December 4, 2016, Pinehurst, MA
“That absolute bitch!”
Allison was fuming. Not only was she cold because it was the middle of December. Not only was she annoyed that Francis had decided in his infinite wisdom to travel with the boys to Pinehurst; there was also that shit with her mother. She knew she had to tell Vinny about it but her baby brother was just so...he was just so Vin. She didn’t think he would handle it well. And then to top it all off that Pinehurst slut Bianca Washington had stolen her fucking song!
“This is unacceptable, ladies!” Ally looked down at her assembled squad and scanned them one by one, looking for any sign of weakness. A mass bout of the flu had struck Edenridge High like a bolt of lightning and her Varsity cheerleaders were mostly suffering; leaving Ally with the freshmen squad as her back up. This wasn’t a terrible thing, there was a lot of talent on the team but it was difficult nonetheless. Allison had spent weeks training the young fresh faced ladies a flawless routine but low and behold goddamn Bianca Washington had up and stolen their music. If the Celtic’s were to dance to the same tune as the Pinehurst Monarchs, how were they going to win the Shining Star competition?!
She needed to win this. Pinehurst had won the last two competitions and Rosefell had won the one before that! This was Allison’s senior year at Edenridge, it was her last chance to make an impact. Reagan was going to be a doctor, Vivi’s drive would surely take her places and hell, Francis had gotten into Yale. Allison had yet to hear back from any of her colleges of choice and although there was still plenty she was starting to get a bit worried. She didn’t want to become another statistic, another prom Queen who never left her hometown, got fat and had a bunch of kids with some Neanderthal who worked part time at the Stop n' Shop. Ally had to get out, to be someone, she had plans. Those plans started with winning this damn competition.
“Mei! I know you’re all leather jackets, Hayley Williams, I’m such a badass but please, for the love of baby Jesus, tell me your encyclopaedic music brain has something we can work with in there? Something with a similar beat so we don’t have to change the routine?”
Tying up the laces of her converse sneakers, Mei looked up towards the taller girl and smiled. “Let me scan through my phone and see what I’ve got” She reached into her duffel bag and began to scan through Spotify to see what she could find. It was very last minute but Mei had a mind for this sort of thing, she just didn’t have a lot of time to dwell, one wrong move and Allison would have her ass cleaning the basketball players' used underwear.
Turning back to the rest of the squad, Ally tried to put all other thoughts from her mind and focus on what she could control; how her team looked. “Girls, make sure you wear your hair down. Down is sexy, up is somebody's housewife with four kids and a mortgage. These judges aren’t gonna give us any extra points for baking them a casserole. Baby oil those legs, get those tans even and pad those bras. Sex sells!”
Ally scanned her youthful team again, with an almost wide eyed, manic stare. "Jillian! The make up, it’s wrong wrong wrong! Pushing by a terrified Katherine Dunbar she began to ratch through her purse, throwing all of the girl's personal belongings onto the floor. Finally, she pulled a small lipstick out from the bottom of the bag and threw it at Jillian. "With your skin tone and that hair-- I’m totally jelly, by the way--, you should only ever wear red lipstick. Trust me.” Her chocolate-coloured eyes moved to the other redhead in the room, Caitlin. ”That goes double for you, CeCe.”
As soon as Allison turned her back on her, Caitlin's cheeks couldn't help but flush at the older girl's words. There was something about the way she'd said that statement-- with the cryptic undertone and the knowing, almost smug look-- that made Cece wonder whether Ally was aware of what happened around her more than she was letting on. The cheer captain's remark made Caitlin replay in her head all of the interactions she'd had around Ally with others, trying to figure out whether something had slipped through the cracks but failing to pinpoint any particular instance. Whether it was all in her paranoid head or she was correct in her assumptions, this encounter only strengthened Cece's resolve to keep a tight leash on what she did or shared with and around the team.
She moved her way over to the blonde bombshell that was Lanie Lancaster and scanned her up her down. "Where is your ass, Elaine? I told you to get your squats in. You look like a stick.”
Lanie scoffed in disbelief and rolled her eyes at her mentor, the annoyance painted all over her delicate face. "Well I'm sorry puberty hasn't caught up with me yet! We're not all blessed with !" she argued back, positively fuming. During the times Allison acted neurotic when under pressure, the blonde girl often tried to not take what she said seriously. She knew sometimes. That being said, Lanie still didn't appreciate Ally broadcasting her insecurities to the rest of the team like that. Out of everyone else, it was Ally who knew firsthand how much work it took Lanie to avoid constantly comparing and belittling herself when thinking of the squad of beautiful girls surrounding her.
Cupping the young girl's face in her palms, Allison looked deep into her eyes. "Lanie, baby. Please make sure you’re eating”
Elaine raised an eyebrow. "What the fuck makes you think I'm not eati-"
Interjecting into the conversation before Allison went all den mother, the Asian teen spoke loudly. ”I’ve got the song, Ally” Mei took out her AirPods and turned up the volume so the rest of the squad could listen to her chosen track.
“The fuck is this?”
”I promise you, Allison. No one else tonight is using this song. The beat is perfect for the moves. We just step up our rhythm a bit and we’re golden”
Allison shot daggers at Mei for a second before kissing the girl on the top of her forehead. ”Great work Mei-Day but if we fuck this up, it’s on you”
Emerging from behind a locker, Babs Copeland, guidance counsellor, cheerleading squad coach, former Shining Star winner of both first place and best choreography, Allison’s hero. She was still a ravenous beauty and indeed some boys at Edenridge High got themselves appointments with the counsellor purely to gaze upon her visage. In the boys locker room, there was a famous saying in regards to Miss Copeland; Shame she’s gay
“Ladies, you’re up in five. I hope you’re ready.”
In a panic, Allison looked to her girls and pointed at the door. “Five minutes. I want you all out there ready to break some hearts” She barged by Olivia Madden and through the side door to the parking lot.
She almost side swiped that tall lanky freshman, what was his name, Charlie something? And some girl he was with before making it to her car and climbing into the passenger side. Allison opened up the glove compartment, allowing a small bag of white powder and a rolled up dollar bill to fall into her hand.
Just a small bump to get me going, then I’ll get the good stuff from Rey after we win