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19 February 2011 @ 04:32 pm
Snob  
Title/Prompt - Snob
Author - isabelquinn
Word count - 5,241
Rating - G
Summary - Shannon's attitude towards new girls undergoes significant change after her experience with Sally White.
Link to table - Link
Author's note - So, this fic was originally intended to be Kristy and the Snobs from Shannon's pov. But for Shannon's pov to make sense at all, we have to go much further back than I intended to the beginning of the Sally White incident (from Shannon's chapters of The Baby-Sitters Remember). And I ended up spending most of my time in that story. Which is awfully brief in canon, so there was a lot to work with. I originally intended to still continue with the entirety of Kristy and the Snobs, but I don't think I will anymore. Mostly because there are some canon issues that make it impossible to write it from Shannon's pov without seriously messing with the storyline and events of Kristy and the Snobs. And I like the ending place for this fic, so I think I'll just leave well enough alone. I'm happy to elaborate in the comments if people care to know the details ;)
Thanks to ozqueen for beta-ing!



Tick. Tick. Tick.

Shannon Kilbourne picked at her dinner. Half an hour earlier, she’d been ravenous. But there was something about family dinners these days that completely ruined her appetite. She glanced at her father. He was calmly eating heaped forkfuls of risotto, as though determined to ignore the oppressive weight in the room.
“Maria,” he said, “Did you end up making the swim team?”
Maria gave a small grin. “Yup. I start practice on Monday. Twice a week.”
Mr. Kilbourne chuckled. “By the end of the year, all that chlorine will have turned your hair green.”
Maria giggled, and started arranging her mushrooms into the shape of a face.
“Maria, don’t play with your food.” Mrs. Kilbourne’s admonishment was followed by a long silence, punctuated by the relentless ticking of the dining room clock.
Shannon nervously tucked a stray blonde curl behind her ear. She wished it wasn’t Friday night. One of the best things about school starting was the chance to get out of the house for awhile, to escape the palpable tension in the air. But the first weekend of the school year loomed ahead of her and she had no reason to leave the house. She didn’t even have any baby-sitting jobs to look forward to over the next two days.
“How about you, Tiffany?” Mrs. Kilbourne spoke cautiously. “How was your first week of school?”
Tiffany shrugged. “School was school.”
Mrs. Kilbourne looked at her oldest daughter almost pleadingly. “Shannon?”
Shannon looked up from her half-full plate. “Mr. Katz wants me to join the astronomy club,” she offered.
Her mom nodded, but she didn’t appear to know how to respond. Once again, a silence fell that seemed almost solid. It remained unbroken for the rest of the meal. All the Kilbournes kept their eyes on their plates, listening to the seconds tick away.

 

  

Shannon spent the weekend locked in her bedroom. The early September days were stifling, but her stuffy bedroom was preferable to the rest of the house. She didn’t have nearly enough homework to do, but she managed to keep herself busy.

Sunday afternoon brought the first cool breeze in days. Shannon felt it waft through her window and dropped her pencil with a sigh of relief. Abandoning her math homework, she moved to her window and stood where the cool air was finally blowing. She fiddled with her curtain, idly gazing at two girls on the sidewalk.
I wonder how the concert went last night, she wondered, her eye lingering on the taller girl’s bright turquoise overalls. Meg had gone to see Bruce Springsteen with Sally White. They even had backstage passes, courtesy of Sally’s mom. Meg had probably been out of her mind with excitement. Shannon had no idea – she had barely seen Meg all week.

It was all so confusing. Why did Sally hang out exclusively with Meg? Shannon bit her lip, watching the two girls slip something into mailboxes. Sally was new at Stoneybrook Day School; she could have started the year with a whole group of friends. Shannon, Polly, Lindsey, Greer and Meg would have been happy to include Sally in their circle. Instead, she had stolen Meg away. Shannon turned back to her desk, feeling more than a little confused. Math may not be the most exciting subject, but at least she could understand it.

