This page contains the full episode. If you wish to read information about the episode, visit the ''''No Matter How Hard You Try, I'll Always Belong In The Sky page.
A hush surrounded the dry, empty air. In the distance ahead, Winter noticed a beautiful cream-white butterfly soaring through the azure, cloudless sky. A philosophical question entered the girl's mind, as she lay silently, camped next to a cemented pathway on the side of a residentially-bound road: how could this butterfly be content with simply flying around all of its life? She could not fathom an appropriate response to her question. Surely it would want something more than just fresh air, she thought to herself.
Almost any other girl would have traded their life immediately to take Winter's, had they been told they lived in a luxurious mansion, with an indoor and outdoor swimming pool; two spas; and a huge bedroom all to themself, accompanied by a huge closet full of every designer clothing item any fashionista could ever wish for. Not only did she have this, but she had a loving boyfriend, an extremely academic mind, and many other talents, with her most valuable being her large vocal range and her brilliant piano-playing techniques. What more could a girl want? would be the response from a typical teenage girl. But to Winter, all of these meant nothing if she wasn't loved and appreciated by the people who she held close to her heart.
She was in a relationship with Jason, that was true, but even a magical connection like theirs had its constant bumps. Her mother neglected her, and her father was always at work, meaning he was never around at home to help her make much-needed amendments in her life. She loved her mother very much and felt close to her, but the feelings were never reciprocated, and this seemed to hurt Winter more than anything else in the world.
Prior to fleeing from Defiance, Winter’s plan had never been thought through fully. All that mattered in that moment was finding a way to get away from her troubles; to abolish all of the pain. If she’d have known how little food and water supplies she would have, perhaps she wouldn’t have left at all.
Glee club. Winter couldn’t stop herself from thinking about it. Not just the club itself, but the people, the competition, the positive vibe present in the air, the songs. Winter hadn’t sung in a while. In fact, she’d barely been talking at all. There’d been no use to; there were no needed communications. Winter had been hiding from everyone, even the unassuming whom she didn’t know. Communication had turned into something Winter was forcing herself to avoid, but deep inside, she craved for an interaction of some form. As independent as Winter had learnt to become throughout her life, having no one around was a struggle. She needed her mother, despite her neglecting ways. She needed her friends, however ignorant they may have been at times.
Forcing herself up off the ground, Winter tried to shake her thoughts off her mind. It was so very hard, though. All she wanted was somebody to talk to, to share her story with, to tell them everything. She needed help. She knew it deep down inside. But where she was going to get it from was not an easy question to answer.
Out of nowhere, Winter heard a sudden voice. It was singing. “I'm a cloud drifting by, dripping tears from the sky. I'm a snail without a shell. Leper with a golden bell.”
She turned around to see who was singing, but no one was in sight. Only a reflection of her ragged, worn-out body in the window of a home she had resided nearby to. Shivers tingled down her backside as she realized the voice was her own, deep inside her mind. “I've got nowhere to go. I'm a stray cat on the roam. Choking on a chicken bone. For a home sweet, no sweet home.”
Winter bent down and picked up her packed suitcase she’d been dragging around on her journey. She’d had enough. It was time to move on. All she wanted in that moment was to find somebody to talk to, somebody who would willingly help her solve all her problems. “For a root, for a leaf, for a branch, for a tree. For something, somebody... that reminded them of me...”
The voice became louder, and Winter noticed she was now singing through her throat, and not her mind. For a tired, traveling girl, her voice possessed a brilliant spark of energy. “Running with my roots pulled up. Caught me cold so they could cut, what there was left of love. I'm rootless. I'm rootless.”
Winter continued to sing, “Work your fingers to the bone. Building castles out of snow. I’m a nomad’s walking on. Humming to the same old song. Lower case society. Tied to no community. A kingdom without a king. With no sense of belonging.”
Winter wheeled her luggage along, taking each step cautiously, so as to not trip face-forward in the soiled side-streets. Especially considering the little quantities of food Winter had left to eat, she couldn’t afford to waste any energy, or get her clothes in a further mess. She had to move slowly. “For a root, for a leaf, for a branch, for a tree. For something, somebody... that reminded them of me...”
Winter was completely rootless; she had no settled home and social or family ties anymore. “Running with my roots pulled up. Caught me cold so they could cut, what there was left of love. I'm rootless. Running with my roots pulled up. Caught me cold so they could cut, what there was left of love. I'm rootless.”
Winter didn’t know where she was going. She would walk forever if it meant a happy ending at the end of the road. But deep inside, Winter knew that realistically, happy endings didn’t just happen. Real life was nothing like a typical fairytale.
“Running with my roots pulled up. So they could cut me free of love.”
Winter noticed the cream-white butterfly from earlier had been following her. She stopped, taking a moment to admire its beauty and perfection once again. It flew towards Winter and landed on her left hand. Then, immediately, almost as if it was trying to lead the way for the lost girl, its wings were exposed abruptly, and it flew ahead. The butterfly continued to soar, advancing towards a new beginning. Winter continued to follow the creature.
“Running with my roots pulled up. Caught me cold so they could cut, what there was left of love. I'm rootless. Running with my roots pulled up. Caught me cold so they could cut, what there was left of love. I'm rootless. I’m rootless.”
She continued, following the butterfly as she sang, “Dragging my roots through the snow. For a home sweet and no sweet home. I’ve got nowhere to go. I’m rootless. Dragging my roots through the snow. For a home sweet and no sweet home. I’ve got nowhere to go. I’m rootless. I’m rootless.”
As the song ended, the butterfly stopped moving, and rested its tired body on a thin branch of a very leafy green tree. Winter paused for a moment, watching it in awe. After a minute or two, she decided to continue traveling. Where she was headed, she still had no idea, but nevertheless she was determined to find the paradise she had dreamed of reaching. She headed down the road, and turned a few corners, but all that she saw were shops upon shops. She passed a candy store, with people brimming inside. Then, she saw a small French delicatessen. Oh, how she would have loved to go inside and purchase something. Her stomach rumbled with rage. Feed me, she heard it beg. I’m starving, it pleaded.
Further down the hustling street, Winter spotted a bakery lined with freshly-made breads, delicious-looking pastries and delicate cakes. She stopped to admire the creations, and as she stood, the smell of these delectable handmade goodies wafted through the air and up into her nostrils. The appetizing appearance and aroma of the food tempted the famished girl. For a moment, she imagined herself barging in and begging the man at the counter for a nibble. As much as she had liked to believe it, her imagination was not reality; and the food was still on display inside and not in her stomach.
Winter watched on as a woman entered the bakery with her husband and three kids. Conversation broke out between the woman and the baker at the counter. Looking in through the front window, Winter guessed the woman had asked for ciabatta, a type of flat Italian bread, guessing from the way her lips moved while she spoke. The man grabbed a paper bag and gently placed the ciabatta in the bags. The family then left the store, exchanging smiles and laughing joyfully. Oh, how Winter wanted to be one of those kids; to have a mother that loved and appreciated her, and a father that wasn’t too busy digging up coal in the mines to be around for his daughter. But most of all, Winter just wanted to eat. She had dealt with her parents for years, but living with starvation was certainly a new challenge she had never dealt with before.
A short moment later, a second family entered the bakery. This time, as the people entered, Winter snuck in behind them. She felt compelled to get a glimpse at the food. “Who’s first?” the baker said. He smiled a toothy, almost-creepy grin. The family went to step forward first, then saw Winter behind them.
“Oh, you can go first, if you’d like,” the father told Winter. “Me wife and I haven’t even decided what we’re getting yet.”
“Oh, it’s fine. I haven’t either. You can go,” Winter’s croaky, uneven voice responded.
“Okay, well, thanks,” the father replied with a smile.
“It’s fine,” Winter said, followed by a harsh cough. She felt sick. Really sick; as if vomit could come pouring out of her mouth at any moment. But luckily for Winter, it didn’t, because there was practically nothing left in her tummy to barf up anyway.
This family’s much quieter than the first, Winter thought, until she registered that the family had already left, and she was actually standing in the store all on her lonesome now, with the large, bulging eyes of the baker staring right back at her. A few coughs later, she made the decision to leave swiftly, before she accidentally spewed all over the baker’s spotless floors.
“I’m sorry, I’ve got to go,” she mumbled, then hurried off quickly.
The second family was slightly up ahead of the road. Winter followed them eagerly, gazing at their food intently. Must. Eat, her brain whispered to her. Must. Eat. Now. Then suddenly, out of nowhere, when Winter had reached the family, she found herself reaching forward and snatching the paper bag containing the loaves. When she realized what she had done, she smiled. On any given day, she would have felt immediate guilt and returned the loaves to the family, requesting for their forgiveness. In fact, on a usual day, she wouldn’t have pinched the bread to begin with; but today was different. Very different, indeed. Control over her mind was gone completely. Her hunger and thirst were taking over her.
Not knowing what to do, Winter decided to run. She’d taken the food now, there was no turning back. The family, no doubt, would have cupboards at home stacked with other items they could choose from - and she knew this because the mother wore all sorts of exquisite jewelry, kinds that only a wealthy person could afford to buy - so she didn’t feel too bad. Winter had absolutely nothing at all, and was probably about to collapse due to a lack of food, so inside her head, her actions were justified.
A deep voice suddenly bellowed some words, but Winter was completely unaware, because she had blocked all of her senses out. “Hey! Get back here, you filthy guttersnipe!” the man yelled across the street. People turned from all directions to see what the yelling was for.
“Do something!” the man howled like a wolf, looking around at people close to Winter. “Go get that druggie! She’s stolen my bread!”
Winter was slightly offended by the ‘druggie’ comment, but knew she probably did look like one. After all, her clothes had turned ragged and worn out, her hair was messy, and she was running with a stolen loaf of bread.
