Penny Takes A Pause

Chapter 16

Thursday 7th November 

11:17am – Lying in the Castle of Kennedy Resort

Just turned my phone on after 48 hours of unmobile bliss.
23 messages. 31 emails. 17 Snapchats. 29 Facebook notifications. 2 Voicemails.

I may move to Mars.

11:22am – Still Lying in the Castle of Kennedy

via Text Message
Roxie: ‘Penny? Are you alive?’

Via Text Message
Charlie: ‘Penny? Has the study finally done you in? Or was it the deep fryer?’

via Text Message
Fletch: ‘Kind of concerned I haven’t heard from you since the exam… was it Porter’s Five Forces that tipped you over the edge? Or the 329 pistachios you ate beforehand?’

via Facebook Messenger
Goldie: ‘Hey Penny, I got a really weird phone call from The President. He said he can’t find you and wanted to know where you were. Should I know where you are? Have the cats in the roof finally eaten you?’

via Text Message
Myles: ‘Penny P, just wanted to check if you got my email about preseason singlets? Or are you still down there on your knees?’

via Facebook Messenger
Charlie: ‘Penny seems to have disappeared… Have you spoken to her?’
Dorian: ‘Perhaps she has taken our overseas trip without us!’
Charlie: ‘Seven weeks before planned? I don’t think so…’
Dorian: ‘She may have marched off to fight the Huns. We won’t be able to find her because she will be disguised as a man’
Charlie: ‘Equally as unlikely’
Dorian: ‘Perhaps she went for a ride to a Whole New World on her magic carpet, but she had a thread fault and had to wait for RACFC (that’s RAC Flying Carpets in case you didn’t pick up on it) to come and fix it? They tend to be fairly unreliable at the best of times.’
Charlie: ‘Not entirely plausible’
Dorian: ‘Maybe she’s been captured by an evil witch for the magical powers of her hair and been locked away in a tall tower. And the only way we’ll find her is to climb up her long ladder of hair and rescue her’
Charlie: ‘Considering her hair is barely past her earlobes, I’m not sure she’s that magical’
Dorian: ‘Perhaps an evil person in power wanted her dead so she ran away to the forest to live with a bunch of dirty men and run around after them cooking and cleaning and singing and being a Mother Hen, until a Prince goes to rescue her?’
Penny: ‘Although that sounds remotely like her current choice of employment, I’m not sure that’s right either. Dorian, I don’t think I can let you continue unless you can come up with a completely plausible non-Disney related suggestion’
Dorian: ‘Oh well. I’m out of ideas then’

via Text Message
JB Schitz: ‘No pool date today? Still hiding from Mr Vanilla?’

via Facebook Messenger
Mitch: ‘Thought there would have been at least one video of you celebrating spring racing carnival on Youtube by now. After all, riding is what you do best…’

via Facebook Messenger
Roxie: ‘I’m not sure where Penny has gone or who she has gone with…’
Snicks: ‘Difficult to say really… ‘
Roxie: ‘Perhaps she has cracked and is whimpering under her desk?’
Snicks: ‘She might have thrown her phone at The President’
Roxie: ‘But she hasn’t been on Facebook or Email either’
Snicks: ‘Perhaps she threw the computer at him as well?’
Roxie: ‘Implausible for most people, completely understandable for Penny’

via Text Message
Fletch: ‘PS – I used duct tape as an example in my exam. You’re like the voice inside my head Penny, willing me to stick shit together with duct tape’

via Text Message
Mother Dearest: ‘Hello darling, just wanted to check if you’re having fun with Kennedy. He does seem like a lovely boy’

via Text Message
Mother Dearest: ‘Penny…?’

via Text Message 

via Voice Mail
Father Bear: ‘Penny, it’s your Father. Can you give us a ring please. Your Mother is hysterical and thinks you’ve been kidnapped. She also used cornflour instead of caster sugar in the cake she made tonight and I nearly gagged. Call us before her hysterical baking puts one of us in hospital’

via Text Message
Flossie: ‘I just don’t know that I have the intellectual capacity for Bitstrips’

via Text Message
Flossie: ‘Also, came home and found the home phone in the fridge and the milk in the cupboard. Suspect Mum may be losing her marbles.’

