The Visit

by Vanshika Chauhaun

The Visit, Chapter One

“Great! Let’s get started. So, where is everyone from?”

“I’m from Ireland!” said Margot.

“India,” replied Nadia.

“Kendra and I are both from here, actually!” laughed Chloe.

“I’m from Norway,” smiled Halley.

“And lastly, I’m from Alabama,” said Anne. Jenna quickly brought out her question sheets.

“Wow! ‘So nice to meet you all!” smiled Jenna as she started with her questions. “What’s the thing you love most about home?”

“The food!” said Chloe, Nadia and Halley at once. Everyone laughed at their unplanned synchronized answer.

“I love my fried chicken!” Anne replied, laughing. “It’s a great part about being from the south!”

“Funny enough, I actually enjoy the rain here but not the bears!” Chloe said as everyone laughed.

One week earlier…

Jenna slammed her laptop shut, frustrated for the 12th time that Thursday. She quickly paced around her bedroom forcing herself to brainstorm ideas on how the story she was writing would continue. After walking so much that the soles of her feet were paining as if she had just run a marathon, Jenna dejectedly fell on her mattress, blowing away the hair that had fallen onto her face. She lay on her bed for a half an hour before reluctantly picking up the silver phone next to her bed and dialing in a number. After a few rings the person on the other side picked up and immediately started talking,

“Jenna! Honey, how are you? You haven’t called in days and we were all so worried here!” said the lady.

“I’m fine, Katherine. How are you?” Jenna replied, forcing herself to act nice.

“Well, all is great here in Issaquah! Why did you call?” Katherine asked almost sounding too nice.

“I hate to be asking this but a couple of weeks ago when we were talking on the phone, you were praising the place you live in and talking about all the diversity, culture and friendliness-”

“Yes, yes! Issaquah Highlands is a wonderful place with such nice people!” interrupted Katherine. Jenna forced a smile onto her face, calming herself with the reminder of her overall goal and how getting mad at her older sister Katherine for interrupting her, would not help her achieve it.

“Well, I’m writing a new book and I’ve really been having some writers block for the past couple of days. I need to go to a quiet, nice place with lots of inspiration, unlike the busy streets of LA. And from what you were saying about Issaquah, it seems like a perfect place. So what I was wondering is if could come visit you just for a couple of days to finish my book? I don’t mean to impose on you, this is really my last choice but, I have nothing else that’s working for me!” Jenna said very quickly, almost in one whole breath.

“Jenna, this is great news! Please don’t feel you’re imposing on me. You’re welcome anytime,” warmly replied Katherine, smiling from ear to ear on the other side of the phone.

“Thank you, Katherine! I’ll start packing right away, there’s no time to waste!” said Jenna as she switched off the phone, feeling hopeful.

Jenna pulled in to her sister’s driveway on a warm day in mid-August. She stopped her car and gazed out the window at the beautiful houses that neighbored Katherine’s home. She took deep breaths, reminding herself why she was here and how the past was in the past and she had to move on. When Katherine and Jenna were both younger, Katherine was always the better sister. She had better grades, a better social life and a better relationship to her parents. While their parents would never admit, they all favored Katherine. Jenna was the quiet girl that always stayed in her bedroom writing stories of places that she wished she could be in. As Jenna and Katherine both grew older, Katherine grew to be more successful but Jenna has learned to get over the resentment that she had had for her sister and instead focus on following her dreams. Even though they had solved their problems years ago, Jenna still couldn’t help the negative thoughts that popped into her head as she stood in her sister’s neighborhood. Eventually, Jenna took a big breath, climbed out of her car and grabbed her bags.

She was immediately bombarded with hugs from her sister and her seven-year-old niece, Alicia. Katherine and Jenna caught up with each other over some tea and talked about Jenna’s book for some time before Alicia pulled Jenna outside to play catch with her friends.