A woman that had just exited from a clothes store noticed the chaos occurring. She bent down, pulled off her pair of elaborately designed slippers that looked far too big for her feet, and began running after the poor girl. The man who’s bread had been stolen was shocked. This woman was faster than Usane Bolt himself. She could have won gold in the Olympics if she’d tried.
Winter, who finally took in all of the action around her, felt there was no option but to keep running. It was far too late to turn back and apologize. Wind gushed past, causing her hair to fly freely behind her. By this point, people were absolutely furious about the situation, and they began hustling together in a clump, chasing after Winter. The woman right behind Winter had the figure of a wrestler, her body bulged with muscles in every direction. This scared Winter, but it also motivated her to keep running. She darted around corners; jumping over mud puddles and trash cans, as well as avoiding squished bubblegum on the ground, and, of course, people in the way of her path.
Soon, Winter reached a dead-end. She could hear the woman’s footsteps approaching rapidly from around the corner. She had no clue how she was going to avoid trouble after all that had happened, until a sudden idea struck her. Her only choice left was to take refuge inside an abandoned city building beside her. Trying to catch her breath after running up a multitude of stairs, Winter searched around for a place to hide. She soon found an old chase, and kneeled behind it, hiding as silently as she possibly could. If the woman caught her, she’d be dead meat, for sure! She’d be sent to life in prison for robbery, or worse, be killed right there by the woman! At least that’s what Winter believed right there in that moment. The events that actually followed were nowhere near as dramatic as those Winter had concocted up in her head.
After about ten minutes of attempting to maintain a slow breathing speed whilst hiding, Winter figured out that the woman and her mob were in fact nowhere near anymore. They must’ve taken a wrong turn or given up when they realized I wasn’t out there, Winter thought. Peering through a shattered window to check no one was around, Winter slowly descended the stairs and made her way out of the old structure. Luckily for her, the dark alleyway was empty.
As relieved as Winter was, feelings of loneliness began to invade her mind, which led her to begin sobbing uncontrollably. “I want Jason! I want my friends!” she began yelling out aloud. “I want my father! And I want... I want my mother!” These last words shocked her as they erupted from her mouth. She missed everyone, and more than wanting them, she needed them. Her mother was the bane of her existence, but she still missed her dearly, and having this emotion made no sense to the girl whatsoever.
Looking down, noticing that her tears were being absorbed by the paper bag, she remembered that in spite of her hunger, she still hadn’t eaten the bread. She viciously ripped back the bag, revealing three large loaves, then began scoffing down the food. Thank you, her stomach said. She looked up at the sky, wondering whether it really was God that had been looking out for her. Whether it was God, or just the twist of fate, she wasn’t sure; but what she did know was that she owed them regardless. “Thank you so much,” she mouthed aloud, through her tears.
Once Winter had finished eating, she stood, remembering to pick up her suitcase. She continued down the path, on a journey for something, anything. As she walked, reaching the end of the road, a gleam of light shot from the sun surrounding a large building of some sort. Winter recognized it, but couldn’t make out where from. It seemed as if the butterfly she had seen much earlier had followed her the whole time. It landed on a light post outside of the building, and its wings seeming to flutter in jubilation as it perched itself high up on the post.
Winter could suddenly hear music, some sort of classical, she guessed. It had been so long since her ears had been able to appreciate a proper song. A real song; one that didn’t simply compose of her wearied voice and fake instruments in her mind. What did all of this mean? Winter asked herself, looking ahead, curious as to why there were such beautiful tunes playing inside of the structure, and more importantly, whose voices echoed the notes? The notes became higher and louder. The curiosity within Winter grew.
Minutes after, Winter had approached the entrance to the building. She had discovered two large wooden doors left wide open. She entered inside, intrigued. Instantaneously, a large KLANK sound echoed throughout the building, causing the music to come to a sudden halt. Winter jumped in shock, then realized that the noise had come from the heavy doors; they had closed shut behind her as she entered the building.
“What was that?” an elderly man said, followed by an angry grunt.
A younger girl dressed in a pink costume spoke up. “I think the doors shut. I guess it’s quite windy out.”
Winter, who was worried that she might get into trouble for intruding, hid behind a few seats. She made out that the building was an auditorium of some sort. If any of the glee kids had been there, they would have felt as if they were back in the Carmel High School auditorium, spying on their rivals Vocal Adrenaline about a year ago. But Winter wasn’t around then, so she wasn’t aware of the possible consequences that could ensue from sneaking into a building unauthorized.
Peeking through a gap between a couple of seats, Winter could make out what looked like a large group of dancers and musicians. The dancer girls were dressed in three shades of pink from head to toe, and the boys, who were evidently smaller in quantity, were dressed formally in black and white suits, pants and ties. “Back from the top!” the elderly man suddenly said, waving a stick around. Winter guessed he was the conductor that lead the orchestra. And she sure was right, when she noticed the musicians beginning to restart the playing of their instruments, and the dancers beginning to restart their dance.
The sounds were music to Winter’s ears, literally. Music was something she had so often taken for granted, and being without it only to hear it again made her appreciate how much music really did mean to her.
Winter recognized that they were playing The Swan Lake Theme, and the dancers were all in fact ballerinas. They made Winter’s head spin dizzily. Or perhaps it was from an immense lack of food, water and shelter. A few small loaves of bread couldn’t cure her days of starvation and one sip from a grainy, muddy water puddle she had found couldn’t cure her thirst. Abruptly, Winter’s body jolted back. She could feel the air shifting around her arms. Then her head hit something hard with a loud thump! The earth caught her backside, supporting her, but there was no movement. She was completely still, lying beside her fallen luggage. Nobody on the stage seemed take notice of the poor girl at the back of the building, who could have been dead on the ground.
“...And we can’t stop. And we won’t stop. Can’t you see it’s we who own the night? Can’t you see it’s we who ‘bout that life?” Sugar sang along to her iPod, as it played her favorite song at the loudest volume setting possible.
“Take them earphones out, will you? You know the school policy, no music in the halls! And if you dare listen to Miley Cyrus in my presence again, I will slit your throat, in front of everyone!” Miss Ellis walked by, forcing Sugar to unplug her music.
“Can you believe that woman?” Sugar said frustrated, once she had left. “You can’t say that to a student! One day, I’m going to get her fired.”
“Huh?” A confused Daisy stepped back from behind her locker door.
“Never mind. Just saying how much I hate Miss Ellis.”
“Oh,” Daisy replied.
“Anyway, what’s taking you so damn long?” Sugar couldn’t help but wonder. “I’ve listened to We Can’t Stop about three and a half times just while I’ve been waiting here. That’s like... well, I can’t figure out the exact amount of minutes, because maths has never been my forte, but it’s still a long time to grab a couple books.”
“I’m sorry, I just got a few texts. That’s all,” Daisy replied, closing her locker with a few books and files in hand.
“From who?” Sugar asked inquisitively.
“No one special. Just some friends from middle school.” She shook her shoulders.
“Daisy, I swear you’ve been attached to that phone of yours all day, as if you’re a mother and that thing is your baby. It’s not like you, at all. What’s going on?”
“Nothing!” Daisy yelled. It wasn’t in her usual character to snap at others, especially one of her best friends. “Just... just keep yourself out of this, okay? It’s none of your business.”
“I’m sorry. I just want to make sure my girl is okay, because she’s been acting really strange lately.” Sugar was obviously using this ‘girl’ as a pronoun for Daisy.
Daisy sighed. “Well, if you really want to know, I’m actually not okay!” she yelled.
“Is this about Freddie?” Sugar pried for more information.
Daisy grunted in a frustrated tone. “Fine, it’s about Freddie!” She had finally given in. Sugar was a clever manipulator and an excellent persuader, so it was near impossible to leave a conversation without Sugar knowing all of your secrets.
“I got a reminder message from my phone this morning, and-”
“What did it say?” Sugar exclaimed her interruption. She listened eagerly, excited to hear more.
“It said that today’s Freddie’s birthday. And I totally forgot about it,” she said.
“Hey, that’s nothing to worry about!” Sugar declared in her typical animated voice. “We’re going to go and set up the best birthday party he’s ever had, and ever will have.” Daisy rolled her eyes, frustrated, as Sugar continued to blurt out her reply. “I always keep my daddy’s second credit card handy, so we can buy loads of gifts, balloons, cake-”
“Stop!” Daisy yelled. She had obviously had enough of Sugar continually barging her way into other people’s private information. A few students in the hall turned and looked at the girls. Daisy’s shout was louder than the bellow of a lion.
A few moments later, the noise rebuilt itself, and she continued. “I’m sorry, Sugar, but, as great as that sounds, Freddie and I aren’t together anymore. I broke up with him before he graduated. There, that’s it. That’s why I’m upset.”
“But... but why would you do that?”
Daisy sighed. “I knew that our relationship wouldn’t last with him off at college and me still here at school. We’re in two different worlds, Sugar. It was inevitable that we were going to break up sometime, so I thought it’d just be better to end what we had before it was taken away. I didn’t want to have to deal with the pain, Sugar.”
“Well, I think that’s lame,” Sugar openly stated. She could tell by the look on Daisy’s face that she was not impressed by her comment. “Sorry. Aspergers.”
“It’s fine. Maybe you’re right, I am lame. I don’t know what I was thinking, to be honest. I wish he was still here. I wish we could still at least be friends. I haven’t talked to him since graduation day. The longer I spend away from him, the worse I feel inside. We dated for half a year, that’s a long time. He probably feels as if it was time wasted. He probably thinks what we had was never even real, but it was. And I know it was, because I still love him, I still haven’t moved on from what we had. And that’s something.... something special and rare.”
“This is great, Daisy!” Sugar exclaimed excitedly.
“No, it’s not!” Daisy cut her off.
“Wait, I haven’t finished. It’s great because I’ve got a plan you’re going to love. There is no way I’m going to let you cut that hottie out of your life, Daisy. He’s a keeper, for sure.”
