The Evaluation Two

The Loop

Hello Everyone,

Hope the week has been coming on well so far? 

Here's the second part of the story. Do enjoy 🎉🎉

                       §§§§§§§

The man peered closely at her/him. “Are you okay?? For a while there you scared me.” He flexed the hand that David had nearly broken with a slight wince.  

“I’m fine,” David/Cassie muttered. “Sorry about the hand.”

“No worries.” From somewhere a slight chiming came up and he thrust a square object at her. “Here, your phone has been ringing.”

She took the object, turning it this way and that way in amazement and confusion. “What should I do?”

He shrugged. “It’s your mum, you might want to get that, or maybe not.”

Her eyes rounded in surprise. “How?”

He observed her. “What is wrong with you?” he asked, thrusting out his hand, “Give me the damn phone.” She dropped it into his palm watching as he slid a finger across the face and held it to his ear.

“Hello Mum. How are you? Please hold on for her.” He handed her the phone, she took it, hesitating before holding it gingerly to her ear.

A volley of fast words hit her ears and she drew the phone away. “Cassie, I’ve been trying to reach you. How are you?” without waiting for an answer she launched on. “The party is in a few hours and I can’t even decide if to go with outfit 1 or 2 or 3. I know you like outfit 2 but don’t you think outfit 1 will be better?” She fell silent, as though waiting for a response, then she said. “You should tell me what you think. Don’t be silent.”

Cassie cleared her throat. “Nothing Ma.”

There was a sudden change of tone, her voice grew softer, slightly teasing. “Did you and Ike have another quarrel?”

Cassie smiled. Ike, now she knew his name. “No Ma.”

“What’s with the ‘Ma’, that’s new!”

Cassie let out a chuckle, shocking herself at how fake and forced she sounded.

“I keep telling you not to settle if you are unhappy. I mean, what’s the point of fighting every time when you might as well end it now and get it over with. Your happiness and sanity, my dear, is more important.”

Cassie let out a soft sigh. “We are fine. I think you should wear outfit 2.”

Laughter erupted from her mother’s end, long and high pitched. “You are always so defensive of him. Well, outfit 2 it is, baby. See you in a bit.”

What had he stumbled into, he wondered. So, she was Cassie, and he was Ike, they weren’t even married yet, but they lived together, the phones they used now was much smaller than the ones they had from when he was alive and he was certain that so many strange and wondrous things had been invented.  He/she would have to be careful so as not to arouse any suspicions by saying or doing strange or outlandish things. 

She wandered around the room, casting her eyes about for any clues as to who she was. She looked at the phone she was still clutching and the time and date flashed; 10th Jan, 2020. For a brief moment the room grew small and tight, then began to whirl around her, she felt herself falling, suddenly, strong arms caught her and Ike’s concerned voice queried: “Are you ok?”

She nodded, allowing him lead her to the bed. “Yes. I just felt dizzy.”

“Are you sure? I know the party is in a few hours but we can stay back if you don’t want to.”

She thought about her mother, how excited she had sounded chattering on the phone and she shook her head. “I’m fine.”

An hour into the party, she thought to herself that if any other person commented how there was something different about her, she would run screaming out of the house. Before the party, Ike had made about a million comments on how different she seemed. In their chauffeur driven car on their way to the party, he had turned to her and said, “You seem very off. Are you good?” She had done her best to give him a bright reassuring smile. 

At the party, her mother had almost gone into shock on seeing her. “Wha…whaa happened?”

Cassie had said to herself, I should hug her. She is my mother. And as she stepped forward to embrace her, her mother deftly stepped aside and instead patted her cheeks. “You know I hate hugs.” She looked at her, long and searching. “This wasn’t one of the outfits we picked. And for God’s sake why didn’t you put on any makeup?!

Ike sighed softly beside her. “I’ve been asking her the same thing. She said she wasn’t in the mood. I even asked her to call that girl from Tara who sometimes does her make-up and she refused.” His shoulders lifted in an elegant shrug.

Her mother eyed her despondently. “You are not in the mood? Today of all days? That is why we have make-up artists, you could have called the Tara girl.”

Cassie hung her head. How could she explain that though Ike had suggested that, she didn’t know how to use the phone. He was already looking at her funny, asking him to show her how to use the phone would definitely raise questions.

Her mother looked down, noticing for the first time the footwear she had on. “And what is this you have on?”

“Shoes,” she replied, ignoring the scathing scrutiny. Those shoes were the only sensible pair in the closet, which contained perhaps more than a 100 pairs of shoes that looked like torture devices. There was no way she was wearing those.

Her mother began to move away. “Follow me, at least we could do with some face beat.”

Cassie trailed behind her, wondering if a face beat was some sort of punishment for showing up looking the way she did. Twenty minutes later, they emerged, Cassie now had on some make-up and she had to resist the urge to wipe her face.

Her mother rushed off to greet some guests leaving her standing at the edge, eyes on the look-out for Ike and wondering why she had been dropped into this day and time. She caught sight of him, arm in arm with a girl who seemed endlessly talkative as they walked towards her. She observed them, the very familiar way her arm snuck into the crook of his arm, her breasts appearing to almost pop out from above the gown that seemed many sizes too small and her overly made up face. When they reached her, the other girl rushed forward to embrace her in a tight hug. “Babe, I’ve been trying to reach you all day. I had wardrobe issues.”

She pouted, stepping back to get a better look at her. “Cassie Dear!” She cocked her head and pursed her lips. “You look lovely. Different though, but lovely.”

Cassie allowed a small smile stretch her lips. “Thank you dear.” She hoped someone would mention this girls name, she hated this disadvantaged position, everyone seemed to know her but she had to grope for bits and pieces of this puzzle.

The girl continued. “But this isn’t the outfit we bought for the party,” she said with some measure of disapproval.

Cassie shrugged. “I changed my mind.” She smiled, leaning slightly into Ike. “Please excuse us. We have to go find my mother.”

“Is everything okay?” Ike asked as they walked away.

“Yes.”

“Are you sure? I’ve never seen you this cold to your twin sister. You practically acted like she was some random person.”

 

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