via Voice Mail
Bob: ‘Hey Penny. Guess what? I took at three catches and a wicket at cricket tonight. Miss you. Love you. *pause* Oh yeh, can you ring Mum? I got to school today and I had a tin of tuna and a piece of bread for lunch. And the tin of tuna was empty’

11:57am – Still lying in the Castle of the Kennedy Resort

Kennedy *walks in the room*: ‘I heard a buzzing sound, is there a bee in here’
Penny *exhales*: ‘No, that was just the sound of technology roaring back into my life’
Kennedy *laughing*: ‘What’s the damage? Has the world imploded without you?’
Penny: ‘23 messages. 31 emails. 17 Snapchats. 29 Facebook notifications. 2 Voicemails. I’m more important than Obama.’
Kennedy: ‘Correct me if I’m wrong, but it’s only been 48 hours…’
Penny: ‘Don’t worry, only five of them have escalated to frantic panic and checking if I am alive. The rest of them just think I’ve finally gone bananas’
Kennedy: ‘I wonder what my mates think…’
Penny: ‘You haven’t had your phone on either, have you?’
Kennedy *smiling*: ‘No, I have had much better things to do’
Penny *giggling*: ‘Where did you put yours?’
Kennedy *walking out of the room*: ‘I threw it on the roof. And I plan on leaving it there.’

12:14pm – Still lying in the Castle of the Kennedy Resort 

Kennedy: ‘Did you manage to calm the masses and call off the manhunt?’
Penny: ‘I hope so, I sent a blanket text message to everyone which I think should abate their terror, at least for a little while. And then I promptly turned my phone back off.’
Kennedy: ‘And what exactly did you tell them?’

12:14pm – Still lying in the Castle of the Kennedy Resort

via Text Message
Penny: ‘My People. Do not be afraid. Just because you cannot see me, it does not mean I have abandoned you. I am merely on a mini-break. Be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age’

12:14pm- Still lying in the Castle of the Kennedy Resort 

Kennedy *raises eyebrows*: ‘Sounds… kind of dramatic. Did you write that yourself?’
Penny: ‘God no. I stole it from Jesus.’
Kennedy *chuckling*: ‘Well then Jesus, shall we go fishing and catch some fish to feed the 500?’
Penny: ‘I thought you’d never ask!’

Friday 8th November

11:04am – Banana Lounging at the Kennedy Resort

via Text Message
Charlie: ‘How’s the mini-break going?’
Penny: ‘It’s divine. Sun, sea, sand, and more sea’
Charlie: ‘I can imagine you’ve seen a whole lot of that… *ahem* and Flossie tells me a certain gentleman as well?’
Penny: ‘Actually I have, we’ve even been out on the water. Kennedy took me fishing’
Charlie: ‘Ooo how was fishing?!’
Penny: ‘Wet’
Charlie: ‘Well of course it was wet, you were out in the ocean.’
Penny: ‘Quite literally’
Charlie: ‘Overshare, I don’t need to know how wet you got’
Penny: ‘Oh I was wet up the waist’
Charlie: ‘Oh God, Penny! That is really too much information’
Charlie: ‘Wait. How do you get wet up to the waist?’
Penny: ‘You fall in’
Charlie: ‘Oh God’
Penny: ‘Yes. That’s what I said’