“How can you openly express your interest in other guys while you’re already in a relationship? Wait, you are still dating Simon, right?” Daisy asked.
“Of course I am!” Sugar said. “Why would I have changed my plans to come back here instead of McKinley if we’d broken up. Pointless, I say.”
“Sorry for asking,” Daisy said.
“Well, you should be. Didn’t you even see me holding hands with him in glee club yesterday?” Sugar asked. Daisy shook her head. “No? Well, regardless, you’re going to love my plan.”
“I wouldn’t be too sure about that,” Daisy said. “What is it?”
“You’ll just have to wait and see, won’t you?” Sugar clapped her hands in excitement. Her plan was brilliant.
Further down the hall stood June. She was gazing intently at the school’s pin-up bulletin board. June reached forward to pick up a pen that was attached to a sheet of paper, reading ‘Debating Team’. She leant forward and signed her name.
June screamed. Behind her was Andy.
“Oh, it’s just you! You scared me, Andy!”
“Just wanted to let you know I told Tommy you kissed me,” Andy said.
Her eyes widened in disbelief. “No, Andy! Did you really?”
“Yeah, I did. But he doesn’t believe me.”
“Are you being serious?” June asked.
“Yeah. I went up to him and told him exactly what happened. I told him how you kissed me for no reason. I told him that you liked it, too.” Andy laughed.
“What’s so funny? This is not a laughing matter.”
“I’m just kidding, I never told him.” As soon as June realized that Andy was just joking, a short-lived smile spread across her face as a sigh left her mouth.
“Thank you. Thank you so much,” she said, leaning forward for a short hug. “I really love Tommy, and if he found out I kissed you, he’d dump me for sure. I hate the fact that I kissed you. It kills me.”
“Well, if you knew you’d hate it so much,” Andy said, “Then why did you do it?”
Another sigh rushed out of June’s mouth. “As if I’d tell you.”
“Don’t you trust me?” Andy asked.
“Of course not! You’re just going to tell Tommy everything!” she yelled.
“Firstly, I would never do that. But even if I did, you do have to admit that he deserves to know. All he’s ever done is love you, and then you go ahead and kiss your ex behind his back. Deep inside, I wish you’d bestow another kiss upon my lips, but as much as I want you to be mine, I’ve let Tommy have you. I’ve let Tommy have you for a whole year, and now I’m finding out that you don’t even love him. I could have had you for a whole year, June.”
“I do love him!” June butted in.
“Tell me why you kissed me then, if you say you love Tommy so much?”
“Fine, but you have to promise to keep this to yourself,” June said.
“Good,” she said. “I really don’t know how to say this, but I love two boys: you and Tommy. And I don’t know what to do, because I can’t choose one over the other. It’s like a mother choosing her favorite child, it’s impossible.”
“Not for my mother. I was always chosen last. Meh, what does it matter anyway? She’s gone regardless.”
June was surprised. She had never seen Andy open up like this, to anyone. The fact that he had chosen her to open up to made her feel special; like somebody other than Tommy or Harmony trusted her. June had never realized that his mother had passed away, and suddenly noticed that perhaps his drinking problems were associated with this death.
“Is that why you spend so much time at the bars? To abolish the pain?” June asked curiously. She felt slightly guilty for prying slyly for answers, but her curiosity often overtook her.
“You pretty much summarized everything. When I get drunk, I feel like there’s nothing in this world that can stop me, not even my father and my step-mom. Alcohol makes me free to be who who I am,” Andy replied.
“Did getting suspended last year mean nothing at all to you?” June asked.
“Well, it did at the time. But old habits always seem to prevail, or at least in my life, they do.”
“How come your parents let you spend so much time working at the bar?” June asked. “Surely they’re as concerned as I am.”
“My father wouldn’t noticed if I’d got married and had three kids, let alone where I spend my time, June. He spends more time with my step-mother than my seven year old brother and I.”
“How does your brother cope?” June asked.
“He doesn’t.” Andy knew that this sounded awful, but it was the truth, and he didn’t want to lie to June any longer. “I try to look after him, but he needs a real role model. I’m barely around and when I am, I’m trying to recover from hangovers.”
“Andy, I’m worried,” June said. She had never realized that his drinking problems were as bad as they were, and she had never realized that they would have such a large influence and effect on him and his brother. “You need help, Andy.”
“Please let me come over this weekend. You can’t move to Canada like this. I’m going to help you before you leave, alright?”
“I guess,” he sighed.
“Hey, everyone!” Jesse exclaimed as he frantically entered the brimful choir room for the day’s glee club session. “Sorry I’m late, I was busy finalizing a few things with Mr. Jelly.”
“It’s fine, a few of us saw you in his office earlier on, but don’t do it again,” joked Laura in a typically strict tone resembling Jesse’s.
“Do you want me to call Mr. Hadberg in again and get you expelled?” Jesse laughed jokingly, remembering the cruel man from the previous year.
“Could use a break,” Laura mumbled with a cheeky smile.
Jesse, slightly agitated by Laura’s constant comments, decided to shake it off and continue, rather than make an unnecessary fuss. “Regardless, Mr. Jelly had another check-up on our group,” the director began to explain. “He’s worried that this year’s going to be a rerun of last year. I mean, we barely made it past Sectionals, guys.”
“Yeah, Judas, only because you were secretly coaching Vocal Adrenaline behind our backs,” Laura reminded Jesse.
“It’s besides the point, Laura. In fact, some may argue that I helped you get past Sectionals, by getting Vocal Adrenaline disqualified.”
“Which you didn’t even mean to do,” Laura interrupted once more.
Jesse sighed. He wanted to yell at Laura once again, but he evoked memories of her amazing manipulation and blackmail skills, and remembered he was lucky to even have a teaching position at the school, after having being almost kicked out for cheating in the competition.
“Anyway,” he moved on, “Like I said, he’s worried we’re not going to do well. He’s tried to cancel the club altogether, but I assured him we’d do better this year. We really need to up our game, because he’s made a deal that if we can’t make it past Sectionals, all funding for the club is cut. And unfortunately, this club lives off the small profits we get. Without funding, we can’t have a club. We can’t continue, basically. After all, we can’t keep reusing all our sheet music, costumes, props, and all the rest forever.”
June couldn’t help but worry about the future of her favorite club. “What are you trying to say, Jesse?”
“Basically, what I’m trying to say is that if we don’t make it past Sectionals, the club’s over.... which is why everyone must pull their weight this year. No more being late to rehearsals, no more excuses about being tired from dance routines or having a cold, and no more wasting time or arguing with me.” He looked Laura straight in the eye when mentioning the last one.
Jesse suddenly noticed that the vision of the kids shifted from looking at him to the door to the choir room. He turned his head to see what was capturing their attention.
Harmony, Jesse thought. It was strange to think that he had almost forgotten that she had quit the week earlier, considering she had always been the group’s main star.
“I’m in the middle of something, Harmony. What do you want?” Jesse asked the girl, folding his arms sternly.
“I’m here to cause no harm, Jesse. Firstly, I just wanted to let everyone know that as long as the drama in this club ceases to exist, I’m staying an active member of it. After all, you need me more than you know, and you can’t win Sectionals without me,” Harmony said confidently.
“It’s great to have you back!” June jumped out of her seat to give her friend a hug.
“I knew you’d come back!” The kids all cheered, exhilarated with joy to see their best singer return.
Harmony was amazed by the reactions of the club. “I was only gone a week, right?” She laughed, happy to be back. Regardless of all of their losses, the kids still maintained their vibes of positivity and excitement, and this impressed Harmony.
Once the noise dimmed down to a quiet level, Harmony stepped forward to the centre of the choir room, sporting a smile larger than she had ever worn since Terri’s departure to Chicago. “Without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, welcoming to the stage, future 10 times Tony recipient and to-be Broadway star, Lewis Donaldson!”
The kids were unsure of who this strikingly handsome young fellow was, but he certainly caught the attention of the girls.
“Umm, I was in the middle of a conversation, but whatever... continue,” Jesse mumbled, slightly annoyed, but deciding to allow the upcoming audition nevertheless.
The music to Lewis’ audition song then began.
“My sister... my sister... my sister...” Lewis and Harmony began the song.
The faces of the kids looked shocked. It seemed as if they expected Lewis to begin singing the lyrics to a cool, new pop song played often on the radio, but instead, he sang an old rock song from the 90’s. They probably only expected this because of his appearance - his clothes were so trendy and of this age.
“I hate my sister, she’s such a bitch. She acts as if she doesn’t even know that I exist. But I would do anything to let her know I care. But I am only talking to myself ‘cause she isn’t there,” Harmony stepped forward to introduce the song.
Lewis was afraid of performing his audition as a solo, and urged Harmony to duet with him. She had insisted that he would be fine, but in the end, decided to help him out regardless. In a way, this song reminded Harmony of her sister Phoebe, who had been there to console her when she had been sad about losing Terri and Winter. Harmony was more than grateful that Phoebe had flown all the way from New York to Defiance just to comfort her, and was overly impressed with her efforts to clean up her act. The last time she had seen her, she was begging Harmony for money to purchase drugs and alcohol. Although she hadn’t left yet, Harmony knew that it was inevitable that soon she would, and when that day came, she would be so upset. She had just lost her boyfriend and one of her best friends, so having to say goodbye to her sister would be like farewelling the last person left on earth.
“My sister... I love my sister, she’s the best. She’s cooler than any other girl that I have ever met. She had the greatest band, she had the greatest guy. She’s good at everything and doesn’t even try,” Lewis now sang.
Lewis’ mind was set on his sister too, and obviously, the song was a dedication to her. Stella had stayed so positive and strong despite all that she and Lewis had gone through growing up with their parents. Stella had just left for New York, to begin her first year at her dream college, NYADA. Seeing Stella go was so tough for Lewis. He couldn’t wait for the day when he could see her again.
