Secrets: the dark side of Espionage

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Broken Dreams

kylie pov

It’s been 4 days since that disastrous picnic, after I left and went home I’ve been moping in my room and my phone’s been bombarded with texts from my friends. I haven’t even gone to the bureau. I wish that I didn’t let Abby’s comment get to me but she really did hit a nerve. That’s one of the only things that can make me break down as much as I try to not let it.

I’m a recovering anorexic patient. I was diagnosed 3 years ago and was in rehab for a year until the doctor decided I was okay to try and lead a normal life. They said the main cause was stress, home life, school life, the bureau( not that they knew about that) and ballet. Ballet was my life, I spent as much time as I could perfecting every turn, leap, spin as possible to get into the National Ballet Academy.

I reach under my bed and pull out a pair of satin, cream pointe shoes.

FLASHBACK


4 weeks till audition

“Darling, come downstairs I’ve got a surprise for you” dad yells from the bottom of the stairs. He barely ever gets me gifts so I run down to see what it is. He’s holding what looks like a shoebox, my heart sinks slightly because I don’t really want more shoes, I have enough to last me a while, honestly, I should give some to charity.

“I know you have that audition for Ballet and I haven’t seen to be as committed as I should but I hope this will change your mind.”

He opens the box and I see the most beautiful cream pointe shoes with sparkling sequins inside. I look at him in disbelief and he smiles gesturing for me to ake them. They feel so soft and delicate and I instantly love them.

“Thank you so so so so much dad!!, I love them”, I say jumping up and down then giving him a massive hug.

2 weeks till audition

I’m in the studio practising my piece, I’ve decided to dance to The Night We Met because it’s quite sad and emotional but that means I use lots of emotion and expression to tell the story and really dramatise it. If this was a few days ago I would be excited but now I’m just full of nerves and have barely eaten, I should but a ballerina should be slim right?

keep telling yourself that

I’ll be fine, more practice over and over until it’s perfect, the smallest mistake of hesitation could cost me.


11 days till audition

we’re having dinner and Hanna made lasagna with some bread and lots of iced tea. it looks so appetizing and tempting but I need to have strong willpower. I push away the aching hunger. The bread is probably full of fat and loads of calories and so’s the lasagna so I mustn’t eat lots. Hanna puts a serving on my plate, it looks small from a distance but once it’s in front of me, it looks like a mountain. I could put on weight just by looking at it. Vivian’s just eating it all, not sure why cause she needs to keep her model body.

then why are you starving yourself huh?

“Kylie, how’s your practice going,” my dad asks.

“good,” I simply reply.

“just good, Kylie no, it needs to be perfect, you’re representing our family, we can’t have only one out of two daughters becoming successful, what will the women at my social club say” Hanna buts in, thinking of herself as usual.

“Hanna dear that’s a bit harsh, but kylie you must put in more time and effort, a lot is riding on this”, he emphasizes,” I let you focus on ballet because you said that would be better for you than working towards becoming CEO of my firm, there is no backup plan if this fails you understand?” he says drilling the fear and pressure to my mind.

“dad, don’t you’re stressing her out more than she already is okay, you’ve seen her dance, she’ll do fine” Vivian surprisingly says, coming to my support.

I smile gratefully at her but that doesn’t stop the many doubts whirling in my head. what if I haven’t put in enough time? I don’t have a backup plan apart from the bureau and I don’t want to be stuck there forever. My jetes last time were a bit low and my turns were slightly wobbly. At the audition, they’ll pick up that type of thing. I’ve got to utilize the spare time I have. Even when I’m at the bureau I’ll practice in one of the training rooms so I’m fully prepared. Failure is not and never was an option.


1 week till audition, at the bureau

I’m running through my routine again and it’s getting there but isn’t perfect. the routine is very lyrical because at the Academy they do all dance styles.

I had all and then most of you
Some and now none of you

I split leap up in the air and gracefully roll back to a standing position. I do a needle then handstand into a backbend. I look in the mirror and see a graceful dancer although my expression is full of despair.

I am not the only traveller

Who has not repaid his debt

I’ve been searching for a trail to follow again
Take me back to the night we met

I do a series of turns and soft graceful jetes. I finally finish with a firebird and land softly on the floor.
I hear someone clapping from the door. It's Marco, standing there with a massive proud expression on his face. I smile shyly and walk over to him.
"That look's amazing, you'll be accepted in for sure," he says confidently.
"No don't jinx it" I reply.
He just laughs and pulls me in for a hug. I feel self-conscious I don't really want him to realize I've lost some weight and make a big deal out of it so I lightly hug him back.
"See you soon okay," he says pulling away and walking out the room.
Part of me wishes he did notice just so I could stop. I'm in too deep, I don't think I can stop.


Day of audition
I'm backstage at the academy waiting to perform my routine, some of the girls in my class are also auditioning. I'm close to the end and people have already made so many mistakes which would most likely cost them. The judges are emotionless but make slight nods or noises of approval and disapproval. My hands are shaking and I can't seem to get them to stop. I really don't need to have a panic attack right before this audition.
Suddenly, I feel a familiar touch on my shoulder. I turn around and see Marco smiling at me. I'm pretty sure my mouth drops in shock and I hold my arms out silently. He gets the message and hugs me. It's comforting and I feel so safe and my nerves start to die down. He softly rubs my back and softly hums close to my ear. we pull apart and he just stares intently at me.
"You came to watch me," I say softly," I honestly thought you wouldn't".
"I had to come to see you, I'm still invested in your future even if it doesn't seem like it. Plus, Cara said you'd be nervous."
"Thanks for thinking of me, are the others here?" I ask tentatively.
"Yep, front row."
Announcement: Kylie Rhodes to the stage, please.
"I've got to go," I say hurriedly giving him another hug.
"Okay, just so you know, f you fall apart, I'll be there to catch you," He says looking a bit bashful.
I smile and unexpectedly kiss him on the cheek and run onto the stage.

I see my friends and family in the audience all looking cheerful. It gives me a bit of confidence and I start to dance. I'm doing okay then I stumble. It's a stupid mistake but it pushes me harder and I'm suddenly doing way better than I expected and performing every move perfectly and confidently.
hungry, starving, skipped breakfast all for this?
I push the feelings out of my mind and continue. I finish with a firebird. There's a silence then the crowd erupts in applause.
"Kylie, that was amazing bravo, we could clearly see how much you were enjoying it!" one of the judges remarks.
I was? I felt so exhausted, empty hollowed out.
Madame Sylvie stands up and says," so we know you can dance, but tell us why you want the place"
My mind draws to a halt, all the reasons I came up with months ago has gone and I can't find any sort of motivation. There's a long silence before I finally reply,
"I've worked extremely hard for this but it hasn't felt like work, I've enjoyed every moment. The joy that comes from perfecting every turn, every leap, every move is what makes me so happy and I want to keep doing that." the lie comes so easily and I smile my perfect and most convincing smile.
They all seem pleased with that answer.
"One last question Kylie, are you eating properly?", the judge nx5 to Sylvie questions.
"I'm eating fine I'm just naturally..." fat, chunky, solid "slim," I say.
"Okay but you need to understand that this is a very stressful environment, we can not have girls staring themselves to fit in," Sylvie says.
"I promise I won't, my devotion won't jeopardise my health." Another lie.
"Thank you, there will be a letter to say who's gotten in but I think it's safe to say you have nothing to worry about" She smiles, then gestures for me to leave.
I receive hugs from everyone. It was all worth it wasn't it?...
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