 

  

By the time the bus pulled up at SDS the next morning, Meg was almost crying. She’d spent the bus trip talking about Sally, and pouring out what had happened at the concert while Shannon, Polly and Lindsey listened with sympathy. The four pairs of eyes were constantly flicking towards the back of the bus where Sally was giggling and whispering with Greer.
“So, I don’t know,” said Meg, with a watery sniffle. “I guess she just decided that I wasn’t sophisticated enough for her. She didn’t talk to me all weekend. And she hasn’t even looked at me all morning.”
Lindsey gave Meg’s ponytail an affectionate tug. “We still love you, Meg.”
“Yeah,” grinned Polly. “Honestly, I think I might’ve stopped being friends with you if you hadn’t squealed when you saw Bruce backstage.”
Shannon laughed, and Meg gave them a wavery smile. “Thanks, guys.”
As the bus lurched to a stop, the girls grabbed their backpacks. SDS had regulation bags, but by eighth grade the students were well-practiced at telling their identical backpacks apart. Shannon fell into step beside Meg, whose eyes were still downcast.
“Meg,” said Shannon cautiously, “can I ask you something?”
“Yeah, go ahead.”
Shannon paused. She wasn’t sure how to ask this without sounding insensitive.
“What exactly is it about Sally? Why did you only want to hang out with her last week?”
“I’m sorry,” replied Meg quickly. “I didn’t mean to abandon you guys like that –”
“No no, it’s okay. I’m not accusing you of anything.” Shannon glanced over at Sally and Greer, who were huddled next to Sally’s open locker. “I just want to understand what it is about her. I mean, I get that she’s fascinating...” Shannon trailed off. Her mind wandered over what Meg had told them about Sally’s house: the valuable art, the tribal masks, the fleet of racing horses, the telescope in the attic, the hairless cat, a mom who can get backstage passes to Bruce Springsteen concerts…
Meg smiled sadly. “I guess that’s it. She’s fascinating. I guess it made me feel good. I liked that someone like her would choose me as a friend. I felt bad for Lindsey when Sally stopped talking to her, but…” Meg shrugged, a look of guilt settling across her face.
Shannon smiled at Meg, hoping it conveyed that she wasn’t mad. She was beginning to understand why everyone found Sally was so alluring. And as they passed Sally and Greer, she distinctly felt jealousy starting to bubble up. Why was Greer the chosen one?

  

 

“Hot dogs!” cheered Linny Papadakis. “I love hot dogs!”
Hannie was already halfway out the kitchen door. “I need to get my puppy ears!” she called over her shoulder.
Shannon looked at Linny. “Puppy ears?”
Linny rolled his eyes. “She has a headband with dog’s ears in her dress up box. She always wears it when we eat hot dogs.”
Shannon laughed. “Sounds like fun. Can you carry the buns to the table for me?”
Linny obliged, maintaining near-constant chatter about the best way to eat a hot dog, while Shannon expertly navigated the buttons on the Papadakises’ microwave. Every household on McLelland Road seemed to have a radically different microwave. It never ceased to frustrate Shannon that every family she baby-sat for had a microwave with different quirks.
“How’re you doing, Sari?”
Sari was sitting patiently on the kitchen floor, playing with her shoelaces.
“Hot dog!” she beamed.
“Mmmm, hot dogs,” agreed Shannon, picking up Sari and strapping her into a booster seat. “And you get to have yours all chopped up. That’s pretty special.”
The microwave let out a series of shrill beeps.
“HANNIE, THEY’RE READY!” bellowed Linny.
“Really? That was fast!” Hannie skipped back into the kitchen, one eye obscured by the fuzzy brown ears flopping over her face.
“Your mom already cooked them,” reminded Shannon. “We’re just heating them up.”
Shannon helped the kids serve themselves hotdogs. It was a messy and cheerful process, punctuated by yips and barks from Hannie and corresponding giggles from Sari.
“Shannon,” said Hannie thoughtfully, pushing her ears off her face. “When is Astrid having her puppies?”
“In a couple of weeks.” Shannon reached for more cheese. “She’s resting a lot now.”
“Maria said Astrid is going to have her puppies in a box in the laundry!” Hannie looked enthralled at the idea. “Is that true?”
Shannon nodded. “Mom has everything all set up and ready. She’s spending lots of time with Astrid to make sure she’s healthy.” Mrs. Kilbourne had even taken to sleeping on a camp bed in the living room to be close to Astrid, ‘just in case’. Shannon wasn’t an expert on dogs’ pregnancies, but she had an inkling that this wasn’t entirely necessary.
“Can we watch the puppies being born?” Linny asked eagerly.
Shannon smiled. “I doubt it. It’ll probably happen while you’re asleep. My Grandpa was a dog breeder, and Mom said their puppies were usually born overnight.”
“Will you be allowed to wake up and watch?”
“Maybe.”
“Boy,” said Linny enviously. “I wish I lived at your house.”
Shannon shot a fleeting look out the kitchen window. Her house stood perfectly still and perfectly silent. It appeared almost empty, despite the lights on in the dining room window.
“Linny!” wailed Hannie. He had accidently squirted a stream of mustard over the table, splattering across his sister’s half finished hot dog.
“Sorry,” said a bewildered Linny. “I didn’t mean to.”
Shannon couldn’t help but grin. She loved hot dogs.