Lewis continued, “She’s got a wall around her nobody can climb. She lets her ladder down for those who really shine. I tried to scale it, but to me she’s blind. So I lit a fire-cracker, went off in my eye.”
The two duetted, “I miss my sister, why’d she go? She’s the one who would have taken me, to my first all-ages show. It was the Violent Femmes and the Del Fuegos. Before they had a record out, before they went gold and started to grow.”
“I miss my sister,” they ended the song together. A long power riff arose from the tame pop style the music had previously possessed. “I miss my sister. I miss my sister. I miss my sister. I really miss her.”
Loud claps echoed around the room, and several cheered for the pair.
“Does Harmony already have a new boyfriend?” Teddy whispered to Liz, who had also returned to the club since leaving, unlike Carlton.
“I doubt it. She’s barely over Terri,” Liz replied softly. “I wouldn’t be surprised if they started dating in a few months, though, because it’s so obvious she has the hots for him.”
“Well, I mean, who wouldn’t?” Teddy giggled.
Once the chit-chat died down, Jesse approached the pair in the centre of the room. “You really do have a good voice,” Jesse said, impressed. “Harmony was right when she came to me the other week. Not that she’s ever been wrong, though.” The three stood there, laughing.
Jesse then cleared his throat. “Take a seat, you two.” He looked at the pair.
“Me too?” Lewis asked.
“Yes, silly, you’re in!” Harmony exclaimed, her eyes lighting up joyously.
The kids clapped. At a closer look, however, it was mainly from the girls. It appeared that some of the males felt threatened by Lewis. After all, the girls clearly loved him already, and if he wanted, he could have stolen all of them off their boyfriends if he’d wanted.
Once Jesse had caught the attention of the kids, he resumed what he had started before he was interrupted. “Anyway, as I was saying before, our budget’s lower than it’s ever been. I was thinking, and fundraising is the only way we’ll be able to make some profits. I still haven’t figured out a way of doing this that would please you, so, uh.... I’m thinking a bake sale would have to suffice...”
Groans echoed around the room.
“Guys! Do you want this club to keep running or not? This is the exact sort of attitude we need to expel if we want to win Sectionals. From now on, misbehavior of any sort will lead to severe punishments. I’m not going to allow such ridiculous attitudes anymore. This club can’t function if we don’t all try our hardest, and shine our brightest. Also, we all need to try and tone down the drama, if you will. Sometimes I feel like we could turn this room into a set for a new musical comedy-drama series, named Glee: The Unitards or something.”
“That’d make a great TV show,” Jason laughed. Poppy’s gaze shifted from Jesse to Jason.
A smile. The first smile from Jason since Winter’s disappearance, Poppy thought.
It seemed that Lewis had noticed the smile too, as his eyes stared into those of Poppy’s with sheer amazement. Poppy turned, and smiled at her friend.
Harmony’s plan worked! He’s smiling! Poppy continued, I guess a good, old song in his throat did brighten up the mood a bit.
A charming young man stood on the stage in the packed restaurant. An elderly woman stood beside him.
“Are you going to sing, or what? We didn’t hire you here at Breadstix to just stand there and look handsome!” Sandy complained.
“I’m not just standing here, Sandy,” Freddie replied, annoyed. “I’m setting up the microphones.”
“Yeah, yeah, just get a move on, alright?” Sandy then staggered over to a table that a small group of students had just left, and began clearing the drinks on it.
“You need some help there?” Sugar asked Freddie, appearing out of nowhere.
“Oh, hey Sugar! I didn’t recognise you. I thought you went back to Ohio?” he asked.
“No, I ended up staying here in Defiance. I finally found where I belong, and that’s Jackson High.”
“Well, I’m glad you found your place.” He smiled, continuing his attempt to set up the technical equipment.
“So, do you need any help with those mics? It looks like you’re having a few technical problems there.”
“Yeah, I am, actually. The microphone just won’t turn on. It’s strange, it’s never done this before.”
“How about you go sit down and have a drink? This might take a minute or two,” Sugar lied cleverly.
As Freddie thanked her and left to take a seat, Sugar’s eyes suddenly widened excitedly, to the point where they mimicked the exaggerated style of a typical Japanese anime character. The plot she had formed with Daisy was going exactly to plan. Prior to Freddie arriving at the restaurant, the two had mucked around with the equipment so that Freddie wouldn’t be able to perform. The next step of their plan was to get Daisy inside unnoticed and allow her to take Freddie’s spot, with another pre-prepared audio system.
Sugar stared up from the numerous electrical chords that she was pretending to fix. Entering the restaurant quietly was Daisy, fiddling nervously with her thumbs. She slowly walked towards the stage, Freddie not noticing a thing.
“Anyway, without further ado, welcome... me!” Daisy jumped onto the stage, declaring the performance.
Sugar quickly stood up, ready to provide back-up vocals. “And me!” she reminded them.
Freddie looked up, confused. Once he realized that Sugar was joined with his ex-girlfriend, he got up and stood in front of the stage. “What’s going on?” he asked Sugar.
“You just wait and see,” she replied, giving Freddie a short wink.
Music then began, and Daisy began to bop around the place. “I heard you’re feeling nothing’s going right,” she sang. “Why don’t you let me stop by? The clock is ticking, running out of time. So we should party all night. So cover your eyes, I have a surprise. I hope you got a healthy appetite. If you wanna dance, if you want it all. You know that I’m the girl that you should call.”
Sugar grabbed a microphone beside Daisy’s and joined in singing with her friend, “Boy, when you’re with me, I’ll give you a taste. Make it like your birthday every day. I know you like it sweet, so you can have your cake. Give you something good to celebrate.”
“So make (so make) a wish (a wish). I’ll make it like your birthday every day. I’ll be (I’ll be) your gift (your gift). Give you something good to celebrate,” Daisy sang, with Sugar echoing the backing vocals into her microphone.
“Pop your confetti, pop your Pèrignon,” Daisy sang. “So hot and heavy, till dawn. I got you spinning like a disco ball. All night they’re playing your song. We’re living the life, we’re doing it right. You’re never gonna be unsatisfied. If you wanna dance, if you want it all. You know that I’m the girl that you should call.”
A group of Daisy’s friends from the cheerleading team now entered through the front entrance Sugar had entered through previously. They ran to the stage Daisy and Sugar were performing on, then gyrated suggestively. “Boy, when you’re with me, I’ll give you a taste. Make it like your birthday every day. I know you like it sweet, so you can have your cake. Give you something good to celebrate.”
“So make (so make) a wish (a wish),” Daisy sang with Sugar repeating her back-up vocals once again. “I’ll make it like your birthday every day. I’ll be (I’ll be) your gift (your gift). Give you something good to celebrate.”
Suddenly, from behind the kitchen, Amanda leapt out, with all of the glee kids following behind her.
Daisy ran off the stage and towards Freddie, who remained seated. Her lips formed a sugary smile. Freddie had forgotten how sweet Daisy’s smile was, and how pretty she was. Daisy’s smile never seemed to wipe off. Her smile added that extra vibe of positivity to the room; the perfect complement to her enchanting voice.
Daisy bent forward, leaning into Freddie’s ears. “Happy birthday,” she whispered in her sing-song voice, with the glee kids shouting the words in the background. These words created a smile from the boy, as Daisy’s breath disappeared in the air.
“So let me get you in your birthday suit. It’s time to bring out the big balloons. So let me get you in your birthday suit. It’s time to bring out the big, big, big, big, big balloons,” both Sugar and Daisy sang. Freddie now got up and followed Daisy, dancing along.
Daisy and Sugar danced around, encouraging customers of the restaurant to stand up and join in. By now, at least ten customers had gotten up and started joining in with Daisy, Sugar, Freddie, the glee kids and the cheerleaders.
“Boy, when you’re with me, I’ll give you a taste. Make it like your birthday every day. I know you like it sweet, so you can have your cake. Give you something good to celebrate. Boy, when you’re with me, I’ll give you a taste. Make it like your birthday every day. I know you like it sweet, so you can have your cake. Give you something good to celebrate.”
“So make (so make) a wish (a wish). I’ll make it like your birthday every day. I’ll be (I’ll be) your gift (your gift). Give you something good to celebrate.”
“Happy birthday,” she whispered in Freddie’s ears.
“You’re the only one that remembered,” he smiled. After these words, he leant forward and unexpectedly kissed her on the lips.
“I love you, Freddie! Happy birthday!”
The next day at school, Miss Ellis stood on the oval, surrounded by cheerleaders.
“Hurry up, girls!” a deep, threatening voice echoed across the school’s bright green oval pitch. “We don’t got all day, do we?”
“S-sorry, Miss Ellis,” Justine hurriedly ran towards the woman with a couple of other cheerleaders. “We were getting our pom-poms and then-”
“I don’t care!” the teacher bellowed back, frightening the poor girls, coercing them into complete silence. “Do you think I signed up at this school to spend all day talking to pathetic latecomers like you? Hell no! You girls are lucky you’re still on the team, especially you... Miss Callaway.”
Justine was tempted to begin recalling the numerous cheerleading sessions that Miss Ellis was late herself, but then remembered the cruel way that the teacher could and would cut girls from the team within a second of a minor comment that offended the woman, even if only in the slightest way.
“I-I’m sorry,” Justine stuttered nervously, attempting to keep the conversation as anodyne as possible. All of the other girls on the team stared at her as if she were a blithering idiot who wouldn’t shut up.
“Just be quiet!” Miss Ellis roared, then proceeding, “I thought it would be a nice little treat for all of us today if I cancelled practice. I have a five minute announcement, then we’ll all be on our ways and you can be dismissed to recess.”
“But.. that’s forty five minutes early! That’s absurd! What on earth are we supposed to do for that long?” a blonde cheerleader stepped forward, staring at Miss Ellis’ face with shock and confusion.
Justine agreed, school was a time to learn and improve, not slack off and sit down.
