The Adventures of Invisible GirlEdit
Starring Mary Alice Somers and the iCarly Wiki Users
Hey, it's Invisible Girl. Read and comment.
Chapter Two, The Blog
As was the custom, my weekend was passing slowly and uneventfully.
By noontime on Saturday morning, I was done with all of my chores including clearing a pathway in my messy room. By the evening, I had done all of my homework. Right on time to help my grandma fix dinner before I had to get to my job. There was definitely no time for dreaming up ways to get rid of Susanna or having invisible powers on Saturdays.
I had worked out what my schedule would be from the moment I stepped into this old place eight years ago. I had made up my mind that I would make myself useful and to never be idle in this house. Mom and Dad would want me to do this. To ease the burden on my grandparents in any way that I could in return for their kindness.
I had spent my Saturdays like this ever since and I never complained. I liked to think that my parents would be proud.
I entered the kitchen to be hit with the smell of steaming vegetables. It wasn't pleasant, but I knew my manners. "What smells so good?" I asked as I washed my hands at the faucet.
"Greens. You don't have to stick around to help, they're almost finished."
My grandma was standing over the pot, stirring it's contents without even looking at me. It was one thing to be invisible in school or online, but when my own grandmother wouldn't look me in the eye...I shouldn't have to work so hard for a little bit of attention.
I took a disappointed breath before stepping up to peer into the pot myself.
"Those look amazing."
She suddenly stopped stirring and her eyes met mine. Her eyes were like my mother's. Like mine. I felt as if I were staring into a mirror. Would I be this way in fifty years? Tired, worn, and unopen to affection with nobody to love but my overworked husband and pesky granddaughter? My grandma hardly ever smiled. I'm pretty sure she never laughed. But she was stable and responsible and everything I hoped I would be one day. Maybe to be like her wouldn't be so bad.
I was stunned to see her hard eyes filling with tears.
"You know, Iggy, your mother hated greens..."she shook her head. "Whenever I made them for dinner she'd refuse to eat."
My mother did that?
"Yes she did," Grandma responded as if reading my mind. "My daughter. My Alice." She was looking fondly into the pot. "It's just the funniest thing in the world to me that her daughter likes these."
I swallowed. My grandmother hardly ever talked about Mom.
She set the spoon down shakily. "Either way. I'll see you home at eight-thirty."
"I can't wait to get back and have some of those."
The lie was worth the pleased look on her face. From the lines around her mouth, it was apparent that years back she just might have smiled more often.
"Well then, I'll be sure to fix you a nice large helping."
I think it's safe to say we shared a little moment. Her eyes were alight as they often were whenever I showed appreciation to her cooking and she gave me a little hint of a smile. It left as quickly as it came, though. She cleared her throat.
"Get on to Winnifred's now. I don't want you being tardy, young lady. You have a job to do."
"And where's your rain jacket? It looks like it's about to pour out!"
"I left it on the porch. Bye, Grandma."
"Iggy," she called just as I was about to walk out the door.
If I didn't leave now I would definitely be late. Her eyes examined my face with heavy scrutiny and just shook her head. "Nevermind. Get going." She looked like she wanted to say so much more, but I did as I was told.
I searched the front porch for my rain jacket but couldn't find it. I was constantly misplacing things but today just wasn't the day for that. It was clear from looking at the sky that it was going to rain and soon. If I went back inside, my grandma would yell at me for both losing my things and being late. Walking in the rain wouldn't kill me, I figured. I pulled the hood over my head and started down the road at a fast pace.
Maybe I could get to the house before the sky unleashed it's misery on my head. It was hot and humid out. My skin was damp and felt as if it were crawling. I suddenly wondered how terrible I must look right now. I didn't need a mirror to know that my hair was a mess, and I didn't even get a chance to change out of my ratty work jeans.
I jogged the last three blocks in the heavy rain, cursing when I slipped and scraped my knees on the road. By the time I got to my destination, I'd be a disaster, that was for sure.
Every other weekend, I babysat at my enemy from school Susanna McDougal's house. She had a seven year-old sister, Dara, and she was just as much of a nightmare as her older sister.
I think that at some point in our lives we all meet a Dara. The spoiled sort, getting whatever they want, whenever they want without a care in the world. I didn't like her and she didn't like me. But I got paid twenty dollars to watch her so I put up with her, and I never told on her when she ate dessert before dinner so she put up with me.
We kind of stayed out of each other's way and made it work.
When I got to the McDougal house, my sweatshirt was soaked completely through with rainwater. The sound of the heavy drops hummed against the roof overlooking the front porch. I knocked on the door and shivered. For once in my life, I couldn't wait to get inside of this house.
Susanna's mother answered the door.
Winnifred McDougal, a tall, beautiful woman with grace to match Susanna's. She smiled at me as always. The thing with this woman was that she was under the impression that Susanna and I were still best friends. I guess her daughter hadn't found it necessary to inform her that we weren't exactly buddies anymore.
"Why hello, Mary Alice!" she beamed.
"Hi Ms. Winnie."