  

 

Shannon, Lindsey, Meg and Polly were sprawled on the grass at SDS. The school grounds were beautiful that day – a lovely combination of bright sunshine and dappled shade. Much of the student body had chosen to eat their lunch outside, making the most of the sun.
“I can’t believe you’re studying now, Shann,” observed Meg. “I wish your dedication was contagious.”
“I don’t know,” grinned Polly. “I’m cool with thinking of studying as a disease. Someone get her an antidote, stat!”
Shannon laughed as Lindsey threw a bag of M&Ms at her.
“You’re right,” she said, closing the astronomy book. “I’ll study after school. It’s just that I can’t believe it’s already Friday. The astronomy club test is on Monday, and I don’t feel at all ready for it.”
“I’ll go to the library with you after school today,” offered Meg. “I have a whole lot of French to do.”
“Deal.” Shannon grabbed a handful of M&Ms and passed the bag to Polly. She grinned, feeling warmed by Meg’s offer. She liked that her friends understood how important this was to her. If she passed this test, she’d be the only middle-school member of the astronomy club. She’d be in the same club as twelfth graders. Maybe, if she got in, she could even convince her parents to buy a telescope. Like at Sally’s house.
Shannon’s eyes combed the grounds, but she couldn’t see Sally or Greer amongst the groups of students lounging in the sun.
“So…” she began cautiously. “Does anyone know where are Sally and Greer are?”
Lindsey shrugged. “I saw them at the lockers. I think they stayed inside to eat.”
There was a pause.
“I haven’t seen Greer for a whole week,” murmured Polly.
“Me neither,” agreed Meg.
Lindsey remained silent, her eyes on her shoes. Shannon was also silent, but her eyes strayed towards the school building.

  

 

Shannon woke early on Saturday morning. The astronomy books Mr. Katz had lent her were sitting in a neat pile on her desk, strips of notebook paper poking out to mark important pages. She hadn’t done nearly enough studying to feel ready for the test, and she felt relieved to have a whole day of studying ahead of her.

Her head was in the clouds – more specifically, in the crab nebula – when the phone rang. She jumped violently when Tiffany banged on her bedroom door.
“Shannon! It’s for you!”
It took Shannon a second to regain her composure.
“Okay!” she replied, leaving the book open on her desk. She moved to the hallway extension, her head still buzzing with supernovae and black holes.
“Hello, Shannon? This is Sally. Sally White.”
Sally White? Really? Shannon’s heart began to pound.
“Sally? Hi.”
“Hi. What are you doing?”
“Studying. What are –”
“Why are you studying on a Saturday morning?” Sally interrupted. “You don’t have to study all weekend, do you? Can you come over today?”
A smile played at the corner of Shannon’s mouth.
“Sure! Sure I can!” she responded eagerly.
“Great, come over at midday. Don’t have lunch before you come.”
“Okay, see you then! Bye Sally!”
Shannon hung up the phone, a broad grin across her face.

  

 

A light breeze was blowing. Shadow and sunlight danced across the Whites’ sunporch, creating an almost kaleidoscopic pattern. Shannon and Sally were seated on elegantly designed deck chairs, eating toasted sandwiches and sipping iced tea. Shannon’s eyes drank in the scene, lingering on the unusual touches of bright colour that decorated the porch.
“Let’s go swimming.”
Shannon waited a moment, having just barely swallowed her last mouthful of lunch. “Right now? We’ll get cramps.”
Sally rolled her eyes. “That’s an old wives’ tale.”
They sat in silence for a moment. Shannon put down her iced tea, deciding against slurping the last drops.
“Want to see the rest of the house?” asked Sally.
“Sure!” replied Shannon eagerly. “Where’s the hairless cat?”
Sally blinked. “Tallahassee? I don’t know.” Sally left the table and moved towards the door, Shannon following close behind.
 “Your cat’s name is Tallahassee?”
Sally rolled her eyes a second time. “Mom named her. She gets to name everything.”
Shannon trailed behind Sally through a corridor lined with tribal masks. The masks were earthy colours – browns and reds that jumped out against the dead white of the walls. Shannon wanted to stop for a closer look and perhaps ask some questions about where the masks had come from, but Sally was walking too quickly. Shannon jogged a few steps, conscious that she was falling behind.

