Just A Dream...
Family Feud

Chapter One: Invitation To England

"I can't believe we're really all going to England."
Elizabeth Santiago, better known  as 'Copper', percussionist for American band Jewel and daughter of former Hologram Raya Alonso gazed dreamily out of the window of the aeroplane at the slithers of cloud below. "I've always wanted to go. Mama went when she was in the Holograms...she said it was a blast!"
"The only memory I have of England is my grandmother's funeral." Her companion, guitarist Nancy Pelligrini remarked, offering her friend a drole smile. "I was only a kid at the time."
"Nice." Copper grimaced. "I hate funerals."
"Well, they're not there to be liked." Nancy responded. "It was odd, actually. Mom didn't want to go, but she changed her mind at the last minute, and so we went. Mom never got along with her mother...in fact, I don;t think she gets on with any of her family that are still alive, to be honest."
"That's sad." Copper looked thoughtful. "My family have always been really close...I don't know what it'd be like to be so distant."
Nancy, daughter of former Misfit 'Jetta' or to give her her real name, Sheila Pelligrini, smiled slightly.
"Well, Mom's family aren't much like yours." She replied. "I only met my grandfather once - at the funeral - and it was only too clear that things were strained between him and Mom."
"What's this lady like that wrote to Jetta?" Copper enquired.
"Aunt Laura? To be honest my memories of her are vague too." Nancy laughed. "But I think she's okay. She has a bunch of kids of her own, too. She and Mom grew up together, which is why we got the invite, partly. Also, though, I think there's something else going down. Mom didn't tell me what was in Aunt Laura's letter, but she seemed keener than usual to go to England and she barely listened when I asked if us guys could come along too."
"That's sometimes the best way." Copper grinned. "And Jewel are getting a trip to England! I know you and Syl have both been there before, but for Topaz and I it's something totally new!"
Sylvina Martescu and Aurora Stapleton, otherwise Sylva and Topaz made up the remainder of the group, and they, along with Nancy's elder brother Aaron, Copper's boyfriend of some months and their mother, Jetta herself were headed to England for three weeks holiday in the city the Misfit had grown up in.
Laura Milligan, nee Cunningham had been a childhood friend of Jetta's, as Nancy had recounted to Copper, and the two had kept in close contact for many years. Now she had written with some unexpected news...that she'd met a young man by the name of Taylor Conway, who claimed a relationship with Jetta's family. Decidedly cynical of the whole business, Jetta had resolved to travel to England to settle the matter herself, and had not minded taking the group with her, since she knew they were capable of taking care of themselves. In any case, Aaron was there, and Aaron had a protective instinct where the band were concerned, so she had no qualms about them interfering in her business.
"Only about twenty minutes till we land." Sylva leant across the aisle, a grin on her own face. "I can't wait to hit Oxford Street and Harrods!"
"You'll be broke in the first two hours of landing." Topaz looked amused. "It's a good thing your credit cards have limits, Syl, else you'd buy up more than we could ship home!"
"We'd need a whole other plane to send it back." Nancy smirked. Sylva poked out her tongue.
"I like shopping, and I don't get to come to England much." She defended herself. "Anyway, London is the coolest. You'll see."
"Think we'll see Sammi and the others while we're there?" Copper wondered. Sylva scowled. Samantha Phillips was her cousin, and the percussionist for a band based on the other side of the Atlantic from Jewel. Sylva had never had much time for her cousin, for Sammi, as she was known, was both creative and versatile in terms of her music and the eldest Martescu girl had convinced herself long ago that her mother Mary, formerly Stormer of the Misfits liked Sammi better for it.
Sylva herself was not creative in terms of writing music, though she was a clever musician and a good singer. Her mother was important to her, though she fancied herself too sophisticated to let it show much in front of other people, and she was fiercely jealous of Mary's fondness for Sammi.
As it happened, her jealousy was groundless, for Sylvina and her twin sister Anna were Mary's prime concern in life, but Sylva was stubborn and her opinion was not easily changed.
"I hope not." She said now. "That'll really ruin our break, seeing those losers!"
"They're not losers." Copper frowned. "You shouldn't be so unkind about Sammi, Syl. There's nothing to dislike about her. You should be glad she's doing well for herself, like you are."
"Hah." Was all Sylva said, and Topaz, seeing an all too common sulky look cross the synth player's face hastened to change the subject.
"Where is it we're staying again?" She asked.
"Some hotel in Bayswater." Sylva replied. "I forget the name of it. I wonder if we're travelling the underground to get there?"
"Underground what?" Topaz looked blank.
"Railroad." Sylva replied. Then, "Ooh, we gotta strap in now. I can't wait to land!"