"Come on in. Dara! The baby-sitter is here!" I stepped into the room and pulled down my hoodie. The front of the house opened into the living room and play area, which was completely cluttered in Dara's toys. The air was cool inside, which made me shiver even more.
"It's been awhile since we've had you over over. To do something besides babysitting, I mean. Susanna's been so busy with school and I imagine so have you, but I miss hearing you girls chatter every second of the day up in Suze's room," Ms. Winnie was starting to frown a little. "You should come to dinner one of these days. You and your grandparents."
"That sounds nice," I was careful not to make eye contact. Susanna's mother had no idea that her daughter was my tormenter and somehow I knew Susanna wanted it to stay that way. I needed to keep it quiet or she'd definitely find some way to make me pay...
Susanna's mother's smile was wider than usual and from the way she was looking at me, I could tell she had something she wanted to say. When she saw that I wasn't going to ask, she practically bursted.
"Oh, I suppose you don't know yet, unless Susanna told you the news!" Her right hand rested on her stomach. "News?" I asked, though my brain was slowly putting together the pieces. My mind was still foggy from the rain.
"Mommy's having a baby," Dara spoiled what would have otherwise been grandly announced by her mother. Dara had come out of the kitchen, in her hand was a lemon square which she had been eating. I could tell from the crumbs around her mouth and on her jumper.
"Well, yes," Ms. Winnie stroked her midsection. "Eleven weeks pregnant. I can't believe Susanna didn't say anything. How unlike her. She's told practically everybody on our street..." She frowned again.
"Uh she might have mentioned it now that I think about it. That's great. Congratulations. Ready for dinner, Dara?" I said, changing the subject.
She nodded, biting into more lemon square.
"Oh sweetie, you were supposed to eat dinner first," Ms. Winnie scolded.
"I'll take it from here, Mrs. McDougal. Have a nice evening."
She smiled at me."I'm so thankful Susanna has you in her life. Dara, too. Take care." She patted my arm and left.
I let out a deep breath. Dara stared at me with her large eyes, challenging me to make her have dinner instead of all the lemon squares she wanted.
"So are you ready to be a big sister?" I asked her just for the sake of making conversation.
"No! I don't want a stupid baby to come and take away all my toys and attention. And I'm not eating dinner." She stomped off into the den to watch TV.
I couldn't say that I blamed Dara. What would it be like for Susanna to have another sibling? Imagine having three Susannas instead of two. I hope I won't have to babysit that one, too.
I didn't like babies much, whether they were related to Susanna McDougal or not. I'm completely baffled as to why adults insist on having them. They're everything a person could hate. Loud, self-centered, and they drool. But to a mother, the creature is 'sweet' or 'adorable.' But the truth is, they just make our lives hell. When I see mothers doing this, I just roll my eyes and I think, Just wait till the baby grows up, lady. You won't think it's so sweet anymore." These women feel the need to give birth because it's 'Oh, so beautiful' when really these little bundles of joy cost a fortune and take away your sanity.
Maybe it's because my parents were gone before I could have a sibling. Maybe I was a bitter only child. Who knew?
After making sure that Dara was comfortable in front of the TV, I sat in front of the McDougal's family desktop computer. Ms. Winnie didn't mind that I used it when I was here. I always pretended that I was doing homework, but mostly I just got on the wiki.
I logged in and entered the chat room.
"Hi," I typed.
It was Saturday night, so chat was getting kind of full. There were sixteen people here including myself. There would be a new iCarly tonight so I guessed that there'd be twenty or more people on by the time eight o'clock rolled around.
My comment disappeared in seconds. Well, it's not like I didn't expect that to happen.
I took a break from the computer to inch into the kitchen. Maybe Dara wouldn't notice if I took a lemon square. The kitchen smelled like the freshly baked dessert. Nice and lemony. The room was warm like a fireplace. I stopped shivering after seconds of standing in the doorway.
I cut a piece of lemon square and nibbled it, looking around me. This place hadn't changed a bit in the last three years. I used to spend every weeknight and all evening on weekends here with Susanna. It was routine for the first five years of my life in this town.
Susanna had saved me in more ways than one. My parents had just died, I was the new girl in a small town, I didn't know anybody. Who knows what would have happened to me if she didn't notice me, befriend me. In a way, Susanna was the first person who saw me.
I remember when I met her. Third grade. Her blonde hair was curled and shiny and I couldn't stop staring at it. My own hair was always a dank brown washed up color, but it wasn't until I saw Susanna's hair that I truly started to dislike my own.
She was sitting in front of me right before class started. Everyone was talking and ignoring me, but I was too busy staring at Susanna's hair to really care.
"You have pretty hair," I said suddenly.
She turned around, looking at me for the first time. It was scary how much she looked like Dara back then; the only difference being that Dara's hair was a dark brown like her mom's.
Susanna smiled at me. "That's what my mom tells me."
"I wish I were blonde. And your eyes are so blue. Mine are just brown...." Since that day, we were friends.
That really says something about Susanna. Give her a compliment and she'll be your friend. I didn't know that at the time. I always had a feeling that she liked me for me back then. Maybe she started to like me later on, but that's not how it started out. I was the girl who carried her things and told her how pretty she was and in return she'd sit with me at lunch.