Sally led her into an enormous room, the walls lined with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves. Shannon audibly gasped when she entered – the sheer size and scale of the room was breathtaking. Shelf after shelf of books and vinyl records with gaps left for small and intricate pieces of sculpture. A polished grand piano sat on a raised platform in the centre of the room.
“Look at all this cool stuff ,” she murmured. She turned to Sally, who was gazing out a window with a bored expression. “Hey, where’s the telescope? Meg said you have one.”
Sally wrinkled her nose. “In the attic. But telescopes are boring.”
“Not to me. Please can we see it?”
Sally sighed. But she took Shannon to the attic, leading the way up a spiral staircase.
“There it is.” The Whites’ attic was large and airy. The ceiling was dotted with skylights, flooding the room with bright natural light. The telescope was set up by the far wall, looking out a large casement window.
“Cool!” Shannon eagerly crossed the room for a closer look. “Mr. Katz – one of the science teachers, I don’t know if you know him – he invited me to join the astronomy club.”
“Yeah?” Sally leaned against the wall. She was still standing by the top of the stairs, as though keen to leave the attic.
“Yeah. I have to take a test to join. If I pass, I’ll be the only member of the club still in middle school. The test is on Monday.” She checked her watch. “In fact, I’m going to have to leave soon. I have to keep studying.
Sally’s head snapped up. “No! You can’t. We haven’t gone swimming yet.”
Shannon frowned. “But I didn’t even bring my suit.”
“You can borrow one of mine.” Without waiting for an answer, Sally turned and flounced down the stairs. After a fleeting pause, Shannon followed.

  

 

“Bye Shannon!”
Shannon waved, flicking her still-damp hair out of her eyes. She quickly hopped on her bike, aware that the daylight was rapidly fading. She had a good ten minute bike ride ahead of her, and she needed to be home by dark.

Her body was completely drained of energy. She and Sally had swum for hours, and then they had traipsed around the Whites’ large property to see all their horses. Sally’s horse was called Sure Thing, and he was beautiful. But now she was running late. She rhythmically pumped the pedals, desperately hoping that she would be able to squeeze in some study before she collapsed into bed.

  

 

Shannon sat at her desk on Sunday morning, a look of grim determination across her face. The test was only twenty-nine hours away, and for fourteen of those hours she would be sleeping or in class. And she couldn’t even begin studying for it until she’d tackled her Philosophy and English homework, both of which were due tomorrow morning. She leaned slightly forward in her chair, one hand flying across her notebook while the other flicked through The Westing Game.

A bold knock sounded at the door. She glanced up.
“Phone for you!” announced Maria, flinging the door open.
Shannon let out a sigh. She hadn’t even heard it ring.
“Thanks,” she said, heading for the extension.
“Hello?”
“Hi Shannon, it’s Sally. Want to come over? You can ride Sure Thing.”
“Sally, I told you, the astronomy test is tomorrow.” Shannon bit her lip, anxious to return to her room. “Can’t I come over sometime next week? After the test? The club is really important to me.”
“How important?”
Shannon blinked. How important? What was she supposed to say to that?
“I – I don’t know. Just… really important.”
“So important that you’re going to study all day?”
“I –”
“Think it over and call me back.”
Shannon said goodbye and hung up, nervously tugging at a loose curl. What on earth had just happened?

  

 

Shannon shot a glance at the hallway clock, inwardly cursing herself as she dialed. She had wasted far too much time that morning trying to figure out Sally White. The test was tomorrow, and the hours were slipping away from her.
“Hello, Sally? It’s Shannon.”
“Shannon! So, are you coming over?”
“I’m sorry Sally, but I can’t. I have to study.” She paused, waiting for a reply. None came.
“I’ll see you tomorrow.” She hesitated again, expecting Sally to say something. “Bye.”
CLUNK.
Shannon’s jaw dropped slightly. She stood, bewildered, listening to the dial tone hum in her ear.
Did Sally really just hang up on me? 