Miss Ellis exploded with a slight pfft sound. “Go meet a boy, fix up your hair, redo your make-up, whatever you want. I don’t care. The time’s yours.”
Justine wiggled her head in disgust, while most of the other cheerleaders were whispering in excitement at the announcement of a free period.
“But, before you go...” Miss Ellis yelled over the chittering of the girls, “I need you to listen up!”
The attention from all the girls shifted to their teacher as she continued. “I’m holding auditions tomorrow at lunch time. My plan is to completely revamp the team. Most of you are terribly shocking at cheerleading, which explains why I believe it’s time for a change. The new head cheerleader will be selected after the try-outs. Anyone who wants to continue on the team must sign their name on the list in the hall outside Mr. Jelly’s office.”
“But... Miss Ellis, I’ve got a dental appointment tomorrow during lunch,” one of the girls said sweetly. “How am I possibly expected to make it?”
“Don’t worry, sweetheart,” the woman hissed, “I’ve been wanting to kick you off the team for about a year now, anyway. I’m surprised I didn’t, to be honest. You won’t be missing out on anything, my dear.”
The girl who the teacher had picked on tried her hardest to keep her tears inside.
“And Miss Callaway,” Miss Ellis fixed her gaze on the girl, drawing nearer to her, “Don’t turn up tomorrow. I decided that I’m sick of everyone in that ridiculous little glee club of yours. I decided I’ve had enough of you. Shall you turn up, expect a punishment. In fact, none of you glee kids show up tomorrow. That includes you, Sugar and Daisy. I’m sick of all of you.”
Justine stood timidly, Surely, she was kidding, she thought, trying to think positively.
Daisy and Sugar looked at one another, unaware of what to think or say.
“Hey, girlie!” Justine called out triumphantly across the hallway.
“Oh, hey.” Laura looked across the halls, encouraging her cheeks to widen; forcing a smile.
What does she want? Laura thought, feeling unexplainably negative inside at the thought of having to speak to the girl who once seemed to be her best friend.
Justine had now approached Laura. “So, um... Miss Ellis is holding auditions tomorrow at lunch for-”
“Her cheerleaders, I know,” Laura interrupted, her pressured smile vanishing almost immediately.
“How do you know?” Justine questioned confusedly, recognizing the usual slam of a closing locker door somewhere down the hall.
Laura laughed, as if Justine were kidding. “There’s posters everywhere.”
“Oh.” Justine was baffled. How could I have missed all these posters?
“Anyway, what do you want from me?” Laura got right to the point.
Justine didn’t understand why her so-called friend abruptly answered her back in a totally rude manner. “Did I say something that hurt you?” she asked.
“Well, because the tone of your voice was indicating so.”
“I’m sorry, I’m kind of just bummed right now. I wish I could audition,” Laura replied.
“I’m kind of bummed right now too. Miss Ellis told me not to show up to auditions tomorrow,” Justine said.
Laura was utterly disgusted, anyone could tell from the emotions evident on her face. “She can’t do that! What did you do to make her say such a thing?”
“I don’t know,” Justine said truthfully. “I did show up a little bit late, but I think it’s really about me belonging to the glee club, more than anything.”
“Wouldn’t surprise me, actually.” Laura suddenly remembered how cruel the woman had been to her the previous year on the team. She had been kicked off the team for simply being a lesbian. “Look, don’t worry, I’m sure she’ll forget,” Laura lied.
“I’m sure she won’t,” Justine shook her head. “Anyway, I came here to tell you that I think you should try out.”
Laura’s mouth opened with shock. “Are you kidding me, Justine. Miss Ellis would kill to have me out of the school, what makes you think she would want me on her team?”
“Just go for it.” Justine tried to sound confident. “I’m trying out, even though she told me not to. What’s the worst that can happen? She doesn’t accept you?”
“She murders you?” Laura replied, arousing a sudden laugh from both of the girls.
Once the girls had stopped laughing, Justine spoke. “Look, it’s totally up to you. I just think it’d be a great opportunity for you to stand up to her. You know, tell her that you’re mentally strong and you can overcome anything she throws at you.”
“Hopefully not bowling balls.” Laura snorted girlishly, making the two girls giggle.
“Please consider,” Justine said.
“Got a figure like a pinup, got a figure like a doll. Don’t care if you think I’m dumb, I don’t care at all. Candy bear, sweetie pie, wanna be adored. I’m the girl you’d die for,” sang a familiar voice. Right at the front of the line, Justine stood as straight as a soldier, pouting a typical cheerleader smile as she sang.
Margret gazed straight into Justine’s eyes, as if the girl’s performance was absolutely repugnant already. Margret was already shocked enough to see that Justine had turned up for auditions in the first place despite her telling her not to. She insisted that she leave immediately, but Justine ignored her and flouted her with a performance nevertheless, bringing along her glee friends Daisy and Sugar to audition too. Nothing was going to stop them now. They had even gone to the trouble of hiding their music player so that Margret couldn’t stop their instrumental from sounding its tunes.
“I’ll chew you up and I’ll spit you out. ‘Cause that’s what young love, is all about. So pull me closer, and kiss me hard,” Daisy jumped to the front and joined in.
“I’m gonna pop your bubblegum heart,” Sugar appeared out of nowhere and took over.
“I’m Miss sugar pink, liquor liquor lips,” Justine, Daisy and Sugar sang in perfect harmony, dancing with their pom-poms. “Hit me with your sweet love, steal me with a kiss. I’m Miss Sugar pink, liquor liquor lips. I’m gonna be your bubblegum bitch. I’m gonna be your bubblegum bitch.”
Ava, despite being enemies with the girls auditioning, secretly wanted to regain her position on the cheerleading team, and felt that approaching the girls from the sidelines and joining in on the audition song would be the only way to perhaps get an audition, and an eventual spot on the team.
“Queentex, latex, I’m your wonder maid,” Ava sang, “Life gave me some lemons so I made some lemonade. Soda pop, soda pop, baby here I come. Straight to number one.”
Sugar jumped around, singing, “Oh dear diary, I met a boy. He made my dull heart light up with joy. Oh dear diary, we fell apart.”
“Welcome to the life of Electra Heart,” Daisy echoed.
Justine and Daisy ran across the entire length of the gym floor, then turned around and began displaying a bunch of sophisticated jumps, backflips and somersaults, while Sugar and Ava kicked their heels in time with the beat as all four of them sang. “I’m Miss sugar pink, liquor liquor lips. Hit me with your sweet love, steal me with a kiss. I’m Miss Sugar pink, liquor liquor lips. I’m gonna be your bubblegum bitch. I’m gonna be your bubblegum bitch.”
Using a door located behind Margret, a beaming Laura entered the gymnasium in style, modeling in her old cheerleading outfit. She decided to audition after all, as she came to a conclusion that there was nothing that Margret could possibly take away from her; in other words, she had nothing to lose. “I think I want your... your American tan. Oh-oh-oh!” Laura sang, causing Margret to turn her head in shock. “I think I’m gonna... be my biggest fan! Oh-oh-oh!”
The girls continued to dance around the room excitedly, and Laura joined them.
Justine, Daisy, Sugar, Ava, and now Laura, sang the final chorus, “I’m Miss sugar pink, liquor liquor lips. Hit me with your sweet love, steal me with a kiss. I’m Miss Sugar pink, liquor liquor lips. I’m gonna be your bubblegum bitch. I’m gonna be your bubblegum bitch.”
“I’m Miss sugar pink, liquor liquor lips,” The girls repeated energetically. “Hit me with your sweet love, steal me with a kiss. I’m Miss Sugar pink, liquor liquor lips. I’m gonna be your bubblegum bitch. I’m gonna be your bubblegum bitch.”
The music came to an abrupt halt. Sweat began accumulating on the foreheads of the girls, after displaying such elaborate footwork and gymnastic skills. They stood directly in front of Margret, anxious to witness the coach’s reaction.
Silence filled the room, until... “I’m appalled!” echoed from the mouth of the coach.
“I am so appalled! I’m disappointed that you girls think you can just barge into my gym unknowingly and shatter my eardrums to pieces! I made it very clear I didn’t want a single one of you coming back to audition for my breathtaking cheerleading team, and what did you do? You came crawling right back!”
“We wanted to show you that we’ll put our heart and soul into everything we do in this club, if you’d just give us a chance, Coach,” Laura looked Margret in the eye as she spoke. “We wanted to show you that we’ve improved and-”
“Enough!” Margret screeched at the top of her lungs. “You came here only to confirm what I said earlier, that you’re simply not good enough for the team. Now, if you wouldn’t mind, I’d like to leave. I’ve got a date with a charming young fellow I met the other day, and I’m already late, thanks to you girls!”
Margret leant over to pick up a golden-coloured Guess bag that rested on the seat beside her, wrapped it around her arm, then got up and left. “On your way you go, losers!” she echoed as she arrived at the door Laura had previously entered through. “And don’t come back!” she yelled as the door slammed behind her.
Daisy twisted her body to Laura. “What do we do know?” she said, disappointed.
“It’s too late, she’s made up her mind. I knew this was going to be a bad idea. She hates us, why don’t we just learn to accept it for once?” Laura replied.
“Accept what?” Sugar butted in. “That we’re not good enough? That woman is full of it, she’s far less talented than us! We can’t just let her push us around like that! We deserve a position on the team just as much as all the popular girls.”
“Actually, not trying to be rude here, but you don’t.”
“Excuse me?” Daisy turned her head, looking Ava right in the eyes.
Ava shrugged her shoulders. “What? I’m just being real here. None of you are good enough. You should have given up ages ago.”
Laura’s face began to redden with rage. “Leave us alone, you bitch!” she screamed, lifting her arm and tensing her hand into a ball. Laura had not forgotten about the incident Ava had arranged the previous year. Sugar and Daisy shivered nervously at what was possibly about to unfold.
“I’m no bitch, Laura. That’s all you,” Ava laughed.