As Sylva had suspected, the group were to travel via the London Underground to their hotel. Jetta had shunned the idea of a limousine, for she wanted to attract as little attention to herself and her charges as possible (A fact that none of the group could fully understand, since PR was part of Jetta's job), and she had grown up using the tube network, so it was without batting an eyelid that she ushered the group of teenagers onto the oddly cylindrical looking train that had thundered into the station. It was fairly full, and Copper and Aaron elected to stand, Copper's eyes big as she took in the surroundings. She had travelled on underground rail networks in America, but there was something different about this. Around her people spoke in a variety of languages, and more than one person greeted another in the same accent (at least in Copper's mind) as Jetta spoke with herself.
Aaron cast her a glance.
"You okay?" He asked. "Not jet lagged?"
"I'm fine." Copper turned, smiling at him. "Just excited to be here. I'm glad it's a vacation and not a tour, I want to be able to see as much of England as I can while I'm here."
"I never imagined we'd be on one of these things with the cases." Aaron admitted. "I don't get Mom when she's in England...it was the same last time, as well. Caution. She booked herself into the hotel as Sheila Pelligrini, you know...not as Jetta. She never does that in America."
"Maybe she feels more like herself here?" Copper suggested. Aaron shook his head.
"No...she loves England but she's strange about coming here." He replied. "Sometimes she's hard to work out."
"Well, we got a vacation out of it, so it can't be all bad." Copper dimpled, as the train pulled into Earl's Court station. "I love these stations...they're so cute somehow."
"How can a station be cute?" Aaron demanded, his expression amused.
"I dunno." Copper grinned. "They just are."
At that moment a couple of seats became vacant, and they sat down, finding Topaz pouring over a map of the rail network.
"Jetta said we change at South Kensington for the circle line." She said. "I don't get the colours mind you. I know they're all different lines but I don't know which line is which."
Jetta herself grinned at this.
"We're on the Picadilly line, Topaz." She said dryly. "That's dark blue. An' we're catchin' the circle line train at South Kensington, which is yellow on the map - got it? That's the network most tourists use, so try an' blend in, will ya?"
"We are tourists, Mom." Nancy pointed out.
"No way am I gonna admit to being that." Sylva said decidedly.
"Like noone will notice when you open your mouth." Nancy laughed. Sylva pouted.
"I meant I'm not gonna be chasing round everywhere with a snappy camera trying to take pictures of everything." She returned. "I'm not that crass. And anyway, I'm not a tourist. I have family in England."
"So do I, only my family here actually is English." Nancy reminded her. "And I'm half-English, so if you're not a tourist, Syl, I'm practically a native."
"Sammi was born in England." Sylva protested.
"Cool it, you two." Jetta ordered. "An' grab your cases. This is our stop."
The tube trains, as the group of teenagers soon discovered, did not wait around for stragglers, and there was some reason for Jetta's chivvying them. Before long they stood on the platform of South Kensington station, watching a train rumble out in the  opposite direction, and waiting for their own train.
"How long is it gonna be?" Sylva asked.
"Two or three minutes, probably." Jetta replied. "Stop moanin', Syl."
"I'm just tired." Sylva defended herself. "It's a long flight and I wanna change...these trains are crazy. Why couldn't we just book a car?"
"Because we couldn't." Jetta told her shortly, in a tone not to be messed with. "An' 'ere it is, so shut up an' grab your case, else you'll be left behind and I ain't comin' back for you, whatever your mother 'as to say about it."
"It's busier than the last one!" Topaz exclaimed.
"We'll all be standing this time." Nancy observed. "Great...these trains are so hot, too."
"Sit on your case." Her brother advised her. "So long as there's room to."
"You're gettin' the 'ang of London already, Aaron." Jetta laughed. "Must be in your blood more than I thought, huh?"
"Guess so." Aaron grinned. "Syl, hurry up, will you? Here, lemme take that." He took her case, dumping it down beside him as the synth player boarded the train. "You really are half asleep today, aren't you!"
"Hey there!"
An all too familiar voice accosted them at that moment and Sylva rolled her eyes as she recognised her cousin, with her friend Rosaline Jameson in tow. "What brings you to England?"
"Sammi!" Copper exclaimed. "Rose! I wondered if we'd see you, but not so soon!"
"We've been shopping." Rose indicated her bags. "And we're not done yet." Her eyes twinkled. "Kinda far to come for you guys to shop, isn't it? What's wrong, Sylva emptied all the shops in LA?"
"Oh, you're so funny." Sylva snapped. She had about as much love for Rose as she did for Sammi, since the two girls were friends of long standing and Rose inevitably took Sammi's side in things.
"Not quite." Nancy replied now. "But she's planning on attacking Harrods."