 

 

On Monday morning, all three Kilbourne girls made it to the bus stop early. Shannon clutched an astronomy textbook to her chest, eyes glazed over, running through various facts in her head. Tiffany was scuffing her feet, muttering something about her gym teacher, while Maria swung her bookbag in a wide circle.
“Maria, stop!” snapped Tiffany, as the backpack came perilously close to her shoulder. “You’re going to hit me with that!”
“I’m being careful!” protested Maria. She kept swinging, and Tiffany had to jump back to avoid being whacked in the head.
“Maria!”
“Hey, guys!”
Tiffany and Maria paused, and Shannon came back to earth with a jolt. Two girls in SDS uniforms were sauntering towards them, both with hair falling in clean, sleek lines to their shoulders. While one was blonde and the other’s hair was a dark reddish colour, they were clearly sisters.
“Hi Kimberly. Hi Nicole.” Shannon tilted her head. “I thought you guys lived on Edgerstoune Drive.”
“Yeah, we do,” answered Nicole, tossing her dark hair over her shoulder. “But our house is being renovated, so we’re living with our Aunt and Uncle for two weeks.”
“They live a few houses down that way,” added Kimberly, pointing over her shoulder.
Shannon nodded politely. Kimberly and Nicole Munson weren’t her favourite people in the world. They both had a distinct obnoxious streak.
Almost like an older Amanda Delaney, thought Shannon, eyeing the vague sneer across Kimberly’s face. But their appearance had stopped Maria from killing them all with her bookbag, so that was something.
The bus rumbled around the corner.
“Bus is here!” announced Maria. Tiffany rolled her eyes.
“Thanks, Sherlock.”
Maria glared at her sister and opened her mouth for a retort.
“Guys, come on,” said Shannon wearily. Maria remained silent, contenting herself with a second withering glare in Tiffany’s direction. As soon as the bus doors opened she leapt quickly up the stairs. Tiffany let Kimberly and Nicole go before her, happy for some distance between her and Maria. Shannon, feeling apprehensive, climbed up last.
Lindsey, Meg and Greer were sitting in the middle of the bus, a seat saved next to Greer. At the very back, whispering and laughing with Sally, sat Polly.
Shannon slid into the seat next to Greer. The three friends were sitting in silence, gazing out the window, hurt looks across all their faces. Shannon, eyes downcast, opened the astronomy book and lost herself inside it.

  

 

“Are you kidding?” said Greer incredulously. “She hung up on you?”
“Shhh,” warned Shannon. She could see Sally and Polly over Greer’s shoulder, sitting on a nearby bench. Polly was listening to Sally with rapt attention, but the two girls were definitely close enough to hear Greer’s outburst.
Greer took Shannon by the elbow and steered her away from the bench.
“That’s insane. Something is wrong with that girl.”
Shannon looked up, surprised at the vitriol in Greer’s voice.
“Well?” said Greer, reacting to the look on Shannon’s face. “She hung up on you, rejected you as a friend, and is now completely ignoring you all because you wouldn’t drop everything you were doing to go hang out with her.” Greek shook her head. “That’s messed up.”
Something stirred in Shannon’s stomach. Greer was right. How had she not realised this already?
She looked back over her shoulder at Polly, whose face was lit up with an excited grin. Shannon and Greer watched on, worry etched on their faces.

  

 

Shannon sat in Mr. Katz’s classroom, her hand flying across the paper. She had finished the paper, but she was going back through and adding detail to some of her shorter answers.
“Time’s up.”
Shannon dropped her pen. She picked up her competed test, feeling light. It hadn’t been an easy test and she’d had to think hard about some of the questions, but she felt great about how she’d done. Mr. Katz collected her paper with a smile.
“Thanks Shannon,” he said. “Come and see me on Wednesday morning, I’ll have it graded by then.”
Shannon said goodbye, grabbing her backpack. She was almost skipping down the stairs as she headed for the late bus. She didn’t dare feel too certain but she couldn’t quite help it.
I’m in, she thought gleefully.

 

 

On Wednesday morning, Shannon nervously knocked on Mr. Katz’s door. Her excitement had waned on Monday night, and she spent Tuesday second-guessing all the answers she had hesitated over. The books had been returned to Mr. Katz right before the test, so she couldn’t even spend the day neurotically checking every detail. Mr. Katz opened the door.
“Ah, Ms. Kilbourne.”
Shannon followed him to his desk where he rifled through a pile of papers. He flicked her test out and handed it over, a pleased look across his features.
“Excellent work,” he said, nodding at the red 97 emblazoned across the top. “You’ll be an asset to the astronomy club. We meet in room 72, over in the high school wing, on Monday afternoons. I take I’ll be seeing you there?”
Shannon beamed at him. “Of course!”
She floated out of the room, barely noticing the noise in the hallway as she went to her locker. She had done it.
She looked around the lockers for her friends, and her smile faded as she caught sight of Sally, showing Polly something she’d hidden away in her locker. Polly was gawking appreciatively, while Sally wore a self-satisfied smile.
Shannon turned away, her elation replaced with a hollow anger.