At that, Laura’s fist walloped into Ava’s head. Sugar stood back and screamed, while Justine ran forward to tear Laura away from her rival. A big THUMP sounded as Ava fell to the floor.
“Hey, Laura! Stop! I know she’s a bully, but you don’t need to start this!” Justine exclaimed.
Sugar and Daisy sprinted to Ava’s aid.
“Leave me alone, I’m fine!” Ava said, rubbing the side of her head.
“Are you sure?” Sugar looked worried. “Seriously, as much as I hate you, I just want you to leave us alone. I would never wish anything bad upon you, ever. Well, maybe that’s a lie, actually, but still, I don’t want you to die.”
“Well, good, ‘cause I’m not going to,” Ava said, lifting herself off the ground. “I’m fine. Just a bruise or two.”
Ava then looked back at Laura, who was being held back by Justine. A sentence almost spluttered from Ava’s lips, but she held them in, and decided it best to walk off.
“Where a-am I?”
Eyes from above peered down on the girl, sighs of relief breaking free from their mouths.
“You’re in hospital,” one of the men said, a smile forming on his face.
“Well, that’s nothing to smile about!” the girl snapped, with an obvious hint of annoyance. “Wh-what the heck is going on right now?
“You’ve been in a coma for just over ten days. We were so worried about you,” another man stepped forward, beginning to stroke the girl’s hair.
Winter recognized the man’s face, but couldn’t pinpoint who he was exactly. “Who are you?” she asked curiously.
“I-I’m.... don’t you remember me?” he asked.
“N-no. I get the s-sense I’ve seen you somewhere,” Winter stumbled for words. Her fall had quite evidently played a large impact on her memory and speech.
The emotions on the man’s face went from relief to distress almost immediately.
“Doctor, you never told me she had memory loss too!” Winter’s father, Leo, said.
“No, really, who are you?” Winter asked again.
“There was no damage to her brain, she shouldn’t have forgotten anything. Might be the medication having an impact, but even so...” the doctor replied.
“Winter, that man is your father. His name is Leo Delgado,” Winter’s mother, Helen, said.
“Oh, and who exactly are you?” she then questioned.
“Oh dear.” Helen sighed heavily. “She’s forgotten us, Leo.”
“Who are you?” Winter yelled.
“I’m your mother. Do you really not remember me?” Helen asked. Tears now began to drip down the side of her face and down her chin.
“I think I’ve seen you before,” Winter muttered, clutching tight to the thin blankets the hospital provided. Suddenly, a smile spread on her face.
“She’s smiling,” the doctor whispered to Helen and Leo.
“I wonder what she’s thinking about. Memories of the past that she’s remembering, perhaps?” Leo wondered aloud.
Her smile grew into a beam, and her breathing cultivated a girlish giggle.
“Mother, father,” Winter managed to say through her childlike laughs, “I know who you are. Of course I do. I’ve known the whole time, I’d never forgotten. I just wanted to trick you; to lighten the mood. You don’t need to worry, I’m fine.”
Her smile shrunk to an expressionless face when she noticed that nobody in the room found her ‘joke’ very funny at all.
“Honey, you had me worried sick. This isn’t time to play jokes on us. We’ve been waiting weeks for you to wake, and when you do, you go ahead and do this, you-”
“Helen!” Leo stepped forward to drag his wife back. “Helen,” he whispered to her calmly, “Remember what I said: if you really want her to forgive you and for her to see you as her mother, you’ve got to stop being so harsh.”
“You’re right,” Helen whispered back to her husband, then turning to Winter. “I’m sorry, sweetie. I’m just glad you’re alive and we’re all together.”
“When do I get to go home?” Winter looked towards the doctor, who was still in the room.
“About a week,” he replied.
“And when does school start?” Winter asked.
“I’m afraid you’ve missed just over a week, but luckily you’ll be back soon,” Leo answered her question.
Winter sighed, then suddenly, her medication began to kick in, and she dozed off to sleep once again.
Harmony lay relaxed by the side of a swimming pool, a large umbrella positioned above her head, so as to block out the glare of the sun.
Terri appeared from the other side of the pool, comfortably smoking a cigarette. He began slowly wandering his way towards Harmony, who was still lying down, sunbathing. He muttered a few words to Harmony, then started to remove his shirt, to reveal hundreds of tattoos scattered all across his brawny chest. He blew out his cigarette, then placed it down. Whilst he did this, he muttered a few words to Harmony, then dived into the pool beside them.
Suddenly, Harmony began to sing. “Blue jeans, white shirt. Walked into the room, you know you made my eyes burn. It was like James Dean, for sure. You’re so fresh to death, I’m sick as ca-cancer. You were sorta punk rock, I grew up on hip-hop. But you fit me better than my favorite sweater. And I know that love is mean (oh oh) and love hurts (oh oh). But I still remember that day we met in December, oh baby.”
Harmony now stood up, and took a closer look at Terri. She watched on as he swam gloriously from all ends of the pool, evoking her senses of adoration for the boy once again.
She now moved closer to the pool, and dipped her feet in the edge of the pool, as she watched Terri and lovingly sang, “I will love you till the end of time. I would wait a million years. Promise you’ll remember that you’re mine. Baby, can you see through the tears? Love you more than those bitches before. Say you’ll remember, oh baby, say you’ll remember, oh baby, who. I will love you till the end of time.”
It was at this point in the song that she reached forward and began slowly stepping further into the pool. Eventually, she reached the floor of the pool and gracefully swam towards Terri, who caught her, and held her in his arms, as she continued to sing, “Big dreams, gangsta. Said you had to leave to start your life over. I was like, ‘no please, stay here. We don’t need no money, we could make it all work.’ But he headed out on Sunday, said he’d come home Monday. I stayed up waiting, anticipating and pacing. But he was chasing (oh oh) paper (oh oh). Caught up in the game, that was the last I heard.”
The two began to kiss passionately. Underneath the water, Harmony noticed that several alligators swam freely around the two, but she wasn’t worried because she was safe in Terri’s arms. “I will love you till the end of time,” she continued. “I would wait a million years. Promise you’ll remember that you’re mine. Baby, can you see through the tears? Love you more than those bitches before. Say you’ll remember, oh baby, say you’ll remember, oh baby, who. I will love you till the end of time.”
Above the water she calmly lay in, the harsh sun blazed its rays at her eyes, and the palm trees surrounding the setting blew wildly in the summer breeze. Terri started to caress her body, and it wasn’t long until he was reaching his fingers down Harmony’s throat. As much as it hurt, she didn’t care, because she loved him and wanted to spend the rest of her life with him.
“He went out every night, and baby, that’s alright,” her voice echoed around the setting. “I told you that no matter what you did, I’d be by your side. ‘Cause I’m a ride or die, whether you fail or fly. Well, heck, at least you tried. But when you walked out the door, a piece of me died. Told you I wanted more, it’s not what I had in mind. Just want it like before. We were dancing all night. Then they took you away, stole you out of my life. You just need to remember.”
Water splashed around her face, while her head became submerged completely under the surface. She took one final glimpse at the alligators that swished their strong, scaly tails, then her eyes shut abruptly, and the music continued. “I will love you till the end of time. I would wait a million years. Promise you’ll remember that you’re mine. Baby, can you see through the tears?” Terri continued to firmly stroke her torso, as her mouth began to fill up with water. He didn’t seem to notice the girl was drowning, for his eyes were closed with lustful thoughts. “Love you more than those bitches before. Say you’ll remember, oh baby, say you’ll remember, oh baby, who. I will love you till the end of time.”
The song ended, and Harmony suddenly screamed.
“What’s going on?” yelled a familiar voice.
“I’m drowning!” Harmony yelled in the darkness.
Suddenly, light filled the scene, and Phoebe entered her sister’s room.
“Are you okay, Harms?” Phoebe asked worriedly.
“Terri tried to choke me to death!” she screamed, distressed.
Phoebe attempted to calm Harmony. “It’s okay, it’s okay,” she said. “It was just a bad dream, Harmony. You’re here and you’re alive. Terri’s in Chicago. It’s okay, Harmony, it’s okay.”
Harmony’s breathing was out of control, and the sound of her heart thumping could be heard in all corners of the room. “Slow down your breathing, everything’s going to be fine. I’m here to look after you.”
After five or so minutes, Harmony was calm once again. She lay silently in her bed, and Phoebe entered her room with a glass of water.
“Here, have a drink,” she said, handing the glass to her sister.
Harmony couldn’t help but imagine the glass she held being a miniature version of the pool that she swam in within her dreams. It was only a few moments later when Phoebe decided to leave Harmony’s bedroom, allowing her own time to sleep calmly.
By now, it was just past midnight in the Harpse household, but despite being awake for over thirty minutes, Harmony could not sleep. Her mind was flooded with thoughts and she could not decipher the meaning of the dream. Harmony had always associated Terri with loving qualities; as a kind-hearted soul who was willing to comfort and support her through everything. But now, Terri’s image had been scrambled into a distinctly wicked, vicious monster, willing to choke and drown an innocent lover. Had moving to Chicago and being away from Harmony really changed him? Had he got involved with the wrong crowds, or had Harmony simply never noticed his dark side before? All of these questions filled up her head, until eventually she was fast asleep.
A dazzle of shimmering light leapt through the cool air. Winter’s eyes blinked open timidly. She reached forward to remove the thick blanket that rested against her body, keeping her warm as she slept throughout the night. Once the covers were removed, she noticed the lustrous gleam of brightness once again. A lit candle sat on a large, wooden piece of furniture in the distance; flickering its brilliant light. Winter imagined that the flame was a tiny replica of one of the ballerinas she had seen earlier, as the flame danced skillfully across the tip of the stage, or what was really just a large clump of wax.