As Alicia played with her friends, Jenna started talking to another woman who was there to watch her kids play. They introduced themselves; the woman’s name being Victoria. When Victoria asked Jenna if she was new to Issaquah, Jenna told Victoria about her writer’s block and how she came to visit the Highlands for inspiration. She explained that she needed to learn more about diverse cultures and different traditions for her book. Victoria seemed very pleased by this. She told Jenna about how she was born and raised in Australia and loved how Issaquah had people from all over the world. Jenna asked Victoria if there would be any way that she could interview her for her book and Victoria happily agreed. They planned to meet the next day over frozen yogurt up the street at a place called TCBY to cool down in the unexpected heat.

end of chapter one

The Visit, Chapter Two

The next day at three o’clock, Jenna found herself buying frozen yogurt at TCBY. She sat down at a seat that with lights behind that kept changing color. She looked out the window and could see a restaurant called Zeeks Pizza. She made a mental note of trying it later. When Victoria came, Jenna and she exchanged greetings before wasting no time getting to the interview.

“Would you be ok being recorded?” asked Jenna as she pulled out her questions sheet.

“No problem!” Victoria happily answered. Jenna smiled brightly at Victoria.

“Thank you again for doing this Victoria!” Jenna started, “I just have a couple of questions so I won’t take much of your time,” said Jenna as she laughed. “The first question is, what is your favorite Australian food?”

“Hands down, Anzac Biscuits!” Victoria replied without even a moment of hesitation. “Not only are they delicious but they have a very good back story to them as well.”

“Wow! I’ll have to try them sometime,” Jenna said, smiling. “Next question, does your family have any traditions? These don’t necessarily have to apply to anything Australian,” asked Jenna.

“My family and I always go bowling on New Year’s Day. We’ve been doing it for seven years and it’s something we all look forward to. It gets us especially excited for the New Year,” smiled Victoria as she remembered their past New Year’s bowling trip.

“Do you believe it is important to keep culture in a family? If so, why?” Jenna asked as she ticked off all the answered questions on her questions sheet.

“Definitely! You always want to know where your roots are and it’s always fun to hear stories about your ancestors, to hear what they were like, because you descend from them. Where you come from, definitely plays a part in what makes you,” answered Victoria, sitting back in her seat as she finished her yogurt.

“Very nicely said!” Jenna was very pleased with Victoria’s answer. “And the last question, what do you like most about Australia?”

“The beach! I don’t even have to think about that!” laughed Victoria. “It was right next door to my house growing up and will always be a happy place for me like it was when I was child.”

“Thank you so much, Victoria!” Jenna replied, smiling. Jenna and Victoria hugged and then went their separate ways. Later that evening, Jenna sat down at the desk in her sister’s guest room and took out her laptop, ready to start typing. She couldn’t help but feel excited. She was already so inspired by Victoria and that was only interview number one.

*****

The next day, Jenna decided to go on a walk on one of the quiet streets next to her sister’s house. It was already starting to get chilly in Issaquah, even though it was still mid-august. This was new for Jenna, who was from LA and used to 90-degree weather until November. A cool daft of a wind blew near Jenna and in response, Jenna started rubbing her bare arms to keep from getting goose bumps.

“I cannot believe it has started to get chilly already,” said a lady who suddenly appeared right next to Jenna. Taken aback by the sudden appearance, Jenna gasped before chuckling a little.

“Oh! My gosh, you scared me!” laughed Jenna. “But, yes, I know! It’s only August. You would think that we would get a few more warm months before autumn weather started!”

“You must be new here if you’re not used to that already,” asserted the lady. “In Western Washington, the cold weather starts just a month before everyone else and the hot weather starts a month later.”

“Wow! I actually enjoy the cold so I can’t complain too much about that,” replied Jenna. “I’m Jenna and yes, like you said. I’m new here. I’ve just moved in with my sister for a couple of weeks.” Jenna held out her hand for the lady to shake.

“Oh! Nice to meet you Jenna! I’m Kasey,” said Kasey. “Does your sister live in this neighborhood?”

“Yes, actually! She lives two houses over.”

“Would your sister happen to be Katherine Medice?” asked Kasey.

