Notable: Part Two
Mala wiped her eyes and said, "What's this?"
"Just open it," Julie replied excitedly.
Mala opened the object, a case, and shrieked
happily. "Is this what I think this is?"
"Yes," Julie replied with a smile. "It's the
clarinet I used to win the Seasonal Talent Show when I played in it. I want
you to have it. But don't break its winning streak! Go out there and get the
"Thank you, thank you, thank you!" Mala exclaimed
and hugged her sister. She began jumping up and down while cradling the clarinet
case in her arms.
Their owner smiled and said to Mala, "Come on,
we better get going! Performers were supposed to be at school a couple of minutes
Mala grabbed her case and music then followed
their dad out the door, waving to her brother and sister as she left. "See you
in an hour!" she shouted and then the door banged shut.
* * * * * * * * * * *
Bobby and Julie strolled into the school auditorium
scanning the crowded seats for their father. Finding him, they quickly walked
down and pushed past people already gathered in the rows to get seats next to
"How is she?" Julie asked as she sat down and
opened her program.
"I don't know. I think she's nervous, but alright,"
their dad replied.
Julie stared at the stage, knowing that there
were a lot of performers behind the curtain waiting in anticipation for the
show to start. She squinted as she thought that she saw a red head peek out
from behind the curtain quickly before going back in. "I'll be right back,"
Julie said as she got up and began pushing past all of the people again, getting
annoyed murmurs from them.
The blue Gelert strode back behind the stage
and looked around for her sister. There she was, standing in the back with a
scared look on her face. Her new clarinet was gleaming slightly under the dim
light of the backstage and Mala's music was crinkled tightly in her hand.
Julie shook her head and walked back to her sister,
hiding a smile. "How are ya doing?" She asked her sister with a smile.
A look of relief washed over Mala's face when
she saw her sister. She managed a small smile and said, "I'm so nervous. What
if I mess up?"
"What if you do mess up?" Julie asked. "So what?
Just keep going and pretend that you meant for it to sound like that. That's
what I did, and it didn't turn out so bad."
Mala's eyes widened and her jaw dropped slightly
as she soaked in what Julie had just told her. "You mean you messed up when
Julie just smiled without answering and gave
her sister a supportive hug. "You'll do fine. Trust me. But I have to get back
to my seat now because the show will be starting soon. Good luck!"
The show was just starting by the time Julie
got back to her seat.
"Welcome to the Twelfth Annual Neoschool Seasonal
Talent Show!" A strict-looking yellow Lenny said into a microphone on the stage.
"We have some wonderful and talented performers backstage ready to entertain
you. We ask that any food in the auditorium at this time is chewed quietly and
we also would like to add that if you have any drinks with you, please don't
slurp them loudly. Also, if you witness a bad performance, please refrain from
throwing any vegetables or waffles at the contestants as it is poor manners.
Thank you and enjoy the show!" The audience applauded politely as the Lenny
went off to the side of the stage and announced the first performer.
As the first contestant, a pineapple Chia, sang
some song that Julie had never heard of, she scanned the program looking for
Mala's name. Julie made a face as she saw that her sister's name was second
to last. She went off on a daydream seeing her sister waiting in a corner in
agony, alone and afraid, as contestant after contestant went through their performances
and came off, relieved that it was done. She was thrown back into reality as
the audience clapped for the first contestant.
Bobby squirmed in his seat and Julie leaned with
her head in one hand as they watched the performances. There was a jelly Chomby
that could juggle and a lot of dance numbers. They waited in agony as a Cybunny
violinist butchered a once-beautiful piece of music. Finally it was Mala's turn.
Mala slowly shuffled out onto the stage with
her clarinet in one hand and her music in the other. Placing her music on the
stand, she took a moment to look around the auditorium. She had never realized
just how big it really was. Mala glanced at the panel of judges sitting just
off of the stage. They were waiting patiently for her to begin, as was the audience.
Taking a big breath, she put the clarinet mouthpiece
in her mouth and began playing. The song was a classic Seasonal carol that was
made especially popular by Jazzmosis a couple of years ago. The notes flowed
out smoothly as her fingers expertly moved up and down, alternating between
covering the keys and keeping them open. She thought about how far she had come
since her brother and sister began helping her a couple of years ago. She realized
how lucky she was to have siblings who cared for her. With that extra discovery,
she finished her piece with an extra dynamic on a note that came out perfectly
It seemed like the audience exploded in applause
as Julie and Bobby jumped out of their seats clapping like mad for their sister.
Julie was so proud of Mala and was yelling out, "I taught her everything she
Bobby was shoving Julie and yelling back, "I
taught her everything else she knows!" All the while they were cheering and
shouting as loud as they could, until they lost their voices.
Mala took a bow and quickly backed out behind
the curtain, so happy that she was done.
After the last performer had finished, the yellow
Lenny walked back onto the center of the stage. "Well, we had a great performance
tonight and I hoped you enjoyed it. We decided not to judge anything this year.
Good bye and walk safely."
The crowd replied to that remark with a series
of "What?" and "Aww…" clearly disappointed.
The Lenny looked at the crowd and said, "I'm
just kidding. I know, I know, I'm such a joker, right?" He took a moment to
laugh at his joke then continued, "Well, we're going to get the results from
the judges right now, so all you contestants can begin to cross your fingers
and hope for the best."
He walked over to the panel of judges and they
placed an envelope in his wing. Walking back, he broke the seal on the envelope
and pulled out a piece of paper. "We'll start with the third place winner. Please
give a round of applause for Bob, the Orange Chia, on his wonderful performance
on the triangle!"
Bob walked up looking really surprised as he
was handed a miniscule bronze trophy the size of a dead radish.
"And the second place trophy goes to…Mala, the
red Yurble, with her superb performance on the clarinet!"
Mala walked onto the stage, looking slightly
disappointed, but with a big smile on her face, and accepted her silver trophy.
It was a pretty good size, and it appeared to be a good weight, as Mala had
trouble carrying it over to stand next to the Chia.
"The first place prize goes to Charlie, the juggling
jelly Chomby! Please give him and all of our winners a grand applause!" The
Lenny continued as Charlie walked out and shook his hand. He was given a huge
golden trophy that was bigger than he was.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Mala slowly walked outside of the entrance to
the school and began searching for her family. She spotted them next to a tree
in the yard. Julie ran over at full speed, followed closely behind by Bobby,
with their owner bringing up the rear.
Julie ran up and half-attacked, half-hugged her
sister. "You did great, Mala!" Julie exclaimed. "I'm so proud of you!"
Mala smiled grimly and replied sadly, "But I
didn't even win."
"You may not have won the actually first place,
but we thought that you were the best out there. Couldn't you hear us yelling
for you?" Bobby retorted happily, his eyes sparkling.
"You did wonderfully, Mala!" Their owner praised
and gave her a hug.
"I am still sorry that I didn't win first place,
though, Julie. I guess I broke the winning streak for you clarinet," Mala told
her sister, looking at her feet.
Julie glanced from her brother to her father
and reached into a bag that was hanging on her arm. She took out a makeshift
trophy in the shape of a clarinet made with wood that they had bought in a store.
It was painted gold and said on it "You won!" Julie handed it to her sister
and said, "This is from all of us to you. You won in our eyes!"
Mala took the trophy that had been hand-made
by her siblings. She traced the outline of the poorly cut-in keys and ran her
finger down the uneven paint job. The "You won!" looked like "Too vom!" Tears
filled Mala's eyes as she set down her silver trophy and cradled her family's.
"It's beautiful," she whispered.