After a minute or two of gazing intently at the magical illumination, Winter was shocked to notice that she was rested in her own bed, in her own bedroom. She could have sworn that she still heard the hums of the complex machines that lived in the hospital. Winter looked around. There were no other patients, doctors or nurses, so it must have been her home. She stared back at the candle. Without it, the room would have been as dark as burnt coal, and as cold as crisp ice.
She decided to get up, and explore her home. She stumbled up the stairs, and slowly entered the living room. A fresh glint of light entered through her drawn back curtains; the sunlight from the outer world quickly fluttering in front of her, almost blinding her tired eyes.
“Mother! Father!” she yelled. “Is anyone home?”
After about a minute, her parents appeared in the living room.
“Hello, sweetie.” Helen smiled at her daughter.
“We’ve missed you,” Leo added. “You were all drugged out at the hospital, so it’s great that we can finally speak normally.”
“Yeah, I’ve got something to show you.” Helen smiled. She ushered her daughter back to her bedroom, then shifted the candle that still burnt brightly on her large, wooden desk. On the desk were two pieces of paper. Helen lifted them, then handed them to Winter.
Leo beamed with joy. “We thought we’d get you something.”
“It better be a unicorn,” Winter joked, as a small yawn erupted from her mouth.
She looked down at the slips of paper. “What is this?”
“They’re stars. We bought some stars, you know, up in the night sky,” said her father.
“That’s lovely, but why?” Winter asked, confused.
“We named one after each of us. Your father and I are going to keep the star we named after you, and you’ll keep the star named after us. That way, we’ll always be together, even when we’re not. When your dad’s off at work, you can look out at the night sky and you’ll see Leo the Star, and you’ll remember him. Likewise for all of us, really. We named the biggest star after you, because...”
“Because I’m the fattest?” Winter grew angry immediately. It was most likely from all of the medication she had been given at the hospital, and her parents understood her moods could have been altered because of that.
“No, Winter.” Helen patted her on the back, then continued, “Because you’re the brightest star out of all of us.”
“And it took you this long to notice, did it?” she said. The look on Winter’s face suggested she was everything but impressed and excited for the stars her parents had purchased.
“I’m tired right now. Maybe we could speak later?”
“Of course, sweetie, whatever you desire. The doctors said you need to rest.”
“Well, that’s good.” Winter faked a smile, then went back to her bedroom to lie down.
Most people would have been flattered to know their parents had named a star after them, but for Winter, it meant nothing if her mother didn’t take action to comfort her, and little progress had been made.
The next day, Winter was no longer exhausted, after almost another day of pure sleep. Throughout the morning, Winter had prepared something. Her father was still in bed, asleep, but her mother had just woken up.
Winter inhaled a deep breath, making an effort to prevent her emotions from getting the better of her. It was impossible, it seemed. The negative moments and stresses her mother had inserted into her life were simply all too much to keep inside, and it seemed that no amount of apologies or gifts could win back her trust.
Winter took a seat on the stool in front of the grand piano her mother owned, then nervously exhaled a puff of warm air. “Please don’t interrupt this,” Winter said, staring her mother into the eyes. “I can explain everything afterwards.”
“Sure, sweetie,” her mother replied.
She opened her mouth, then began to sing, the emotive tunes of the piano keys complimenting her modulated voice.
“You bought a star, in the sky tonight,” she sang whilst constantly switching piano chords in the right hand. “Because your life is dark, and it needs some light. You named it after me, but I'm not yours to keep. Because you'll never see, that the stars are free.”
Winter thrust her fingers on the keys, their sounds becoming louder and quicker, while Winter’s voice strengthened. “Oh, we don't own our heavens now. We only own our hell. And if you don't know that by now, then you don't know me that well.”
Reaching the song’s pre-chorus, Winter still hadn’t looked up at her mother. She kept her range of sight directly on the piano, so as to not lose concentration and ruin the song. “All my life I've been so lonely, all in the name of being holy. And still, you'd like to think you know me. You keep buying stars. And you could buy up all the stars, but it wouldn't change who you are. You're still living life in the dark. It's just who you are. It's just who you are.”
Winter could feel the moisture in her eyes squirming inside, ready to burst out into tears at any moment. Each time she had practiced the song, it would always be the same: her eyes would become watery, and she’d attempt to keep the tears in until the song was over, however, she never succeeded once. This time was different, though. Winter was determined not to embarrass herself. She had to look strong and confident in front of her mother in order to convincingly sell the message of the song.
“You bought a star in the sky tonight. And in your man-made dark, the light inside you died.
“Oh, we don't own our heavens now, we only own our hell. And if you don't know that by now, then you don't know me that well.”
The stresses of the girl were extremely evident through her pained expressions and ultimately, voice, “All my life I've been so lonely. All in the name of being holy. Still, you'd like to think you own me. You keep buying stars. And you could buy up all the stars. But it wouldn't change who you are. You're still living life in the dark. It's just who you are. It's just who you are.”
Winter lifted her hands an octave higher on the instrument and began the most challenging section of the song - emotionally and playing-wise. “Yeah, you know only how to own me. You know only how to own me.”
It was at this moment that Winter’s eyes poured out with tears. She thought she could hold them in, but she had been proven wrong once again. The droplets gradually trickled down her cheeks like gentle springs spilling down a waterfall. As much as she cried, she still sang every single note perfectly.
“You're buying stars to shut out the light. We come alone and alone we die.”
The next line she sang caused Helen to burst out into tears too. “And no matter how hard you try, I'll always belong in the sky.”
“And you could buy up all the stars. But it wouldn't change who you are. You're still living life in the dark. It's just who you are. It's just who you are. It's who you are. It's who you are. It's who you are. It's who you are. It's who you are. It's who you are. It's who you are. It's who you are.”
“Winter, I don’t know what to say,” Helen said through her tears. “That was beautiful.”
“Thank you. I just thought I’d let you know how I feel. There’s no point buying me stars if you’re never going to change inside. All I want is a mother that loves me. I don’t need stars, all I want is you. The real, loving side of you. Ever since we escaped poverty, you’ve been a different person.”
“I think you’re stepping out of line, Winter!” Helen snapped.
“No! No, I am not! It’s about time I stood up for what I deserve! And what I deserve is a real mother: somebody who loves me for all that I am, somebody that will let me live my own life and pursue my own dreams!”
“I just don’t want you to fail, sweetie.”
“But I won’t!” Winter explained. “I’m one of the best singers out there, and even you know that. I mean, let’s be real here, even you complimented me just then on that song I sang, and you never compliment me. Don’t say you don’t, either, because we both know all you do is scream at me for trying. Even if I’m not the most successful performer out there, I know I can survive off what I love. Because when somebody cares enough, and has that burning passion within them, nobody can stop them from getting what they truly want.”
Helen looked shocked, and broke down into tears once again. “You’re right, Winter. I haven’t always been there for you, and I need to change.”
“Good,” Winter replied. “Anyway, I’m going to school. It’s about time I got back to that place.”
“But, the doctors said not to go until you’re truly ready!” Helen said strictly.
“I am ready, mother!” she yelled back, bending over to pick up her schoolbag, then slamming the door shut behind her as she left.
“Jason!” Winter ran ecstatically to greet her boyfriend.
“Oh my God!” Jason exclaimed. “It’s true, you’re back!”
“It’s so good to see you!” Winter said, a smile on her face. Winter stepped forward to give her boyfriend a hug. Seeing him and touching him was such an overwhelming experience for her, that tears began to form around her eyes. “I promised myself I wouldn’t cry.”
“Well, you broke your promise,” Jason replied monotonously.
“I guess I did,” she said through her tears. “I missed you, I-I really did.”
“Me too,” he said.
“I-I don’t really know what to say, to be honest. It’s been so long that we’ve talked.”
“Yeah,” Jason awkwardly replied, not knowing how to respond to the situation.
“So, uh... I guess I just want to say that I’m sorry. I’m really sorry that I left you here.”
“Well, you should be. You don’t understand how worried I’ve been. No one’s ever caused me this much stress in my entire life.” He spoke so calmly, yet the anger inside of him was so clear through his words.
Winter shrugged her shoulders. “Well, I really am sorry.”
Jason looked concerned for the girl, but as much as he was, he couldn’t stop his anger inside from taking over his emotions. “Sometimes sorry’s just not good enough. Sometimes you just can’t forgive a person for what they’ve done. And I’m sorry to say, but this is one of those situations, Winter. I know that you were scared of your mother, and I know you felt lonely and excluded from everyone, but I was always there for you. I’ve been here since the start. And to think that you’d rather be out in the world on your own, with nothing, than be with me, well, that hurts. It stings, actually.”
Winter was shocked. The last thing she imagined Jason would be saying was how upset he was at her. She’d imagined that Jason would have been sympathetic; she imagined that she would have been greeted back in open arms, but instead, her idea of a warm welcoming was met with critical anger. There’s got to be some way to win him back, to get him to forgive me. I need to express how sorry I am through a different method of communication. He obviously doesn’t want to hear me talk, she thought.
Jason continued speaking. “You know, I thought I knew you better. I thought you’d have listened to me. I thought you’d never leave. And I thought you’d choose me over nothing. But I thought wrong, because you’d rather be lost, than be comforted by me. And you know what, I’m sick of your indecisiveness. One minute, you tell me you want to be in New York with Harmony, on Broadway, then the next, you say you’d rather be down on the west coast, as a singer in Hollywood. One day, you’re going to have to learn, that people don’t tolerate that crap.”
Winter listened intently to every word Jason spoke. Down on the west coast, she repeated what Jason had said in her head. Down on the west coast, she thought. That’s it! I’ve got it! I’ll sing and win him back! There’s nothing that Jason loves more than hearing me sing. It’s bound to work; it’s practically foolproof!
Winter tried once more to ask for his forgiveness. “I’m sorry, I really am.” She wiped the tears from her face.
“Sorry just won’t cut it. I think I’ve made myself clear.” Then suddenly, Jason stormed off, leaving Winter all to herself in the empty school corridor, people surveying the girl, as tears continued to run down her cheeks.