“Yep, that’s her! Do you two know each other?” replied Jenna.

“Katherine is one of my good friends!” laughed Kasey. “Though, she didn’t say anything about you visiting the last time I saw her.”

“Well, it all happened very quickly. I’m writing a book where I interview women on their different family traditions and I really needed some inspiration. So, I called and asked if I could visit,” smiled Jenna.

“A book on family traditions? That seems interesting. If you’re ever low on interviews, you can always give me a call,” Kasey offered.

“I am very low on interviews at the moment! I’ve only had one so far. Would there be any possible way we could meet up later and I could interview you?” asked Jenna. She was very excited to get a second interview on the second day of her trip.

“That would be amazing! There’s a café that I love, down the street called Caffé Ladro. We could meet up there tomorrow and grab some coffee before the interview!” Kasey said excitedly.

“Great, sounds perfect!” smiled Jenna as she waved goodbye to Kasey and headed back home.

*****

“How was your walk?” Asked Katherine as she opened the refrigerator door and grabbed a sandwich for Jenna.

“It was amazing! This lady actually surprised me as I was walking and it turned out to be your friend, Kasey. We talked for some time and she’s agreed to letting me interview her.”

“Kasey? That is so great!” replied Katherine. She leaned across the counter before suddenly smiling. “Actually, I just had an idea! What if I called all my friends and asked if they would like to be interviewed for your book? I’m sure they would all love to! And then we can call a gathering at Zeeks, a pizza place only two minutes away from here, and you could do a mass interview?”

“That is such a great idea, Katherine!” yelled Jenna, in joyful surprise. “I would get at least 75% of my interviews from that!” Jenna hugged Katherine as they both were overcome with happiness for the sudden inspiration for Jenna’s book. Katherine, who always enjoyed making lists and getting ready for events, soon got to planning for the gathering with an already planned-out list of friends to call.

end of chapter two

The Visit, Chapter Three

The next day, Jenna pulled up at Caffé Ladro at ten o’clock in the morning. She ordered her coffee and as she waited for Kasey, set up her laptop for recording and pulled out her questions sheet. Jenna looked outside the big glass windows at the shops and restaurants, the RAM and Big Fish restaurants, and even a huge movie theater. She smiled, and realized that she had started to like Issaquah more and more, just like her sister predicted. Two minutes later, Kasey walked in.

“Good morning, Jenna!” said Kasey.

“Good morning!” replied Jenna. “Would you mind if I recorded you for the interview?”

“Not at all,” smiled Kasey.

“So, Kasey, do you have any traditions in your house?” Jenna got straight to asking her questions.

“Yes! I’m actually originally from Colombia so on the first day of every month our family bakes this soup called Changua, which is a milk soup with egg and we have it for breakfast,” Kasey said as she reminisced of how the soup tasted.

“Wow! What are some of your other favorite foods from Colombia?” Asked Jenna.

“Bandeja Paisa, or just some typical tamales but my ultimate favorite has got to be Pescado Frito. I am a seafood lover!” Kasey was in full delight talking about her traditional foods.

“Are there any celebrations you enjoy the most?” Jenna was full of interest in Kasey’s interview.

“I love Christmas, a lot! It’s a time to be with your family and just enjoy one another, which is something I really value. It is also why Thanksgiving is my second favorite celebration, and also because I love food, if you couldn’t already tell,” laughed Kasey.

Jenna laughed right along with Kasey as she replied, “I am with you on that one! That also brings me to my next question, how important do you think it is that we value family and tradition?”

Kasey smiled. “Family and tradition are two things that are very dear to my heart. They are both things that bring me back to my roots and keep me humble. They are the main source for my happiness. I do not know where I would be, or who I would be without them. For me, and I would hope for everyone, they are a vital part of my life.”

“Beautifully said, Kasey. I agree with you completely. I have one last question. What tradition is the most important for you?” Asked Jenna.

