Two more days left after today. Then this challenge will be over and I can figure out what one I’m doing next. So soon… And yet right now it feels like forever. This feels like a really long month, but at the same time it seems to have flown by. Anyway, here’s the next portion of the story. I had to cut it a bit shorter than the last two due to time constraints (ie, my boyfriend needs the computer, and I have other things to do that may or may not take all day).
“Are you hungry?” he asked her, holding out a loaf of bread he had taken from inside a box on the table.
She held out her hands, and he gave it to her, watching as she took tiny pieces and nibbled them, almost as though she was uncomfortable eating it this way. He wondered if she was of higher standing then, with how she sat with her back so straight and how she had straightened out her shirts on her lap so that the bread could sit there when she was eating the pieces of it, rather than biting into the loaf itself.
“Can you tell me more about why you ran away from home?”
He handed her a cup of water and watched her sip it between bites of bread, waiting for her to answer him.
“My sister,” she said as she placed the empty cup on the bed next to her, “She’s so busy she never has time for me. She stopped playing with me, she thinks she’s grown up now and she’s too old to play with children.”
“How old is your sister?”
“She’s twelve. My friend is eighteen. He always played with me before, but he doesn’t now. I don’t know why, he just doesn’t like me anymore, I guess.”
Julian knew there were plenty of reasons an eighteen year old boy might stop spending time with a young girl, but he chose not to speak. She was too young to hear any of those things.
“He still tucks me in at night, and he’s around a lot, but he’s so busy all the time. He spends so much time with my sister now, and it’s like I just don’t exist anymore. I’m invisible, aren’t I?”
Her eyes wide, she stared at him waiting for an answer.
“No, little one, you are not invisible. I can see you perfectly clearly right now.”
“But then why don’t they see me anymore? Did I do something wrong? Did I anger them?”
“Love, I highly doubt you did anything wrong. Maybe it’s not as bad as you think it is?”
“But it is!” She pounded her little bawled up fists into the mattress on either side of her.
He approached her and crouched down to eye level, taking her hands gently in his own and holding them.