Rhoda shut down the internet connection, and leaned back on her chair, smiling confidently.  "You said you've got good news?" she asked.  "Well, top that."

"Oh, yeah, I can top that!" Zoe replied.  "I'm talkin' Mount Everest here!  I got a letter from Stella, saying the same thing!"

"Oooh, let's hear it!"

"You're not going to believe this!  Not only is Stella coming back to Thundermist to make a movie, but she wants me to help work on it!"

"No way!"

"Yes way, Rhoda!  She wants ME to be her costume designer!"

"Cut it out!  Well, don't just stand there!  If it's not in Braille, read it to me!"

"Okay, here it is (ahem)...

    "Dear Zoe and Rhoda...

    "Sorry I've been too busy to write more often, but you'll be thrilled to know the reason: As per my demands, my agent actually found a respectable, well-written role for me.  After what Mary-Kate and Ashley had been through, there's no way I'd ever do that kind of cookie-cutter slapstick trash.  I don't have time to write out all the details, but I can tell you that it's a comedy.

    "Even better, it's a period-piece that takes place in the 1890s, so that will give me a real opportunity to show everyone that I'm not just some dumb teen, but that I do, in fact, have some acting range!

    "Regardless of what kind of movie it is, I would have written to tell you the news; but I would also be honored if you would be my costume designer.  You always were a great artist, and a whiz in history, so I know that your designs will have an authentic look.

    "If I remember your Mom, I'm sure she would have reservations about this.  But I can assure her that this movie is a clean, family-friendly, old-style, screwball comedy.  I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes, so there's nothing about the story that you would need to watch in secret.  Of course, I expect that you'd get her permission, anyway.

    "I've arranged to send you a copy of the script.  Now, mind you, I had to really wrestle with the producer about that!  But he agreed, as long as you promise to keep it to yourself, and never let that script leave your house!

    "I'll be in Thundermist soon.  After I get settled, I'll see if we can hook up.

    "Your best bud, Stella."

  Zoe and Rhoda let loose with a high-pitched aqueal, normally reserved for less-serious girls.  Their mother could hear it from downstairs.  "Ouch!" she complained, half-kiddingly.  "That adds a whole new dimension to the term 'pierced ears.'  What's the commotion?"

"I've already heard this news report about a dozen times," Rhoda answered.  "But I wouldn't mind another one.  Check this out!"

Meanwhile, Kiloword Pictures producer Hugh Briss was a little less thrilled about these developments.  "Miss Jones!" he barked at his secretary.  "Where's Stella?  Have you gotten hold of her yet?  She was supposed to be here half an hour ago!"

"I'm sorry, Mr. Briss," the secretary replied.  "Stella was headed for the commissary for dinner."

"What do you mean, 'commissary'?  She just had lunch a few hours ago!  Is that all she can think about?  Tell her to come to my office first."

"She's on her way to your office right now."

"Well, you tell her that she'd better not mess up her photo shoot with Teen Preen magazine.  She already weighs 115 pounds, and those editors are starting to get on my nerves!  The home-video release of 'Teen Utopia' is coming up, and I can't afford bad publicity!"

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