“I don’t think there is a tradition that I value the most. The great part of traditions is that they bring you the feeling of home and I think for me that feeling is very important for me. So, in a sense, that is my most important tradition, the feeling of home,” Kasey happily replied Jenna.

“Wow! It was an honor interviewing you, Kasey. Thank you so much and thank you for introducing me to this amazing café,” laughed Jenna.

“The pleasure was all mine,” Kasey said as she laughed alongside Jenna. The pair shook hands and went their own ways.

Three days later, Katherine and Jenna were all ready for the gathering. Katherine had called seven of her closest friends to come for the mass interview at Zeeks Pizza. Jenna and Katherine had just finished placing their order when the whole group of seven ladies walked in. Katherine stood up to introduce everyone.

“Jenna, this is Margot, Kendra, Nadia, Halley, Chloe, Anne and Anastasia,” Katherine said as she pointed out all the ladies to Jenna. “And ladies, this is my sister, Jenna. As I have informed you, she is interviewing all of you for her book!” Hi’s and Hello’s were exchanged between everyone.

“Hi everyone! My name is Jenna, as Katherine said,” laughed Jenna. “Thank you all so much for doing this; it is greatly appreciated.” Jenna pulled out her laptop as she wrote down everyone’s names. “Now, would anyone not be okay with being recorded?” No one objected. “Great! Let’s get started. So, where is everyone from?”

“I’m from Ireland!” said Margot.

“India,” replied Nadia.

“Kendra and I are both from here, actually!” laughed Chloe.

“I’m from Norway,” smiled Halley.

“And lastly, I’m from Alabama,” said Anne. Jenna quickly brought out her question sheets.

“Wow! So nice to meet you all!” smiled Jenna as she started with her questions. “What’s the thing you love most about home?”

“The food!” said Chloe, Nadia and Halley at once. Everyone laughed at their unplanned synchronized answer.

“I love my fried chicken!” Anne replied, laughing. “It’s a great part about being from the south!”

“Funny enough, I actually enjoy the rain here but not the bears!” Chloe said as everyone laughed.

“Irish accents are my favorite part of Ireland!” Margot cheerfully said.

The ladies talked about their traditions, families and the food they loved for almost an hour. They all had something different to say when Jenna asked them about why family was important to them. Halley said it kept her from missing home too much, while Nadia said that she enjoyed all the festivities and culture behind traditions. Anne agreed with Halley but also said that tradition made you who you were. Kendra and Chloe both reminisced about home and said that traditions kept them tethered to their family. Margot made everyone laugh when she said she wouldn’t be Irish without her traditions.

Jenna went home feeling completely satisfied with the interviews and was floating on a cloud with inspiration. As she got home, she set her laptop down on the kitchen counter and got to washing the dishes. As she washed the dishes, she and Katherine talked about ‘how divine’ that was and what more they could do so that Jenna could finish her last three interviews. Jenna had her head turned, looking at Katherine, as she reached over to grab a plate. She put the plate in the water before she looked down and realized that what she had put in the sink was her laptop, not the plate. Jenna’s immediate reaction was to scream.

“OH NO, OH NO!” cried Jenna. Katherine, immediately startled turned to see what was wrong.

“Oh gosh, Jenna! What happened?” Katherine said calmly, trying to bring Jenna’s screaming down.

“My laptop! I thought it was a plate and I put it in the sink before I realized what it was!” Jenna was hyperventilating and talking in between breaths.

end of chapter three

The Visit, Chapter Four

“It’s ok! It’s ok, Jenna!” Katherine said as she tried to calm down her younger sister. “My friend is a Technician, and there are many shops around here that would be able to fix it.” Katherine had to sooth Jenna for over 30 minutes before Jenna was able to calm down.