 

 

Shannon trailed behind Tiffany and Maria as they walked through the door that afternoon. She felt drained. She wandered into the living room, deciding to pay a visit to Astrid.
Astrid wasn’t usually allowed in the living room, but she was quite heavily pregnant now. The Kilbournes had taken to treating her like a Queen, and she was loving every second of it. She was resting at Mrs. Kilbourne’s feet, but lifted her head when she saw Shannon coming.
“Hey, girl.” Shannon scratched behind Astrid’s ears. Astrid gazed loyally into Shannon’s eyes, and Shannon buried her face in Astrid’s soft fur.
“Careful,” said Mrs. Kilbourne, raising her eyes from her Good Housekeeping magazine.
“I know,” replied Shannon, sitting back up. She affectionately smoothed the top of Astrid’s head. “How’s she doing?”
“She’s doing great. I’d like her to have another check-up soon, though. Dr. Smith said that she’d make a house call this time. It’s better to keep Astrid away from the vet’s waiting room right now, so many sick animals pass through there.” She glanced up at the clock. “Actually, now’s a great time to call. Can you get the phone number for me? It’s in that pile of paper next to the fridge. Somewhere near the top.”
Shannon stood up, heading for the kitchen. She sifted through the pile of paper, easily finding the right one. As she picked it up, an alphabet-block pattern on the sheet below caught her eye. She frowned, her eyes skimming over the flier.

Need a Baby-sitter?

Save time! Call:

THE BABY-SITTERS CLUB

KL5-3231

Monday, Wednesday, Friday 5:30-6:00

and reach five experienced baby-sitters.

 
She snatched it up and took it with her to the living room, where her mom was waiting by the phone.
“Thanks, Shanny.”
Ignoring this use of her baby name, Shannon held up the baby-sitting flier.
“What’s this?” she demanded.
Her mom glanced up. “Oh, that. It was in our mailbox about a week ago. You know Mr. Brewer’s new wife? One of her children handed them out. Her name’s Kristy, and I think she’s about your age. You should go and say hello to her. She’s new in the neighbourhood, and you’ve got at least one thing in common.” Mrs. Kilbourne nodded towards the baby-sitting flier. “Can you read out Dr. Smith’s number for me?”
Shannon recited the number before making her escape. She darted up the stairs, flyer in hand. She barged into Tiffany’s room without bothering to knock.
“Hey!” protested Tiffany. She jumped back from the mirror, an uncapped tube of lipstick in her hand.
Shannon brandished the flier in front of her sister’s face.
“Have you seen this?”
Tiffany stared at it. She turned back to Shannon, an infuriatingly blank look on her face.
“What about it?”
“What about it?” repeated Shannon incredulously. “That new girl in Mr. Brewer’s house has been handing them out. Kristina, or whatever her name is. She’s after your baby-sitting jobs! Our baby-sitting jobs!”
Tiffany shrugged. “She’s welcome to mine. I don’t really like baby-sitting that much.”
Shannon just stood there, speechless.
“What?” said Tiffany, confused. “What’s the big deal?”
“The big deal is that some new girl is coming and horning in on our baby-sitting territory,” snapped Shannon.
Tiffany stared. Her failure to catch on made Shannon even more furious.
“She can’t do this! She’s new! She can’t just waltz into our lives and take things away from us!” She crumpled the flier in her hand as she stormed out of Tiffany’s room.
“Shannon, it’s just baby-sitting!” Tiffany shouted over the echoing slam of the door.

  

 

Shannon sat flopped into a seat in the cafeteria. She couldn’t remember the last time she’d felt this grumpy. She missed Polly. Her friends were still hurting after Sally had treated them so badly. And she couldn’t shake the feeling that she was about to hit a baby-sitting lull. She thought wistfully of dinner at the Papadakis house.

“Hey guys,” said a quiet voice.
The four girls looked up. Polly was standing at the table, looking glum. “Can I join you?”
They around shuffled to make room. Polly slid into a seat, pulling a sandwich out of her backpack.
Greer held out a bag of cherries.
“What happened?” she asked quietly.
Polly shrugged, accepting two cherries. Shannon, Lindsey, Meg and Greer silently searched the cafeteria, hunting for Sally. They spotted her by the back windows, sitting at an empty table with Frannie Davenport.
Lindsey gasped. “What about me?” she wailed. “She never chose me. She chose everyone else in our group, but not me. And now she’s chosen a sixth-grader. What’s wrong with me?”
Shannon felt awful for Lindsey. But she couldn’t help feeling like Lindsey was the lucky one. Her eyes burned whenever she looked in Sally’s direction. Beside her, she could feel Greer’s doing the same.