“I’m sorry about before,” Jason said.
“Me too. I shouldn’t have left.”
“No, really. I overreacted. You have nothing to be sorry about. It’s not your fault, and I understand that now.”
“Well, that’s good to know. I was afraid you’d never understand. I called you here because I wanted to sing you something. It’s kind of an apology song for everything. I thought you might like it,” she said.
“Thanks,” she smiled, then got up and allowed the instrumental to start playing.
“Down on the West Coast, they got a saying. If you’re not drinking, then you’re not playing. But you’ve got the music. You’ve got the music in you, don’t you?” The words escaped her mouth so effortlessly, yet their sounds left a smooth, raspy whisper. Jason was still mad at Winter for leaving, but he knew he had overreacted earlier on.
Jason had never heard the song before, but upon hearing it, he knew it was a new favorite of his, by far. “Down on the West Coast, I get this feeling, like, it all could happen. That’s why I’m leaving, you for the moment. You for the moment, Boy Blue, yeah, you.” Winter leant forward at the mention of ‘Boy Blue’, and gently placed her arms around her boyfriend’s waist.
“You’re feeling hot, I push away, I’m feeling hot to the touch,” she began to elegantly move across the floor with Jason, while singing in her pleasantly husky voice, “You say you’ll miss me the most, I say I’ll miss you so much. But something keeps me really quiet, I’m alive, I’m a-lush. Your love, your love, your love.”
The pace of the music slowed, but Winter’s voice lifted the song to heights of emotiveness perhaps never reached before by anyone in the glee club. “I can see my baby swinging. His Parliament’s on fire and his hands are up. On the balcony and I’m singing: ooh baby, ooh baby, I’m in love. I can see my sweet boy swaying. He’s crazy y Cubano como yo, my love. On the balcony and I’m saying: move baby, move baby, I’m in love. I’m in love (I’m in love). I’m in love (I’m in love).”
“Mic check. 1, 2, 3. Go, girl,” she whispered in Jason’s left ear.
“Down on the West Coast, they got their icons,” she continued to sing, elevating her voice with every word, “Their silver starlets, their Queens of Saigons. And you’ve got the music. You’ve got the music in you, don’t you?”
Winter’s breathless, sultry style continued as she sang, “Down on the West Coast, they love their movies. Their golden gods and, Rock n’ Roll groupies. And you’ve got the music. You’ve got the music in you, don’t you?”
She swayed around the room, singing, “You push it hard, I pull away, I’m feeling hot and on fire. I guess that no one ever really made me feel that much higher. Te deseo, cariño, boy, it’s you I desire. Your love, your love, your love.”
Hearing Winter’s silky smooth voice singing a lyrical masterpiece felt like heaven to Jason. Her body rested against his own, and he could feel her warmth radiate throughout his soul. “I can see my baby swinging. His Parliament’s on fire and his hands are up. On the balcony and I’m singing: ooh baby, ooh baby, I’m in love. I can see my sweet boy swaying. He’s crazy y Cubano como yo, my love. On the balcony and I’m saying: move baby, move baby, I’m in love.”
She repeated the chorus one last time as she shifted across the floor with Jason in her arms, “I can see my baby swinging. His Parliament’s on fire and his hands are up. On the balcony and I’m singing: ooh baby, ooh baby, I’m in love. I can see my sweet boy swaying. He’s crazy y Cubano como yo, my love. On the balcony and I’m saying: move baby, move baby, I’m in love. I’m in love. I’m in love.”
As soon as the music stopped, Winter’s sweet, soft voice echoed across the room almost immediately. “Baby, I’m sorry for everything.” She caught her breath back, then whispered, “I love you, I really do.”
She gazed deeply into her boyfriend’s eyes. For a moment, there was complete silence. “Please tell me you do, too?”
Jason’s mouth went to utter a few words, but it stopped, then opened suddenly once again. “I don’t know what to say.”
Winter didn’t know what to say either. A strong feeling of unease entered her body. What if Jason doesn’t love me back? she worried. I’m going to spend the rest of my life trying to let go of him. Why did I ever think running away was a good idea?
“I just don’t know what to say,” Jason repeated. His mind went blank. Winter now began to cry. Being gone for so long had been tough, but to face the consequences of returning was perhaps even harder.
“Having you in my life... it’s been great. But, what you did to me - running away - that wasn’t okay, Winter. You left me here all alone, and that was selfish. Really selfish. You knew I could have helped you overcome all of your problems, but you still left. You left in hopes of a better life, but it made me feel like you didn’t need me, and just wanted a better version of me. Almost as if you wanted someone new. But, regardless of how selfish you were, I still feel something I’ve never felt before. Never. I always tell myself to stop trusting everyone, because people are deceitful and only want what’s best for themselves. But now, I feel as if I don’t need to abide by that rule anymore. As if I can rely on something. And that something is you.” Winter smiled with a breath of relief, and began wiping her tears.
“You’re my one true love, Winter, and I never want to let you go. I wish we could just stay here forever, in each other’s arms. I love you so much, I really do.”
Winter pulled herself closer to Jason. “I love you too, Boy Blue. And about what you said earlier, about me not knowing what I want to do. Well, in case you couldn’t tell by the song, I want to come to California with you, and be a singer.”
“That sounds great, but we still have a couple of years before we graduate. I shouldn’t have pressured you into deciding. Just, please promise me you’ll never leave again. Ever. You don’t know how painful it was to have you gone for so long. If you promise to never do it again, I’ll forgive you.”
“I promise,” she smiled, reaching forward to give her boyfriend a warm, loving hug. It was the ultimate symbol of their reunion; the ultimate symbol of their love for one another. And in that moment, it was incontestable that no matter what would be thrown their way, they were prepared to endure and stay.
“So, uh... while you’ve been away, we’ve been practicing a little number in glee club. Now that you’re back, we thought you might like to be a part of it. I know you’ve memorized all the words to it, because it’s actually one of your favorite songs. So, what do you say? You in?”
“Of course I am. You don’t know how much I’ve missed singing, and how much I’ve missed that club. Come on, let’s go.”
Jason and Winter entered the auditorium; a smile on Winter’s face as her left hand connected with Jason’s right. She skipped to the front of the stage, still holding onto Jason, and sang, “All I knew this morning when I woke, is I know something now, know something now, I didn't before. And all I've seen since eighteen hours ago, is green eyes and freckles and your smile, in the back of my mind making me feel like.”
Harmony now joined Winter, reminding the club of the friendship the two had. “I just wanna know you better, know you better, know you better now. I just wanna know you better, know you better, know you better now,” they sang.
The song continued, but now Winter sang with Jason, “I just wanna know you better, know you better, know you better now. I just wanna know you, know you, know you.”
Lewis made his way from the middle row to the front, and joined Harmony in song, with The Unitards echoing background vocals. “Cause all I know is we said hello. And your eyes look like coming home. All I know is a simple name. Everything has changed.”
“All I know is you held the door. You'll be mine and I'll be yours,” Winter and Jason took over the chorus. “All I know since yesterday is everything has changed.”
“And all my walls stood tall painted blue. And I'll take them down, take them down and open up the door for you,” Lewis sang.
As much as Harmony still loved Terri, her feelings for him were starting to dissolve. Her eyes were starting to open to Lewis. He was handsome, clever, and a talented performer. Sharing her dreams with him made her feel special, as if he was the only one that really cared about where she was headed. “And all I feel in my stomach is butterflies. The beautiful kind, making up for lost time. Taking flight, making me feel right,” she sang.
“I just wanna know you better, know you better, know you better now,” Harmony and Winter duetted. Their voices were perfect together; they were similar but simultaneously unique. “I just wanna know you better, know you better, know you better now.”
Lewis and Harmony continued the song. Their voices fitted together just as well as the Harmony and Winter combination. “I just wanna know you better, know you better, know you better now. I just wanna know you, know you, know you.”
The pair continued with The Unitards, “Cause all I know is we said hello. And your eyes look like coming home. All I know is a simple name. Everything has changed.”
“All I know is you held the door,” Jason and Winter sung. “And you'll be mine and I'll be yours. All I know since yesterday is everything has changed.”
Daisy now took the lead. Freddie had come back to visit, and sang along too. “Come back and tell me why. I'm feeling like I've missed you all this time, oh, oh, oh. And meet me there tonight. And let me know that it's not all in my mind.”
“I just wanna know you better, know you better, know you better now,” Winter and Daisy sang. “I just wanna know you, know you, know you.” Winter felt special. Not only did the club rehearse a welcome song for her, they let her be a part of it as well. She may not have found a home in her mother’s house, just yet, but she certainly had found one in the glee club.
“All I know is we said hello. And your eyes look like coming home. All I know is a simple name. Everything has changed,” Harmony and Lewis duetted in perfect unison.
“All I know is you held the door. You'll be mine and I'll be yours. All I know since yesterday is everything has changed,” Jason and Winter sang.
Harmony continued solo, looking Lewis closely in the eyes, “All I know is we said hello. So dust off your highest hopes. All I know is pouring rain and everything has changed.”
“All I know is a new found grace. All my days I'll know your face. All I know since yesterday is everything has changed.” Winter finished the song.
If it wasn’t clear through the lyrics of the song that Winter was finally back where she belonged, then it was most certainly noticeable through the way she gently kissed her lover, Jason, at the conclusion of the song, and afterwards joined the kids for a group hug.
“Friends for life?” Winter asked in the circle the group had formed.
Meanwhile, standing at the auditorium entrance was Carlton, staring in at the club reunion.
“God, I can’t stand them anymore,” he muttered quietly, turning to the girl behind him.
“I don’t know what you ever saw in that club. It’s about time we get rid of them,” Ava whispered back, watching on as the kids hugged.
“Friends for life!” the club chanted joyously, while their rivals spied quietly on the unaware group.