The Visit by Vanshika Chauhaun Chapter 4The next day, Katherine and Jenna went to visit a tech shop to see if the computer could be fixed. As they walked in, Jenna tried to calm herself down so that whatever news she got, she could take well. Katherine walked to the front of the store and asked for her friend Charlene, but Jenna stayed to the side not wanting to hear the computer’s diagnosis right away. Charlene and Katherine exchanged some friendly talk before looking at Jenna’s computer. Charlene tried to switch on Jenna’s computer but was only met with grey screen that looked like a TV channel when it no longer worked. Jenna then came over to talk with Charlene and explain what had happened. After two minutes of Jenna talking, Charlene smiled and told Katherine and Jenna, “Jenna, you are very lucky. The water that hit your computer did not damage all of it. You will be able to get all of your saved work back but I would recommend not using your computer again since it will be very slow and glitchy.” Jenna almost started crying from happiness. She hugged Charlene and thanked her a thousand times.

When Jenna got home, she made sure all of her work was saved and went online to look at different computers that she could buy. Katherine came in to give her lunch and was surprised to see that Jenna had been browsing online for more than five hours. “Jenna! You have to take a break, You will find a good computer soon enough; I am sure of it,” Katherine said.

“I know, Katherine. But I have to get to work as soon as I can so I must buy a computer really quickly so I can finish the interviews and get back to LA.” Jenna replied.

“Well, why don’t you take a break? I was actually heading over to see my friend’s mom in a retirement home and if you wanted, you could come with me. She would love to see a new face,” coaxed Katherine.

“That doesn’t seem like a bad idea, Katherine” said Jenna, “We could even stop by a computer store on the way back and look at new computers for my story!”

Jenna and Katherine arrived at the retirement home an hour later and asked to see a woman named Debby Brown. When they were lead into Debby’s room, Jenna noticed that the walls were really bare and everything looked monotone. In the middle of the room was a woman who looked 70 years old. She had long brown hair and wore glasses as she knitted what looked like a scarf. Jenna smiled as Katherine ran up and hugged the woman. Katherine introduced the two saying, “Jenna, this is Debby, my best friend’s mom. Debby, this is my sister, Jenna!” Debby and Jenna shook hands then poured both the women a glass of tea.

“How is life, Katherine?” Debby asked.

“It’s going well! Jenna here is writing a book so I’ve just been helping her on that,” Katherine replied.

“A book! Wow! What’s it about?” Debby asked.

“It’s on the traditions of different women and their family lives. I’ve been writing for about almost a year now but I definitely got most of my inspiration in the few weeks I’ve been in Washington. Where are you from?” Jenna asked.

“I’m originally from Nebraska,” replied Debby. “But I moved to Washington in 1970 and I have been here since.” Debby talked about her life story for the next hour and in that hour, Jenna grew very fond of her. By the end of the visit, Jenna was really touched by Debby and her life. She learned about Debby’s hardships, her childhood, her happiness and how the good things in her life had outweighed the bad. Jenna realized that the whole fiasco with her computer was just a small problem in the scheme of life and how her freaking out like it was the end of the world was definitely not worth it. After talking with Debby, Jenna also realized how impersonal all her interviews had been. She was just talking to people for her book and not getting to really know them. Debby and Jenna exchanged phone numbers and Jenna promised to visit again.

On the way home, Jenna quickly stopped at a computer store and bought one of the computers there, not really caring about the price or how many GB it had. She had had a burst of inspiration and wanted to get to work right away. Jenna decided to go into each story and change it up a bit, not only talking about the different traditions of women but why they enjoyed doing the traditions and what brought them to making it a tradition. She called each person she had interviewed to get these extra bits of information.

Then, after finishing and polishing these interviews, Jenna realized she had three more interviews left to do. But, she wanted to make these last interviews special.  She decided to make them very personal and asked her sister, Katherine if she could do an interview on her and her daughter, Alicia. Katherine immediately agreed and they sat down that next evening in a cupcake shop called Pinka Bella because Alicia wanted some sweets. Pinka Bella was in Grand Ridge Plaza, a mall that Jenna really liked shopping in, and in front of the movie theater that Katherine, Alicia and Jenna enjoyed going to.

“Let’s start off simple,” Jenna instructed, starting the interview off. “What are your favorite holidays and why?”

“Christmas because I get presents!” claimed Alicia. Jenna and Katherine both laughed at Alicia’s silliness.