 

 

Shannon spent the weekend on the phone. Out of everyone, Polly and Lindsey were the most upset about Sally. Half her time on the phone had been spent consoling them, while the other half was spent talking to Meg and Greer, trying to figure out a way to cheer them up.

 By Monday morning, Shannon’s mind was still tangled around Sally White. She snatched up her backpack, ready to leave, when Maria came meandering into the kitchen. She was still in her pyjamas.
“Maria!” scolded Mrs. Kilbourne. “Get a move on!”
Shannon had no inclination to wait for her sisters. She left the house, closed the door behind her and walked down the driveway.
An unfamiliar girl was standing opposite, at the end of Mr. Brewer’s driveway. Her long hair was brown, and pulled into a haphazard ponytail. Her faded jeans had a hole at the knee, and she was wearing a grey sweater. Shannon vaguely remembered seeing her around before. She couldn’t quite place where, but she knew who this was. This was Mr. Brewer’s new stepdaughter. Shannon and the girl eyed each other, but remained silent.
Nicole and Kimberly joined Shannon, looking curiously over the road.
“Who’s that?” whispered Nicole.
Shannon heard her front door slam, and they were quickly joined by Tiffany.
“New girl,” muttered Shannon. “Her mom married the guy who lives in that house over the road.”
“Ohhh, is that her,” said Tiffany, looking fascinated. She turned to Nicole. “She’s been handing out baby-sitting fliers. We got one in our mailbox.”
Nicole smirked. “No way, that’s her? We got one of those at our place. Need a baby-sitter? Save time!” she mimicked.  
“I think she could do with a new pair of jeans,” giggled Kimberly.
Nicole snorted. “And a hairbrush.”
Shannon snickered, and Tiffany looked at her in surprise.
The girl was carefully examining the cover of her notebook, avoiding eye contact with the knot of girls in front of the Kilbourne’s house.
Kimberly elbowed Nicole in the ribs. “Dare you to talk to her,” she giggled.
“No way!” said Nicole, her eyes bright. “You do it!”
Shannon rolled her eyes and took a step forward.
“You’re Mr. Brewer’s new kid, aren’t you?” she called.
The girl looked up, her face wary. “I’m one of them.”
“Are you the one who’s been sending fliers around? For some baby-sitting club?”
The girl frowned. “Yeah,” she answered.
“What does your little club do?” mocked Kimberly.
“What do you think?” she snapped, clearly irked by Kimberly’s tone. “We baby-sit.”
“How cute,” said Shannon, sending Kimberly and Nicole into a fit of giggles.
Nicole put her hands on her hips, a sneer on her face that matched her sister’s.
“Nice outfit,” She mocked.
The girl’s cheeks went slightly pink, but she immediately retaliated.
“Your outfits are nice too,” she retorted, matching Nicole’s aggressive stance. “You look like clones. Snob clones.”
The girl’s bus pulled in, and she was momentarily hidden from view. When she appeared at the window, she flung it open and shouted, “Goodbye, snobs!”
“Bye, Jerk-face!” yelled Shannon.
The girl stuck out her tongue. Shannon seethed, watching the bus disappear around the corner. How dare that girl call her a snob?

 

 
 
 
LuxKen27: BSC - Stacey smileluxken27 on February 19th, 2011 08:19 pm (UTC)
This is amazing!! First of all, I just love the way you've knitted the two pieces of canon together ~ it feels like a free-flowing story, instead of two books written nearly a decade apart. Nice job!

I love the depth you've given Shannon's character here, and I love the way you did it, with little hints and peeks and insights into everyone's behavior. I've never really thought about Shannon's home life being stressful (I guess it shows how long its been since I read Shannon's Story :P, but the way you contrasted her family dinner with her baby-sitting job was fabulous, and does more for that particular facet of the story than saying outright "Shannon has a bad home life" ever could.

