Maiela sat at the head of the table and put all of her papers in a neat pile and all of her pencils in the pencil cup. She looked at the empty seats and felt a sense of loneliness. She knew that everyone would come, but she also knew that they would talk about the community and then they would leave. No chit-chat like normal citizens.
She watched as the door opened and the other eleven members walked in. They took their respected seats and looked expectantly at Maiela.
"Hello and good evening. I have called this meeting to talk about the recent crimes in the mortal world. We must do something about that. Last Friday, I asked all of you to create an idea for how to stop these crimes. Sheaira?"Maiela prompted. Sheaira stood up and took a deep breath.
"Good evening, fellow board members! I have worked all weekend on my idea. Here it goes! We would have three phases. The first one is going underground and slowly taking-not killing-the criminals. If the crime does not go down, we will start to not only take the criminals, but lock them up. Again, if the crime rate does not go down, we would have no choice but to sadly kill,"Sheaira explained. Everyone gave her light applause and she smiled, then sat back down.
"Thank you, Sheaira, for that wonderful idea. We will definitely put it into consideration. Now, Iriel. What is your idea?"Maiela asked. The rest of the meeting went by in a blur to Maiela; most of the ideas were the same as Sheaiara's. The only one that was different was Syrune's. He wanted to execute the criminals right away; which Maiela would never agree to.
When the meeting was finally over, Maiela dismissed everyone except herself. She stayed at the head of the table and just sat. The mortal world was in a war with a virus; COVID-19. And all of the elves were hard at work everywhere. Especially where she was, because the coronavirus cases were still getting higher, and now there were protests. And with both of these things came death.
After getting lost in her thoughts for a bit, she picked up her papers and left the room. Maiela walked through the endless hallways until she got to the lobby. Only the janitor was still there, so she bid him a good night and then left. She walked into the parking lot and got to her car. She unlocked it and then got in. She straightened her light pink dress and then drove away.
Driving home, she had all of her windows rolled all the way down and her favorite mortal singer, Alec Benjamin, blasting from the radio. People on the streets glared at her, but she ignored them and sang at the top of her lungs.
"You won't find him down on Sunset, or at a party in the hills! At the bottom of the bottle, or when you're tripping on some pills!"Maiela sang. It was her favorite song by Alec Benjamin; Jesus in L.A.. It was one that she could rock out to, and on days like this she needed a song to pick her up.
When she got home, she was greeted by her eleven-year-old daughter, Sasha. Sasha ran to Maiela and hugged her. She looked up at her mother and smiled.
"Mother! You said that you would already be home when I got home from school,"Sasha groaned. Maiela gave her daughter a tight squeeze and then let go.
"I know, I know. I'm sorry, honey. But I have tomorrow off. By the way, your father has to go into work early tomorrow, so I'm going to take you to school before I go into work,"Maiela said. Sasha nodded and helped her mother put down her purse and straighten her dress again.
"This is my favorite dress of yours. The light pink color is really pretty. I can't wait until I'm a couple inches taller and I can wear it,"Sasha grinned. Maiela smiled back and then walked with Sasha into the living room. Akkar, Maiela's husband, was sitting on the couch and reading one of his favorite books, Dragons and Dakath. It was a book about a man around his age learning about dragons and then finding one himself and getting into fights with that dragon and his "friends".
"Reading that book again, Akkar?"Maiela teased. Akkar shook his head, but didn't look up. Maiela gave Sasha a lights hove towards the kitchen.
"What do you want for a side for the steaks your father is grilling?"Maiela asked. Sasha shrugged and opened the fridge. She scanned the shelves up and down, up and down.
“I’m going to make some fried vegetables. Like your zucchini, but more than just that. Want to help?”Sasha replied. She pulled out the tray of vegetables Maiela had chopped up the day before. Sasha set the tray down on the counter and then opened the cupboard beneath it. She pulled out a frying pan and sat it on the stove. Turning the heat on, she moved around the kitchen grabbing olive oil, lemon, red pepper flakes, and salt.
“Are you going to help, Mother?”Sasha asked. Maiela nodded and grabbed the olive oil.
“Here, put this in the pan,”Maiela ordered. Sasha gave her mother a look of annoyance.
“Mother, I’ve done this a thousand times. You can help, but you don’t need to tell me exactly what to do now,”Sasha declared. Maiela was about to yell at her daughter for talking back, but decided against it. Maiela knew that Sasha was growing up and didn’t absolutely always need her help anymore.