“I like Thanksgiving because we can all get together and talk about why we are thankful for all that we have,” replied Katherine.

Jenna smiled and asked them, “What are your favorite traditions with your family and why do you enjoy them? Do they bring you happiness or do you only do them for the sake of having traditions?”

“Every New Year’s Eve, Alicia and I go ice skating and it’s so much fun! It started out as something we did because just wanted to go ice skating but it turned out to be bonding thing we do now because not only is it fun but it’s time we spend together having fun so I think that that is way more important than it is being a tradition,” explained Katherine.

“What do you love about your home and do you miss anything about California?” asked Jenna.

“I love the culture here. Everyone is so kind to each other and the diversity of cultures is what brings us together. It’s truly a great place.  I sometimes miss the sun in California but I wouldn’t give up anything about Issaquah for the world,” Katherine said.

Jenna smiled, slowly realizing that she, too, agreed. “Why do you believe that people enjoy doing traditions and why do you enjoy it?” asked Jenna.

“Well, I believe having a constant thing that you do with your family, or whoever your tradition is with, is kind of a way that brings you closer to them because you know that no matter what, you’re going to read The Night Before Christmas on Christmas Eve or whatever your tradition is. I enjoy it for the same reasons because I know that my traditions are a thing that I’m going to follow through with no matter what and it will be fun,” replied Katherine.

“I completely agree, Katherine! Now I have a question for Alicia. Why do you think it’s important to never forget where you come from, like, will you ever forget Issaquah when you go to college?” Jenna asked her niece.

“No! I won’t forget at all!” Alicia exclaimed. “I was born here and I love it here. My friends are here and so is my family. I think if I forgot about this place I would completely lose all my happy memories and I wouldn’t know things about myself, like how I got this scar on my knee.” Alicia pointed to a little scar shaped like an upside-down U on her knee. “I would forget that I was chasing my friend’s dog and that I fell down and scratched it and that was a really good memory, even if it hurt. And that’s not something I want to forget.”

“Wow! Good job, Alicia! That is something I’ve never thought about before. You would definitely lose a lot of happy memories if you forget your roots. It would be forgetting a part of yourself and that wouldn’t be good,” Jenna said.

“No it wouldn’t!” Alicia chimed in. “I actually had a question for you, Aunt Jenna! Who’s your last interview going to be with? Is it going to be with someone special?”

end of chapter four

The Visit, Chapter Five

“Well,” Jenna mumbled, “that actually brings me to me ask…I was wondering if you both would like to interview me for the last interview? I wanted the readers to get a feel for who I really am, coming from the perspective of people I really love. And I thought it would be cool to see the difference between a 10-year-old interviewer and an adult interviewer.”

“I think that would be an honor!” said Katherine, “and I am sure that Alicia would agree!” Alicia smiled and bobbed her head up and down, indicating a very excited yes, before taking a big bite of her cupcake. Jenna and Katherine laughed again at Alicia’s eagerness to finish her cupcake.

For the next hour, Jenna was interviewed by her sister and her niece. They talked about why Jenna chose to write the book and what things Jenna enjoyed to do in her time off. Jenna talked about the tradition that she and Katherine had of prank calling each other on Christmas and how it got more and more extravagant every year. Last year Jenna had actually paid a man to scare Katherine on the phone! You could see the difference of the interviewers based on the questions that were asked, like whether Jenna enjoyed college or if Jenna believed the Yeti monster was real. It was a time that really bonded Katherine, Jenna and Alicia and Jenna believed that it was her best interview yet.

The next morning Jenna awoke thinking about her future. The reason she came to Issaquah was to finish her book and at first she didn’t even want to leave Los Angeles. Now, after finishing all the interviews for her book it was time for her to go back to LA. But for some reason she didn’t want to. She had fallen in love with the people and the culture and, even though the weather wasn’t as constant as LA, she couldn’t bring herself to pack. All of a sudden Jenna heard a rapping noise on her door. She got scared for a second but then realized it was only Katherine.