1:49pm – Still Banana Lounging at the Kennedy Resort 

via Facebook Messenger
Penny: ‘My friends seem to know where I am… and who I am with…’
Flossie: ‘Well after you started sending messages sounding like you were Jesus, they thought you were hallucinating and rang me. So I’ve been keeping them updated with the highlights.’
Penny: ‘Some people have no appreciation for my sense of theatre’
Flossie: ‘You are an imbecile, now have you been swimming yet?’
Penny: ‘I’ve been in the water’
Flossie: ‘Was it nice?’
Penny: ‘As nice as it could be when you’re fully clothed’
Flossie: ‘Really Penny? Surely you could loosen up and just wear some bathers, you can’t do everything fully clothed you know! What did you do? Turn a romantic afternoon swim into a pseudo lifeguard training session? Didn’t you learn your lesson after Mr Vanilla?’
Penny: ‘We were actually fishing, not swimming’
Flossie: ‘Right… well if you were fishing, why were you in the water then?’
Penny: ‘I fell in’
Flossie: ‘*chuckles* What a catch you are!’
Penny: ‘Ah, Punny Flossie, very punny’

1:56pm – Still Banana Lounging at the Kennedy Resort

via Facebook Messenger
Roxie: ‘So, let me get this straight, you’re on a romantic mid-week pre-birthday mini-break with Kennedy at his family’s resort?’
Penny: ‘Yes. It is the ultimate in hyphenated experiences’
Snicks: ‘This all sounds rather, excellent. You didn’t tell us dinner last week went THAT well’
Penny: ‘I didn’t realise dinner last week went THAT well. I can only attribute this to the fact that I must have absolutely impeccable table manners. Thank God the twenty odd years my mother spent refining them in hope of a royal engagement have not been entirely wasted’
Roxie: ‘It would seem that you have put your best fork forward’
Snicks: ‘And you must also be really good at spooning as well I suspect’
Penny: ‘This conversation is rating very highly on the list of my greatest ever culinary experiences’
Roxie: ‘Well of course it would. Though perhaps not as highly as being forked by Kennedy…’

Saturday 9th November

7:44pm – Watching the sunset, Sorrento Back Beach

via Text Message
Roxie: ‘So Rex Hunt, catch any fish today?’
Penny: ‘Decided to stay on land today’
Roxie: ‘I can imagine a bunch of romantic things you could do on land, any highlights?’
Penny: ‘This one…

What Penny Did Next Penny Takes a Pause

Roxie: ‘Beautiful. You deserve it Penny, enjoy *grins*’

8:02pm – Still watching the sunset, Sorrento Back Beach

via Text Message
Roxie: ‘Oh I forgot to mention…

What Penny Did Next Penny Takes a Pause

‘This is important to keep in mind next time Kennedy takes you out fishing. Right after that other age old piece of fishing wisdom… “stay in the boat”’
Penny: ‘Hilarious. I’ll let Kennedy know – kissing girls is safer than kissing fish. Life Lesson #498 mastered’

Sunday 10th November 

10:03am – Lying in the Castle of the Kennedy Resort

Kennedy: ‘Penny Pinkerton, you are unlike any other girl I have ever met’
Penny: ‘You mean to tell me that the other girls you take fishing don’t actually jump in to catch the fish?’
Kennedy *laughing*: ‘No I can’t say any of them have done that…’
Penny: ‘In my defence, I was laboring under the misapprehension that I was in fact Jesus and could actually walk on water…’
Kennedy *smiling*: ‘You’re clever, you make me laugh, I like listening to you, you’re good with words, you have a God complex…’
Penny: ‘Oh bloody hell. I’ve turned into Kanye West’
Kennedy *chuckling*: ‘Hey, I ain’t saying she’s a Gold Digger’
Penny: ‘I like you too Kennedy. Thank you for this, it’s been…
Kennedy: ‘Impressive? Memorable? Extraordinary’
Penny: ‘Yes. It has’ *pauses* ‘You were talking about the breakfasts, right?’ *giggling* 

6:21pm – Driving Home from the Mini-Break

via Facebook Messenger
JJ: ‘Think I just made a dating faux pas’
Penny: ‘Burnt the granola again?’
JJ: ‘Not exactly, I thought I may have found you a man, but being the good friend that I am, I was trying to do thorough research before I dobbed you in’
Penny: ‘I always do appreciate thorough research, go on…’
JJ: ‘Well I was talking to my fella’
Penny: ‘Was this whilst making granola? Burning granola? Or eating granola?’
JJ: ‘No granola was present at this time. We were just talking about New Years and he mentioned one of his mates was coming down, and he might be a good match for you’
Penny: ‘As long as he’s tall, dark and handsome I’m willing to be persuaded’
JJ: ‘That’s exactly what I said!’
Penny: ‘I see no faux pas here…’
JJ: ‘Well, that’s not EXACTLY what I said… I think it went more along the lines of “As long as he’s tall, dark, handsome and hung like a horse”’
Penny: ‘I still see no faux pas here’
JJ: ‘Well, then I was promptly informed that he does actually have all of those traits… Have you ever seen the barrel of an antique Flintlock gun?’