I shook my head, looking around the kitchen. The wallpaper, bright blue and peeling. The paint chipping in the corner. I could name every detail in this kitchen and many other rooms in this house if I tried. This place was more home to me than my grandparents house. Why had that still not changed? Susanna and I weren't friends anymore.
The table where Susanna eats dinner every night...she used to paint my nails at this table. And we'd bake cookies together using that oven. Nothing had changed yet so much had at the same time.
Finally, I headed back to the computer. I watched the iCarly chat move rapidly for awhile (everyone was discussing favorite ice cream flavors, a conversation I might have joined) when suddenly I noticed a box at the bottom of the screen. I clicked it. A private message.
No one ever PMed me, but users on this chat did it regularly. I didn't know whether I should be excited or to cry. The user that sent me the message was called @S.M.C.brainy. I knew for sure that this person wasn't a regular user. S.M.C.brainy didn't have an avatar either.
"Hi...O_o" I replied, geniunely shocked.
"You looked like a newb, too so I thought we could talk xP" S.M.C.brainy wrote.
I felt my heart speed up. I had never thought to talk to other newbs before. I was always so concerned with getting in with the popular crowd.
"Sure we can! :D" I typed back.
"Isn't it kinda depressing that other users won't talk to us so we have to talk to each other? xP"
"Yeah. But maybe you won't be so bad :)" I wrote.
"It's cool that we could talk to each other in all, but we shouldn't have to be ignored."
I agreed with S.M.C.brainy and all, but I wanted to get to know this person and not just talk about the popular users all day.
"So what's your username stand for?" I asked.
"It's my initials. You can call me Sarah :)"
So S.M.C.brainy was a girl. I was kind of happy. It'd been so long since I had a girl to talk to. I wasn't sure if she was my age, but I thought I'd ask later once we got to know each other more. That way it wouldn't be creepy.
"You must be smart Sarah if your name has 'brainy' in it xD" I said.
"I'm not that smart. I get good grades I guess though xP"
Sarah sure used "xP" a lot.
We chatted for a little bit before I heard Dara calling me and I had to go help her clean up some juice that she spilled. I quickly typed "brb" and rushed to clean up the mess and get back to the computer.
"Back :D" I typed.
"I g2g in a few minutes :(" Sarah informed me.
I felt disappointed.
"When will you be on again?" I asked.
"Maybe tomorrow. Idk."
"Don't leave me alone with all the popular people x(" I know I shouldn't be begging her to stay if she really had to go, but I was really just starting to feel like I had a friend.
"Sorry. I have church in the morning and then school xP"
After a second, I hestiated to type, "Do you like school?"
"It's okay..." She replied.
I was afraid that I had offended her by asking such a personal question, but then she said, "I get bullied a lot xP"
Was I finally meeting someone that was like me? No one else ever seemed to have the same problems that I did.
"Me too :/" I typed quickly. "Sometimes I feel so...idk xD"
"Invisible?" She questioned.
"...yeah..."I felt myself beginning to smile. It was such a nice feeling to actually talk to someone. So this is why everyone liked PMing so much...
"It's not just in school, it sucks being invisible here, too. No one cares about me on this chat. It feels just like high school xD" Sarah said.
"I feel the exact same way :/"
"Someone should do something about it. Ugh, I g2g. See you tomorrow maybe?"
She logged off before I could say anything more. I guessed she really had to be in a hurry.
I stared at her last words awhile longer before exiting the chat.
"Someone should do something about it," she had said.
It was so easy for the other users to make conversation with each other, but what about us? Us nobodies... newbs...we're another story.
After meeting Sarah, it was apparent. It wasn't just me left out on the iCarly Wiki. There were dozens of other users just like me. I call us "no-faces" because it's like we don't even exist.
I closed my eyes, feeling an idea coming on. I got those a lot. They never really amounted to anything but...you know I think I might be onto something this time around..
What if there were a way for people who are ignored, like me, to be heard? What if I could find a way to call out to those users who have it made and let them know that we exist, too? That we have faces and that we have voices, and...
What if I could speak for us all? All of us who want to be somebody, even if our background or appearance won't allow us to in real life.
I really could do this. I could change a world. An online world, yes. But maybe these people would learn a little something from me. Maybe they should be told that it isn't cool to be left out and forgotten. Make them think. Make them see.
I would write a blog, I decided. Blogs were a big thing on the iCarly Wiki. Either they were super popular and everyone read them, or they just go "plop!" and everyone ignores them.
What if no one reads my blog or no one cares?
Well even then, I have Sarah. And I'll try and talk to other newbs, too. Maybe we'll be our own clique. So what if my blog went "plop?"
Well, I'll leave that descision up to fate, I decided.
Right now, I have a blog to publish.
As I typed away, I felt empowered. In my own way, I would be a hero. Like Invisible Woman, who used her own invisibilty for good things, too.
Whether anybody would care about my work or not, doing something to change things felt good.
A thank you to everyone who liked chapter one and commented.
Invisible Girl, signing out for now.