'Rosechan! Wake up!'
'Are you ok??'
Rosechan woke with a gasp. Her friends were around her, shaking her and trying to wake her up.
'He's got me! Slappy wants to turn me into a doll!' She sobbed then hushed herself so that she wouldn't wake the other campers. There was also a storm out.
'Sh, it's ok, you were having a bad dream, that's all.' Niky gave her a hug trying to calm her down, before she had an asthma attack. Sandora and Alicechan hugged her too.
'But its trying to tell me that Slappy is gonna do something terrible! I'm sorry I woke you guys up!'She cried. 'He seems to be controlling even my dreams. Thanks guys, I feel better now.'
She felt so embarrassed at having cried about a nightmare. After she had calmed down, she and the other 2 went back to sleep. Her pillow suddenly felt hard and uncomfortable. But she had no time to think about that, it was still 3 :00 and they would have to get up in a few others. Comforted by her friends and the soft sound of raindrops, she soon drifted off to sleep again.
It was morning and everyone had to take a shower, which was merely a splash around in the freezing lake, despite their protests and screams. After breakfast everyone went to tidy their tents and resume their activities. They were to draw a still life today, and they could be as creative as they wanted. Rosechan suddenly remembered her pillow had felt funny last night, so she checked underneath it. She shrieked when she came face to face with a grinning Slappy..
'So I've been sleeping on you the whole night?' She said angrily.
'Hey Rosechan, he would make a great model for your still life,' Miss Court said, appearing in their tent.
'But..' Rosechan protested.
There was no time, so they all went into the art room this time, as it was raining that day.
'Shes right slave,' Slappy said. 'And you'd better do a good job of it!'
'Yes, master Slappy!' Rosechan retorted sarcastically as she set him down on the table in front of her then got her easel ready. Some of the others were already hard at work. How on earth was she going to do this? Maybe she should have just chosen something simple for her still life, like an apple.
Rosechan made a start. She knew there was no way she'd be able to draw Slappy. She'd just have to practice again and again. Half an hour later she had 50 crumpled pieces of paper on the floor. She sighed as she glanced over at her friends art, they were amazing. She gave herself a few minutes then composed herself and picked up her pencil again. Not only was she to draw Slappy, she also had to think of doing it more creatively than a usual portrait of him, which she had already messed up hundreds of times.
'Lunch time!' Miss Court said, and as all the campers were engrossed in their work, the teachers and counsellors had decided to give them a little treat by preparing them lunch. And they could eat in the art room this time. Rosechan sighed with relief. This was perfect, as this way she didn't have to worry about leaving Slappy by himself and could keep her eye on him the whole time. Alicechan's piano playing could be heard from the music studio. She was amazingly gifted at music. After lunch everyone resumed their tasks. Rosechan noticed that her friends had finished their still life and moved onto other tasks. Sandora and Niky had amazing talents, she was sure their art would be exhibited in many galleries. In fact, it probably already was.
She closed her eyes, trying to think of something that would inspire her. All she could see was that dreadful scene from her nightmare, being bound to the work bench with Slappy reading from the book. She took a deep breath, then put her paintbrush to paper. She thought she just might somehow draw better with paints than pencils. And then, she didn't know what, but something suddenly came over her. She began painting. Not just usual painting, but with passion. It was as if some inexplicable force were painting instead, using her as a medium and she couldn't stop until she had finished. After about half an hour she stopped, surprised at what had just come over her. But that wasnt all. She felt inspired (or was it compelled?) to do another one. She painted boldly again, but taking less time to finish. By the time she was done, she was exhausted. She had a few sips of water. Then it was time for everyone to stop, and Miss Court and Miss Winter came around to check everyone's work.
'Lovely!' They praised everyone's art. Niky and Sandora got the most praise.
'Your art will be in the school exhibition when we get back,' Miss Court decided. Rosechan beamed with pride and admiration for her 2 friends.
'Aaaaargh!' Miss winter's scream shattered the air. A few of the campers jumped, others dropped their brushes in shock.
'This is an abomination!!' Shouted Miss winter, disgusted. 'I know we said to express yourself freely. But this is a disgrace!!' She pointed a shaking finger at Rosechan's work. Miss Winter was a bit of a religious fanatic and passionately against anything that was Gothic or horror, which she believed to be the devils work. Surprised, Rosechan had a look.
The first painting depicted a woman in a black dress, chained to a work bench in something that resembled a dungeon. Opposite her Slappy reading from the book. And next to Slappy a doll in a see-through case. The colours were dark yet bold. The second painting was a portrait of Slappy, in all his evil glory. Rosechan gasped. Had she really painted this? It wasn't her style. Yet it had been painted by her own hands. Niky and Sandora too had turned to look at her paintings.
'Wow!' Exclaimed Sandora.
'This is beautiful, we didn't know you had it in you!' Niky cried in amazement.
'Uuh, neither did I,' admitted Rosechan sheepishly. Miss Court had come over too.
'Very different from what we had in mind, but.....' she stopped to look at the paintings again.'Not bad at all!'
'I beg your pardon?' Miss Winter raised an eyebrow.
'I like it! In fact, it should be featured along with the other paintings in our exhibition back at school!'
'You can't be serious,Miss Court, this is the most demonic art I've ever seen! This student needs to see the school doctor,' Miss Winter added nastily.
'But isnt that what this camp is all about, expressing yourself freely as much as you can? That is what we should be encouraging these young people to do. You may not like it Miss Winter, and you don't have to. But I think its wonderful and I know many will agree with me.' Miss Court was open minded and a bit of a hippie.
'Yeah!' Cried the other students. Outraged, Miss Winter didn't utter another word and left to inspect the dance troupe and the composers.
Rosechan was very happy, not to mention relieved.'Thanks miss, but I really dont deserve this, you know what I'm usually like. Still,' she added, 'thank you so much for giving me this chance. I won't let you down, or any of my fellow artists!' And they all had a group hug. They had a few more hours before dinner, so they were set a photography task, something Rosechan enjoyed even more as she was much better at it that art and she didn't have to spend long hours to get it right.