Penny: ‘Good God. I think perhaps in future you may need to reassess your livestock comparisons’
JJ: ‘I think so…’

6:34pm – Still driving home from the Mini-Break 

Kennedy: ‘Is that a gun you’re googling?’
Penny *blushing*: ‘Hmm, one of my mates is an antique collector, she was just showing me what she was looking at buying…’
Kennedy: ‘What kind of specs does it have?’
Penny: ‘Uh, it’s a .60 calibre with a 9 inch barrel’
Kennedy *whistles*: ‘Decent size…’
Penny: ‘Hmm, yes, that’s what I said…’

9:49pm – Lying in the Castle of Penny

via Facebook Messenger
Fletch: ‘Hey Miss Moneypenny, are you alive? Or are you still saving the masses with your healing buns?’
Penny: ‘Alive and well sir, how goes the essay writing?’
Fletch: ‘Almost done, just this one we have due on Thursday and I am finished’
Penny: ‘Finished for the year, or finished for good? I thought you had another year?’
Fletch: ‘Finished for good – unless I decide to do further study but at the moment I can barely bring myself to do the study I’m already not paying thousands of dollars in HECS fees to complete’
Penny: ‘My my, uni finished, spring racing carnival over, what will you do with all of that spare time?’
Fletch: ‘Oh I’ve got a few plans. A few trips here and there, might head OS, might sell my fortune for a camel and run away to the outback, might begin my duct tape manufacturing business. Who knows really?’
Penny: ‘The future looks bright Fletch. Bright and ductile’

Monday 11th November 

7:59am – Zipping along in the Beep Beep Barina

via Text Message
Penny: ‘Just went to the 7/11 in ugg boots and trackies. In broad daylight’
Chloe-Lee: ‘Ah ugg boots and trackies. The official uniform of Reservoir’

9:33am – Sitting in the Office of Hell and Neglected Paperwork 

via Facebook Messenger
Charlie: ‘So, back to the land of the living now Penny?’
Penny: ‘Sadly yes’
Charlie: ‘Look on the bright side, at least my call about your future as an astrologer was on the money. Should you ever decide to seek alternative employment…’
Penny: ‘This is true’
Dorian: ‘I’d like to point out that my suggestion that she had been whisked away by a Prince wasn’t all that far off the mark either’
Penny: ‘I thought your call was more along the lines of me running away to a forest to clean for a bunch of dwarves and then be saved by a Prince’
Dorian: ‘Well it was along the same line of thought…’
Charlie: ‘And where exactly does Penny pretending she is now Jesus come into this?’
Dorian: ‘Oh alright alright, so I got the wrong historical narrative. Next time I’ll go more Bible and less Disney!’

10:09am – Still Sitting in the Office of Hell and Neglected Paperwork 

via Facebook Messenger
Roxie: ‘So I had the most ridiculous dream last night. I was at a trophy presentation for footy but the function was in my home town up bush, after it finished Snicks and Beardy came back to my place because I said we could have a sausage sizzle. Once I was home I took all my clothes off and started swinging on the swing near my window. I had just gone to organize the sausage sizzle, when I woke up. What does this mean?!’
Snicks: ‘You like cooking naked?’
Penny: ‘You like sausages when naked?’
Snicks: ‘You have a subconscious desire to be a swinger’
Penny: ‘I’ve got it! You want to swing naked with Beardy, and you love him so much you are going to get a trophy made to commemorate his sausage’
Roxie: ‘Oh God’
Snicks: ‘So much sausage’