“Okay, okay. Here you go.” Maiela held out the olive oil container and Sasha grabbed it from her. She poured some in the pan and then handed it back to Maiela. Maiela put it back in its rightful place in the cupboard and then watched as her daughter started putting all of the ingredients in the pan.
“Half of a lemon. No more, no less.” “Just a pinch of the pepper flakes!” were some of Maiela’s comments as Sasha cooked the vegetables. When Sasha was done, she carefully transferred the dish from the pan to a big bowl.
“Akkar! The vegetables are done, they just have to cool off! Can you make the steaks now?”Maiela called. She and Sasha heard Akkar get up from his position on the couch and start walking towards the kitchen door.
“Yeah, of course. Anything for my little girl,”Akkar said as he tickled Sasha. She laughed and then punched him in the arm. Akkar pretended he was badly injured and then went to the backyard, putting the steaks on the grill.
“Sasha. Sweetheart. Time for school,”Maiela whispered. She sat at the edge of Sasha’ bed and shook her slightly. Sasha opened her eyes slowly and then groggily sat up.
“Good morning, Mother. I’m up; I’ll be ready in a little bit,”Sasha stated. She rubbed her eyes then let her hands drop to her sides. Maiela nodded and walked out of Sasha’s room.
Maiela walked through the hallway and into the kitchen. She picked up a spatula and put the pancake that was cooking on the pan on a plate. She grabbed the butter dish and put a square of the butter onto the pancake. Maiela walked over to the fridge and got the syrup. She drizzled it all over the pancake, setting it down on the table along with a glass of orange juice, a fork, and a napkin.
“Breakfast is ready when you are!” Maiela stuck her head into the hallway. Sasha was brushing her hair and nodded. Maiela pulled her head back into the kitchen and then put the pan and spatula in the dishwasher.
Minutes later, Sasha walked into the kitchen in her school uniform. With her own little tweaks to it, of course, including a black headband, a black choker, and knee-high socks.
“Like what I did with the uniform today?”Sasha questioned. Maiela gave her daughter a smile and a nod while geseturing to the table. Sasha sat down and took a sip of her orange juice and looked expectantly at her mother. Maiela was immediately reminded of the meeting from the night before.
“It’s amazing, honey. I like the socks. It makes the outfit look even more uniform like, but in a cute way. And that choker and headband are super cute, too,”Maiela stated. She leaned up against the counter and picked up her coffee, taking a drink. Sasha wolfed down her breakfast and then got up and put her plate and glass in the sink.
“Thanks, Mother. I wish Father made me breakfast like that,”Sasha sighed. Akkar and Sasha always had to leave early because Akkar worked at the local high school and had to be there by seven o’clock in the morning every day.
“I know, but once summer comes you and him will be off of school and you guys can have a late breakfast together all the time,”Maiela said. She stroked her daughter’s hair and smiled. Sasha gaver Maiela a smile back and then grabbed her black and leather “school” bag. The real bag that you were supposed to take to her school was a simple gray backpack with just the school emblem on it. After the first few months of school, the faculty finally realized that Sasha would never completely follow the school’s dress codes.
“Well, we don’t want to be late. Let’s go, let’s go, let’s go,”Sasha urged. Maiela sighed as she grabbed her bag and her coffee and followed her daughter out the door.
After dropping Sasha off at school, Maiela drove to the office the same as she had the night before; windows down and Alec Benjamin blasting. Unlike the night before, there weren’t many people on the streets that early in the morning, so she didn’t get any glares from passersby.
Getting to the office was the same as always, she was the first one there. Maiela got her key out of her purse and unlocked the doors. She walked in and went straight to her personal office. There were two stacks of paper sitting on her desk that her co-workers must’ve dropped off the night before. She sighed an exasperated sigh and sat her things down and got to work.
Most of the papers were about the crimes and protests, but some of them were about how to stop the cases of the mortal COVID-19 to stop growing higher and higher. Maiela had to write We’ll take your idea into consideration and I’m sorry, we cannot accept your idea over fifty times, back and forth, for each paper. Most of the ideas were the latter.
After about a half hour of reading over the ideas and then writing something on them, she heard the doors swing open and the bell ding.
“Maiela? Maiela! I need you! Saginaw, above us! They need us! NOW!” Maiela ran to her office door and opened it. She continued to hear someone calling her name. She ran to the lobby and Sheaira was standing there.
“Oh, my God! We need you! There’s a protest going on in Saginaw right this minute. The protesters are setting fire to buildings. They’re destroying our city. People, including the police force and the protesters, have guns. They’re shooting. We need you!”Sheaira cried.
To be continued...