“Come in!” Jenna shouted. Katherine came in and sadly smiled at Jenna.

“You almost done packing?” Katherine asked.

“Nowhere near,” Jenna replied. “I haven’t even started! I just keep imagining my home back in LA and I don’t want to go back. Truth be told, I don’t want to leave here. It’s such an amazing place with the nicest people and the best food. My story happened because of this place, and I’ve just fallen in love with it.”

“Well, why don’t you stay here?” Katherine said, surprising Jenna.

“I can’t just stay here Katherine…I’d have to sell my house in LA and buy a home here. I can’t keep living in your house for the rest of my life, plus my publisher is in LA…” Jenna trailed off. She took a deep breath and threw her hands up in the air, “And despite all that, I still want to stay here! I’ve met so many wonderful people and it’s so gorgeous, I would even be able to deal with the inconstant weather!”

“Jenna! Do what your heart tells you! I’m telling you, you can stay here if you truly love this place. We will work it out. You can go to LA for a couple of weeks, sell your house, talk to your publisher and tie up loose ends, I’m sure there’s no shortage of people wanting to buy houses in Los Angeles! And then you can come back here, we’re not going anywhere, and you can stay in my house for as long as it takes you to a find a house you like in the Highlands. We can work it out if it’s what you really want,” Katherine said quickly, getting more excited with every word.

“Do you think we could?” Jenna asked. “Oh, it would be so wonderful to be near each other again and I’m sure mom and dad would appreciate it as well!” At this point Jenna and Katherine were full of happiness and excitement at the possibility of living near each other again.

The next day, Jenna had packed her things and was putting everything in her car for LA. She gave her niece, Alicia, a big hug and kissed her on the forehead. “Don’t worry,” Jenna said, “I’ll be back soon enough and this time, for good.” Jenna gave one last hug to her Katherine and got in her car. She backed out of the driveway and waved as she drove away.

A couple days later, Jenna was in Los Angeles. She had called her real estate agent and told her to put her house on the market. She had also called her publisher; He said he was ok with Jenna moving to Washington, only if she would be willing to fly back every other month for a meeting, since her book was almost done. Jenna eagerly agreed.

A couple weeks later, Jenna had successfully sold her house and tied up all the loose ends she needed to.  In a couple of days she would be on her way back to Issaquah and Jenna couldn’t have been happier. She had decided to not tell Katherine about her coming home but instead make it a surprise for her and Alicia.

A few days later and Jenna was in front of Katherine’s door, suitcases in hand and ready to start her new life in Issaquah. She knocked twice before seeing a confused Katherine open the door. As soon as Katherine saw Jenna, she threw the big platter of cookies that were in her hand and gave Jenna a big hug.

The Visit by Vanshika Chauhaun Chapter 5“Omigosh Jenna! What a surprise! Is this why you haven’t been returning my calls?” Katherine excitedly asked.

“Yup! I didn’t want my arrival to be expected, I feel like it would make my news more of a big deal!” Jenna replied.

“What news?” Katherine asked.

‘I’m moving to Issaquah! Everything back in LA’s been taken care of and I’m here to stay!” Jenna said.

“Yay! That’s so great!” shouted Katherine. Katherine looked at the ground and realized she had dropped the cookies she was making, “Oh no! My cookies! Oh well, it’s ok. It was all worth it!” Alicia woke up because of all the commotion and came downstairs. Once she realized her aunt was in the living room, she ran into her arms, giving her a huge hug. Jenna looked around at Katherine and Alicia, finally feeling happy and like her life was complete, after feeling so second place to Katherine her whole life. She engulfed both Alicia and Katherine in her arms and smiled to herself, ready for her life to begin.

THE END

About the Author

Vanshika is one of our resident, volunteer writers for Connections. She chose to offer a fictional story for our readers, one that was inspired by the people of Issaquah Highlands. Vanshika has lived in Issaquah Highlands since 2007. She will be a Junior at Issaquah High School next year (2017-18).