6:49pm – Kitchen, Chez du Pinkerton Mad

Bob: ‘Hey Penny, I really like this girl in my class, what should I do?’
Penny: ‘A. Don’t tell Mum. She’ll have you measured for a suit before the weekend’
Bob *rolls eyes*: ‘Yeh, but like how do I tell her I like her?’
Penny: ‘Well, you guys are friends aren’t you? Have you said anything yet?’
Bob: ‘Not really… but I did jump off the playground for her!’
Penny *confused look*: ‘What to show off?’
Bob: ‘Nah, she was in sick bay and I thought she might like someone to sit with her’
Penny *laughing*: ‘So you jumped off the playground to rush off and see her? You know you could have just exited the playground safely and gone and seen her?’
Bob *shakes head*: ‘No no, you can’t go to sick bay unless you have a reason or you’re injured’
Penny *raises eyebrows*: ‘So you injured yourself for her? So you could go and sit with her’
Bob *shrugs*: ‘Yeh, I really like her’
Penny: ‘Oh God, you’re like Casanova with a Jesus complex. I love you my people, I must injure myself to show you how!’

Tuesday 12th November 

7:47am – Lying in the Castle of Penny

Pinkerton Family Mad *singing*: ‘Happy Birthday to Youuuuuu, Happy Birthday to Youuuuu, Happy Birthday Dear Pennny, Happy Birthday to Youuuuu’
Father Bear: ‘Hip Hip!’
Mother Dearest: ‘Hoooorraaay!’
Flossie: ‘And now! Boooggggie on down!’
Bob and Flossie *bounce around the room like Miley Cyrus*
Bob *shaking*: ‘And twerk it, and twerk it, and twerk it’
Flossie: ‘BOOBSLAM TIME! Incoming!!!!!’
Penny: ‘Oh God’
Mother Dearest: ‘Happy Birthday darling, aren’t you glad you woke up?’
Penny *muffled under Flossie*: ‘Mhhhmm mhaks Mhum’
Mother Dearest: ‘I love you too. Now your father’s made craps for breakfast. Come and blow out the candles so you can kiss the nearest boy’
Penny: ‘The French language never stood a chance in this house’
Flossie *smiling*: ‘We all love a good crap now Penny, c’mon, up you get!’
Penny: ‘I swear the correlation between ageing and maturity is a myth’

8:32am – Standing in the Lands of Penny 

via Text Message 
Kennedy: ‘Happy Birthday Cupcake xo’

What Penny Did Next Penny Takes a Pause Birthday Cupcake

4:22pm – Sitting in the Office of Hell and Left Over Birthday Cake 

via Text Message
Penny: ‘An envelope just arrived at work, two tickets to Madama Butterfly for next week.’
Charlie: ‘He’s taking you to the Opera… to see YOUR opera!’
Penny: ‘I know, I’m speechless!’
Charlie: ‘Kennedy sounds perfect, mini-break, smart, family own a resort, and now he sends you tickets to your opera!’
Penny: ‘He is perfect, but he didn’t send me the tickets’
Charlie: ‘What?! Who did?!’
Penny: ‘Fletch…’
Charlie: ‘Oh God. In the words of the terribly wordy Thomas Hardy – out of the frying pan, and into the fire!’

7:34pm – Birthday Dinner with the Pinkerton Family Mad, Hellenic Republic

Mother Dearest: ‘Did you like your presents Penny?’
Penny: ‘Yes thanks Mum, I did. I’ve been very spoilt’
Flossie: ‘She especially liked the sexy underwear I bought her’
Penny *raises eyebrow*: ‘Oh was that underwear? I thought it was dental floss…’
Mother Dearest: ‘You know I read an article today girls which says it is good not to wear your underwear all of the time, sometimes you just need to let things breathe’
Penny *raises eyebrows*: ‘Uh…’
Flossie: ‘Oh yes, I don’t like to sleep with any underwear on, I prefer to let the breeze flow around my butt cheeks’
Penny *chuckling*
Flossie *grimacing*: ‘Oh but then I put my wheatbag between my legs and things get burnt’
Penny *crying with laughter*
Father Bear *mouth gaping*
Mother Dearest: ‘Now Flossie, do you really think that’s a wise idea?’
Flossie: ‘But I just like sleeping with something between my legs!’
Mother Dearest *mouth gaping*
Penny *rolling on the floor hysterical*
Flossie: ‘No no, not like that, I just don’t like my legs touching, so I usually just stuff my gorilla down there’
Penny *crying with laughter* 
Bob *looking confused*: ‘You put a gorilla where?!’

