirty minutes to get home when it only takes our dear sweet Nou Mou five minutes? And what were you thinking today?" Her host mother had three out of four of her hands placed firmly on her hips, the other one was holding a martini glass. Lily looked at her shoes trying to play dumb so that her host mother would just leave her alone.
Her host mother saw straight through it though. "Don't," she took a sip of her martini, "you even start trying to play dumb with me girl. I know exactly what you did today." She gave Lily a firm look with four out of six of her eyes the other two looked lazily at the martini.
Lily shifted uncomfortably under her host mother's gaze, "I... I didn't mean to, okay?" Lily could hear the slight defiance in her voice, she hoped that her host mother wouldn't hear it.
"What was that?" Her host mother stammered, "was that defiance I heard?" She fixed Lily with a shocked look. "Do you think you have any right to defy me, girl?"
Lily did not answer but she did look directly into her "host mother's" eyes. What she saw there was more than just dislike. It was a combination of disgust and disinterest. Lily then began to shake her head slowly, very slowly. She couldn't believe her host mother or her host family for that matter. She couldn't believe that she was here being the one looked at with disgust. All she could do in the situation was shake her head.
Of course her host mother mistook Lily shaking her head as a form of submission, "That's right, girl, you have no right to defy me. Now go to your room. I have guests coming over and I don't want you to stink up the place." She took another sip at the martini.
Lily did not argue. She didn't want to argue. In fact she wanted nothing more than to be away from her host mother and host family. Lily started to walk off to her room but for the first time since she arrived on this planet she did it with a more purposeful stride. After the first seed of defiance had sprouted Lily felt a new sense of confidence in everything she did, even if this everything was just walking to her room. Lily even felt the urge to turn back and smirk at Nou Mou. Nothing, and no one could bother her any more.
When Lily had reached the door to the back yard which would lead to her god house she heard Nou Mou complain, "Mooomm, Lily just smirked at me." But before her host mother could say anything Lily had already reached the god house and locked the door.
Lily wanted to laugh and cry at the same time. She couldn't believe that she had just defied her host mother. It felt great. Lily wasn't ready to let this feeling go either. The feeling was equivalent to someone giving her a deep massage and then letting her eat all of her favorite foods and then some. It was the happiest feeling that she had in a very long time.
Lily sank into her bed. "I can't believe I did that," she said while looking up to the ceiling. "I can't believe," she paused, her heart beat racing, "I did that." Her smile was wide and for the first time since she had stepped on to the planet, she mirrored the girl who was in the photos that covered her walls. She in a state of excitement grabbed one of the pictures down from the wall. Her favorite picture in fact and she studied it. Her parents stood around her smiling down on her as if they could never be prouder. Her dad had one arm looped around her shoulder in a hug and her mom was smiling while tears of joy made her mascara smear down her cheeks. And Lily. Lily was in the middle of her parents with a huge toothy smile. She was holding an award. It was the one that said she would be on her way to Duum.
Lily still loved the photo, just hated what happened afterwards. She wanted nothing more than to go home. To get back to the parents who loved and cared for her. Back to her life where she could be herself and be free from the aliens of Duum and back to the aliens in her comic books.
"Hey ecaf-beewd, mom wants me to tell you that you better not think up anything funny for that project. Otherwise she'll starve you," Nou Mou paused already forgetting her mother's words, "Or something like that," she mumbled a bit, "Oh! Wait, no it was 'or I will send her back' yeah that was it," Nou Mou stated more to herself because she was unsure if Lily was even listening or not.
Lily's heart quickened once more. "Oh yeah! Whatever then," Lily yelled back to Nou Mou hoping she would go away thinking that Lily was going to do exactly what she was told.
"Good," Nou Mou stated triumphantly believing she had won. Her mother would be proud of her which put a smile on Nou Mou's face. She strode happily into the kitchen telling her mother the good news of Lily actually behaving. They couldn't have been more wrong. Inside the god house Lily plotted ways to make her project as attention grabbing as she could.
Lily began drafting idea. After idea. After idea. After idea. But nothing came to her. Nothing shouted out, "I am a human living with aliens who hate me, I want off this planet now!"
"Ugh," Lily exhaled dramatically, "This is useless! I can't even properly come up with an idea to get myself kicked off this bloody planet!" She kicked her dresser multiple times in frustration. Each time she kicked it something was knocked looser, and looser, and looser, until a drawer popped open suddenly.
Inside the drawer were two leather bound book, one slightly larger than the other one. Lily picked up both of the books with care as if they were lost treasures of hers that she never hoped to see again. Inside each cover was a note written to her from her parents on Earth.
"'To document your many fantastic and amazing adventures on Duum, love Mom and Dad'," Lily read out loud her eyes tearing up slightly to see her parents handwriting again. She missed them so much that it hurt her chest. She read the inscription again. Then once more for good measure. And then suddenly...
"I'VE GOT IT!"
She took hold of the smaller of the two books and flipped to the first blank page, she hunched her back over the page protecting it in case anyone were to walk in while she was writing and began.
This journal was supposed to be about my "fantastic and amazing adventures" here on Duum. Ha. Sorry Mom and Dad, but they weren't fantastic or amazing or in anyway an adventure. In fact, I hate it here and the saddest part? It is exactly like Earth was for me.
Do you remember all those bullies? That is my host family here.
Do you remember that strange teacher I had in high school who made do strange projects? That's Miss Sing for you.
And do you remember why I wanted to leave Earth in the first place? I wanted to escape all of that. It is just my luck that I happen to end up in a place that is the exact mirror to Earth. Except there is one difference here that makes this planet more unbearable than Earth.
I don't have you two, telling me that everything will eventually turn out, that I will one day be a famous scientist that discovers the cure for AIDs or cancer.
I don't have you guys. I miss you so much.
I just want to go home.
Lily Lucinda Ife