Shannon's friendships with her SDS friends felt very natural as well, even as, one after the other, they were all selected to be Sally's "special" friend. The resilience of their bond is shown in the way they can each come back to the group after her rejection and be supported. I'm curious to see more of her friendship with Greer, in fact - whether you have more up your sleeve or if I need to walk down that route myself to find out :)

And, lastly, I loved the progression from Shannon's frustration with Sally and how it was turned into outrage over Kristy horning in on the baby-sitting business. Shannon's explosion to Tiffany was really intense and telling, and a wonderful bit of psychology :) Nice job!

I like the ending - this fic feels coherent and whole, and like a missing piece slipped between two ends of canon. Considering how big of a bitch Shannon was to Kristy in Kristy and the Snobs, its nice to know there was something else at play, besides snobbery.

Excellent work!! Thanks so much for sharing it with us! =)
-: Baby-Sitters Club - Slytherin (violence)isabelquinn on February 20th, 2011 04:32 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you!! ♥

I don't know if we see that much of Shannon's tough home life in canon. It comes up enough that we know it's there, but we don't see it too much. Like, in the Sally White chapters of SS11 she says that her home life isn't great, not that many people know about it, and that she was particularly looking forward to school starting that year because tension was running really high in her house at that time. So it made sense to include it. I'm so glad that it came across so well for you! :D

I don't have any specifc plans for exploring the Shannon/Greer friendship, but you never know ;) you're welcome to explore it if you like :D

I like the ending - this fic feels coherent and whole, and like a missing piece slipped between two ends of canon.
Oh, I'm so glad you think so :D That was sort of the aim, Shannon pretty much states (in SS11) that this experience is why she was such a jerk to Kristy. But it's just baldly stated, and it doesn't really make as much sense to the reader as it could.


I'm so glad you liked it :D Thanks for commenting!!
LuxKen27: BSC - Stacey smileluxken27 on February 20th, 2011 05:36 am (UTC)
It comes up enough that we know it's there, but we don't see it too much. Like, in the Sally White chapters of SS11 she says that her home life isn't great, not that many people know about it

*nods* It's one thing to say her home life wasn't that great, and it's quite another to show it. Showing is definitely more powerful than telling, as you have demonstrated with this story, LOL!

I don't have any specifc plans for exploring the Shannon/Greer friendship, but you never know ;) you're welcome to explore it if you like :D

Who knows? It's certainly ripe for the picking :) Your story has definitely made me more intrigued about Shannon and how much we don't know about her personal life. I'd love to see more with her, even if I have to write it myself :)
Lisa: Music: Feist Danceozqueen on February 20th, 2011 03:50 am (UTC)
I love this! You worked so hard on it and researched it so much, and you managed to make it all flow perfectly and clearly and effortlessly. &hearts

I love the tense scene of the Kilbournes having dinner. I love the bond between Shannon and her friends. I love how important school is to Shannon. I love the scene with the Papadakis kids, and I love how Shannon's feelings of confusion and hurt are transferred into something else towards Kristy.

This all fits so easily into canon it's going to be one of those stories I actually confuse with the books.

Again, great job! I love it. :D &hearts
-: Baby-Sitters Club - Sea Cityisabelquinn on February 20th, 2011 05:10 am (UTC)
Thank you :D and thanks for your beta!skillz, you were superhelpful ♥

This all fits so easily into canon it's going to be one of those stories I actually confuse with the books.

If it makes you feel better, Shannon transfering her Sally White Rage onto Kristy actually is canon :D Though maybe the implication in the books is more "I decided I no longer trusted new girls" rather than transferred rage. I don't even know anymore, tbh ;)
Roonil Wazlib: COOKIE!baseballchica03 on February 20th, 2011 05:45 pm (UTC)
I love this! We definitely don't get to see enough of Shannon or her home life in canon, and I think this fills it in so nicely.

My favorite part is when Shannon takes out her frustration with everything on Kristy's flier. It's not "just baby-sitting" like it is to Tiffany; it's the culmination of so much more.

Great job!
-: Sweet Valley Twins - Jessicaisabelquinn on February 22nd, 2011 01:49 am (UTC)
Thank you!! :D I'm glad you like that scene! It could so easily have fallen flat, and it's nice to know that people think it worked :)

Over the years I've noticed that's a common opinion in the fandom. People like Shannon! It's a shame we didn't get more of her in canon.
gloriafan on August 17th, 2011 01:13 am (UTC)
I can just never get enough Shannon. Awesome work!
Mistraliwith_rainfall on January 20th, 2014 04:11 am (UTC)
I haven't read Shannon's Story yet, but this is such a good look into a character we hardly get anything else about. I like Shannon in fic, but I tend to forget about her in canon.