11:01pm – Lying in the Castle of Penny

via Facebook Messenger
Mitch: ‘Sending birthday love to the best set of pins I know’
Penny: ‘Thank you Mitch, you are, as always, incredibly charming’
Mitch: ‘Have you had a good day?’
Penny: ‘Well I’ve received 11 presents, had 234 Facebook notifications, had three birthday cakes, been sung to four times, received 29 messages and 4 phone calls. Oh and I also nearly choked at dinner because apparently Flossie likes to sleep with a gorilla between her legs. So all in all, yes. It’s been a good day’
Mitch: ‘A gorilla between her legs!? I think I’ve been chasing the wrong sister…’

Wednesday 13th November 

7:02am – At the waterhole of communal diseases and men in old lycra

JB Schitz: ‘I could have sworn that guy that just floated past smelled of mothballs. Over the smell of the chlorine!’
Penny: ‘Ah mothballs. The signature fragrance of Thomastown’

11:03am – Sitting in the Office of Hell 

via Text Message 
Flossie: ‘It seems Mum’s gardening is really taking off. She is developing her own unique style’
Penny: ‘How so?’
Flossie: ‘She’s alternating… a pot of flowers, a pot of weeds…

What Penny Did Next Penny Takes a Pause Weeding

Penny: ‘Oh God, next thing we know she’ll be auditioning for The Block’

2:54pm – Lying under the Desk in the Office of Hell and Caterwauling Cats

Myles: ‘Penny? Penny? Are you in here?’
Penny: ‘I’m here’
Myles *bending down*: ‘Hiding under the desk again Penny?
Penny: ‘I prefer to think of it as acclimatizing in my natural habitat’
Myles: ‘Your natural habitat is lying flat on your back? Fair call’ *chuckling*
Penny *rolls eyes*
Myles: ‘You’ve really got to find a new hiding place, you don’t know what has been under your desk…’
Penny *raises eyebrows*: ‘Sadly I do, and perhaps you’re right’
Myles: ‘Why don’t you hide in the cupboard?’
Penny: ‘The mice live in there’
Myles: ‘What about in the social rooms?’
Penny: ‘The old people are out there, usually smoking inside and cutting each other’s hair whilst gambling their grandchildren’s inheritance away playing cards’
Myles *raises eyebrows*: ‘What about the boardroom?
Penny: ‘The cats peed on the carpet in there’
Myles *eyes widening*: ‘I think I might just lie down here with you’
Penny *smiling*: ‘I knew you’d come down eventually’
Myles *winking*: ‘Something always does go down when you’re around Penny’

10:23pm – Lying in the Castle of Penny

via Text Message 
Fletch: ‘Happy belated Birthday! Sorry I didn’t message sooner, I was stuck in an exam and then a meeting yesterday, and then back to essay hell today’
Penny: ‘Why thank you good sir. And I believe I should say thank you for the present as well. That was beyond generous, you didn’t have to’
Fletch: ‘But I wanted to. It’s not every day you find a girl who knows her way around a roll of duct tape AND who likes Puccini’
Penny: ‘This is true. Now I just have to find someone else who likes him to come along with me’
Fletch: ‘Oh, didn’t I tell you? The tickets come with a inbuilt Fletch. I’ll be on your doorstep at 6:00pm next Wednesday night to escort you personally.
Penny: ‘Wow…’
Fletch: ‘Oh and you probably should warn your Mother…’


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