Transcript for Chapter 7A
PopChromatic Chapter 7 - Facets
The title page features a moment where Amber, dressed as an idol, talks happily with other Bouquet contestants. In the background, Jade tries to stay hidden from Amber behind a large fichus.
Chapter opens with a repeat of a line that Justice said to Jade in the previous chapter:
Justice: Whatever makes it fun, just do it.
A pair of sheets are hung in a child's playroom like curtains. This is Jade and Amber's old room; near the curtains we can see evidence of the things they liked to do when they were little. In one corner, there's a model of a princess castle and a doll. In the other corner, there's a box of crayons. Pictures are taped all over the walls, pictures of bugs and other things drawn by a child. One of the girls announces from behind the curtains.
Voice: Presenting, Amber and Jade's Western Theater!
Jade and Amber's father and mother are smiling, waiting expectantly. Mr. Smith has short, mid-toned wavy hair and light facial hair on his jaw. He wears a loose, long-sleeved shirt. His style is similar to his wife's; that is, earthy or Bohemian. Both seem to fall closer to the non-conformist side of the spectrum than to the conformist side.
A voice sings a tune from behind the sheets. A small hand begins to pull back one of the sheets and a dog's nose pokes out through the gap.
Voice: Doo de-do do. Do-de doo doo.
The sheets are pulled back, revealing a Western scene. There are two little blonde girls, aged maybe six or seven. We know this is Jade and Amber, but because they are both wearing their natural blonde hair color it's not really possible to discern which girl is which from the text. One of the girls is dressed as a cowboy and riding the family's yellow labrador as though it's a horse. The other girl is wearing a dress and is roped to a saguaro cactus made out of cardboard. The cactus is slightly taller than the girls are. There's a simple backdrop behind the girls with a mountain and more saguaros drawn on it, and a plastic horse model stands in front of it to imply depth.
The girls smile and sing a song without music.
Girl dressed as cowboy: I'm riding on the range to save a damsel!
Girl in dress: Oh, won't somebody save me I'm a damsel!
The "cowboy" swings her arm to the tune. The dog is completely unaffected by any of it.
Girl dressed as cowboy: My trusty pony and I are on our way!
Girl in dress: This cactus has been poking me all day!
After the performance, the flashback begins to fade while the parents applaud.
Jade: [Times like that really were fun. When did it get so complicated?]
Back in the present, music begins to play in the room where the idols give their performance. Jade stands quietly, with her face down-turned and her eyes closed, preparing to sing. Suddenly, her eyes open and her face brightens. She holds her hands up near her face and grins; her face is cheerful to a degree that is out-of-character. It looks like the childishly happy faces from her flashback.
Justice watches, enigmatic, from the darkened viewing room.
Justice: [Jade, what are you doing?]
Jade begins to perform in a dorky way, basically mocking the over-acting that she attributes to idol performances.
Jade: The world is watching while my dreams are coming true.
She thrusts out a hip, points a finger, and makes silly face. Then she puts a hand behind her head and shakes the other one in front of her chest.
Jade: I'm preparing for my destiny with you! Uh...some words about flowers and then...
She poses with her fingers poking her cheeks and crosses her eyes. Justice thinks while he watches.
Justice: [She probably thinks she's being funny, but this is a thousand times better than before.]
Jade: ...a stupid pose with my hands!
Justice: [Being a little over-dramatic is natural for her. And as long as she's intentionally trying to be a jerk she can get some control over it. That weird self-confidence is giving her control over her voice, too.]
Justice: [But this is Jade's real gift, and she doesn't even realize it.]
Jade's grin is huge and her face practically sparkles with energy. She has her hands held near her head while she keeps performing.
Justice: [Her face is so unique and expressive that the camera can't flatten it. Not everyone has the ability to push their personality through the digital barrier.]
Jade strikes another crazy pose; could it maybe be The Sprinkler?
Justice: [She's doing it without even trying.]
Justice smirks and crosses his arms.
Justice: [I don't know how she's going to get through the second verse, though. She doesn't know it at all.]
Jade smiles deviously and grabs the mic.
She holds the mic like a tough guy and starts to rap.
Jade: Your love is the best that I've ever seen.
Jade's face has changed completely. No longer cute, she's dripping with badass rapper attitude. It's still more like mocking than anything; it might even be called cartoonish.
Jade: [I'm gonna tell the world that this cheese is green.]
In response, Justice is cartoonishly shocked.
Jade: [Gonna make it hot like a coffee pot. Gonna rap this track for Sir-censored-A-Lot.]
Justice: [Give me a break.]
He turns to his dad and tries to smile.
Justice: At least she's comfortable with the mic. Most girls can't even bring themselves to touch it.
Harrison's not listening; he staring at the monitor with a mixture of interest and horror.
Harrison: She's butchering my song.
Justice grins, but a sweatdrop gives away his nervousness.
Justice: Just think of it as creative expression.
Harrison: Uh-huh. You know I'm not going to be able to air any of this.
In the background, Jade's rapping has devolved into a string of unprintable words.
Justice: That's probably what she's counting on.
Justice goes back to seriously watching the performance and thinking to himself.
Justice: [Last is the hook and the final chorus. Everyone in America can sing this part, so there's no excuse not to get these lyrics right.]
Jade's attitude changes again. She's relaxed, holding the mic normally, and she has her body oriented away from the camera. But she's coy when she looks at it.
Jade: Listen to me.
Justice watches dubiously.
Jade leaves the mic stand behind and saunters up to the camera, crooning.
Jade: Watch me twinkle, watch me shine.
Justice's face goes slack. He doesn't know what to think about this version of Jade.
Jade sings directly into the camera. Her eyes are heavy-lidded and there's a seductive, dewy quality to her performance reminiscent of a lounge singer.
Jade: Watch me show the world you're mine.
Justice stares, dazed.
Jade: I'm shy so please don't trick me. If I'm the one you want, then pick me.
Justice: [How many times have I heard this song? But never like this.]
Jade runs the mic cord through her fingers.
Jade: Keep me beside you for an hour.
Justice: [She's joking. She's just screwing with me, and she has no idea how powerful it is.]
Jade: and I'll be your flirty flower.
Jade replaces the mic when the song is over. Without waiting for instructions, she walks out of the room through the door marked "Interviews." The only thing left in the camera shot is the microphone.