"We're here because we gatecrashed Jetta's trip to see her friend." Copper grinned. "She didn't seem to mind, though."
"We got a free vacation out of it." Nancy admitted.
Rose perched on Copper's case, eying Topaz with interest.
"Who's this?"
"Oh! Rose, Sammi, this is Aurora Stapleton...Topaz." Copper hurried to make the introduction. "You must've heard about our newest member! Topaz, this is Samantha Phillips and Rosaline Jameson - Sammi and Rose. Sammi's Syl's cousin."
"I remember it vaguely." Sammi admitted. "We've just been so busy. Hi, Topaz. It's nice to meet you."
"You too." Topaz offered her a smile. "I've heard a lot about you. I understand you're quite the songwriter."
"Pah." Sylva interrupted before Sammi could respond. "She pretends she can write but don't get your hopes up. Anna's a way better writer than she'll ever be."
Sammi looked hurt at this, and Rose narrowed her eyes.
"Someone's kinda jealous." She observed.
"Me? Jealous of her? Yeah, right." Sylva snorted. "It's obvious to me who got the looks and ability in the family, and it wasn't her!"
"Guess it was Anna, then." Sammi murmured absently, causing her cousin to send her a dark look.
"Rose, are you all right? You look kinda pale." Copper looked concerned. Rose nodded.
"Sure. This is what you get when you live around English weather." She said dryly.
"She's always pale these days." Sammi added.
"I think I got sun withdrawal from missing Los Angeles." Rose dimpled.
Sylva grimaced.
"Oh gimme a break." She retorted.
"If you haven't got anything nice to say, Syl, shut your face." Nancy instructed her. Sylva poked her tongue out at the younger girl.
Jetta caught sight of the grimace and rolled her eyes, making no attempt to interfere. Sylva wasn't her daughter, after all, and this wasn't a professional visit. The last thing she wanted was a public scene.
"We're getting off here." Sammi grabbed Rose's arm at that moment. "We may see you around if you're staying a while - where are you staying?"
"Bayswater." Aaron told her. Rose smiled at him.
"Cool." She observed, her glance assessing Aaron in more detail, though only Sammi of the group knew her well enough to realise it.
Then the train pulled to a halt at High Street Kensington, and, well used to the tubes by now, Sammi pulled Rose out of the doors and across the platform, leaving the caterpillar like contraption to continue its way along the line.
Sylva's mood had been soured further by the encounter with her cousin, and she amused herself for the remainder of the journey in imitating the mechanised voice that announced the train's route as it left each station stop. Fortunately for the group of tired travellers, Bayswater was a mere two stops further on from High Street Kensington, and soon they were outside their designated hotel, which even Sylva could not find fault with.
"If you don't stop doing stupid circle line train impressions I'm going to insert this case in you." Nancy snapped at her as they entered, Jetta heading up to the desk to confirm their booking. Sylva poked her tongue out once more at her bandmate.
"This is a circle line train." She intoned flatly. "Calling at Get-a-Life Gate and High Street Loserville."
"Oh, shut your face." Nancy snapped. "Thank God I'm not sharing a room with you this vacation!"
"God I couldn't bear it." Sylva shuddered.
"Okay, girls, your keys." Jetta rejoined them at that moment. "Copper an' Nancy, this is yours...Sylva an' Topaz, this is yours. Your rooms are next door to each other an', God 'elp us, interconnecting. No pillow fights or food fights or..." Her gaze fell on her daughter and Sylva thoughtfully, "Fist fights. Okay?"
She turned to Aaron. "This one's yours, me boy...an' no sneakin' into the girls' rooms after dark, because I ain't bein' 'eld responsible for any little accidents of nature, you got me?"
This remark left both Aaron and Copper discomfitted and redfaced, and Sylva forgot her grievances for the time being to laugh at them.
"Fourth floor." Nancy glanced at the key her mother had given her. "Room 412. Ok. Copper, you coming?"
"Sure." Copper seemed only too glad to get the attention off her. "Oh! Jetta, what's your room number, in case we need you?"
"I 'ope you won't need me too badly." Jetta said dryly. "But it's 407. Now go and unpack and get outta me 'air, will ya? I got a phone call to make!"
And with one accord,they went.


Chapter One: Invitation To England
Chapter Two: Exploring London
Chapter Three: Taylor
Chapter Four: A Surprise For Nancy
Chapter Five: Jetta Explains
Chapter Six: To Ruislip
Chapter Seven: Romance
Chapter Eight: The Stranger
Chapter Nine: Kidnap!
Chapter Ten: The Aftermath
Chapter Eleven: Bad Blood
Chapter Twelve: An Unlikely Hero
Chapter Thirteen: A Family For Taylor

Copper, Nancy, Sylvie, Anna, Blade, Sirena, Topaz, Aaron, Sophie, Justin, Elliot, Rosita, Luis and any other characters in this fiction which do not appear in the animated Jem series are copyrighted to me (E.A Woolley) as of January 2002 <unless otherwise specified> and are not to be reproduced without permission ANYWHERE. Jetta, Pizzazz, Stormer, Roxy, Raya and all other original Jem characters are the copyright of Hasbro Inc, Sunbow, Christy Marx and the other writers of the Jem series.