Author's Notes: This was actually created for an English essay. O_O scary, isn't it? It's non-anime, to boot! hahaha I hope you enjoy! Editor, Kathy, says: I wanna say hi to all my fans! .me: what fans? *glare* .*silence* my point exactly.

"Summer Days"

It was sweltering hot in the summer of 1931, and there wasn't much you could do about it in our little Californian town. I was born and raised in that town as Lucy Smith, but was more commonly known as "Red", because of my crimson red hair (my pride and joy!). All the people in my town "loved" me, saying that I was "beautiful" and things like that, but even now I wonder what they really saw in me. They always told me of my childhood escapades, telling me about how I grew up from a pretty little girl, to a stunning young woman. The townspeople may have thought I was beautiful, but there was just one person whom I thought was the most gorgeous person ever: My best friend Sara Livingston.

Her sun-gilded hair, and her sparkling blue eyes entranced many hearts, and my heart was one of them. Her beauty was captivating, but it was her sweet, sorrowful soul that had drawn me to her. Sara was a year younger than I am, but her intelligence and wisdom surpassed mine. Despite the fact that I was approximately one year and three months older than she was, she would inevitably end up having to teach me one thing or another, and that lead to good days, frustrations, and lots of laughs. Though, not all days were like that. There were days when her joyful, clear blue eyes became prey to the darkness of her soul, turning those bright eyes into stormy orbs of confusion, and those were the days that made me cry for her.

Mr. Livingston lost himself to a world of darkness and despair when his beloved wife died, leaving him and Sara alone. In his world, his eyes saw only Eleanor, Mrs. Livingston, and the happy memories he once shared with her. Poor Sara received no warmth or love that a daughter deserved from her father, and instead only received blank stares from her father's haunted eyes. Because of this, she forced herself to grow up, to rid herself of the joys of childhood, to become a woman. I met Sara when I was a child, maybe a few years after her mother died, when I was with my mother at the churchyard grave. We had been visiting my long-deceased uncle, just like we had always done every year on his birthday, but never before had I seen someone as beautiful, as sorrowful, as Sara Livingston was that day.

She was sitting before a tombstone that day, one that bared the engraving of "Eleanor Livingston: Beloved wife and mother". As I watched her, cold droplets of water began to shower my skin, and I saw for the first time that the sky had grown stormy, much like Sara's eyes appeared. I glanced from the sad young girl, to the even sadder grey sky, and it felt like the skies were crying for this little girl who had lost a mother. I felt my heart grow heavy at the thought of being alone, and so I decided to remedy Sara's loneliness; I decided to be her friend. I remember how startled she looked, her eyes telling me everything; they were full of surprise, fear and happiness. I kneeled down next to her, my hand on hers, asking only one thing:

"Will you be my friend?"

Sara was so touched, that from then on, we never left each other's side. Day by day, she slowly regained her childhood, and remembered how to enjoy herself. I was proud of her, glad that she was recovering, and my mother was proud of me for bringing Sara back to her lost childhood. I asked her one day why she was proud, but my mother just shook her head and smiled at me. Though, it's a shame I can't ask her now, since I'm all grown up now. It was an amazing thing to have Sara Livingston as a friend, but as we grew older and eventually married, our friendship seemed to be disappearing faster than warmth on a freezing winter day.

Of course, we never completely lost touch, seeing as our homes were nearby and our darling husbands worked for the same company. Life was tough, since our great country of America had just suffered through a bloody, grueling battle. Jobs started to become more and more difficult to come across, and soon people were out at the banks, desperately trying to withdraw their money. I began to worry for our financial welfare as well, finally deciding to march down to the bank and take out our life savings, which, in reality, wasn't quite much. When I arrived at our bank, I was greeted with the sight of a great mass of panicking people clamoring to re- attain their money. Through the crowd, I saw a golden head of hair that could only belong to my best friend, Sara Livingston.

I fought my way through the crowd to talk to her, shoving through elbows and bodies like there was no tomorrow. I was panting for air when I finally reached her, and the look in her dim, turbulent ice blue eyes sent a cold shiver down my spine. My body gave a twitch backwards, wanting to escape Sara's impassive stare. It was the same look she had carried back then at the graveyard, back then when she was focused and allowing her no enjoyment.

I placed a hand on her arm, asking, "Sara.Are you alright?"

She only stared at me, her look softening ever so briefly, before motioning me over to follow her. I gave her a small nod, knowing not of where she was leading, and worrying every step of the way. It took me a few moments before realizing that we were heading back towards our neighborhood. I would have asked her to come into my home, but we just walked on by, the sun relentlessly beating down its rays upon us. We entered Sara's home, breathless and sweating, and took a seat in the parlor room. I had been here before, each visit a pleasure for the heart, each departure bittersweet. Now that I looked upon this room once more, I realized how much was missing, apparently sold for whatever money could be obtained.

"Why are we here?"

My question rung out clearly in the lonely, somber house, and she only stared at me with muted blue eyes. From her purse, she fished out a crumpled, tear stained note, obvious marks of her first (or last) reading. I snuck a peek at the official looking paper, and my breath caught as I saw that it was from my dear Michael's company. Sara stared at the paper for awhile, her eyes showing not the slightest emotion.

"We are sorry to announce, but Mr. Joseph Whit has been terminated from our company for reasons that we cannot control. Please accept our dearest apologies for your loss, but there is nothing we can do. Once more, our deepest apologies," she read aloud, her once-sunny voice trembling with every word, "This was sent out to every worker at the company, Red."

I gazed into her troubled eyes, not fully comprehending the situation. So her husband lost his job, that I understood, but what did that have to do with me? I suddenly realized it as I thought back to her words; "This was sent out to every worker at the company." They echoed in my mind, twisting and turning into a voice of great misery. My eyes widened, my first thought "Impossible!" Michael was a wonderful worker, valued for his strength and his wits! There was no possible way.

The silence enclosed me, and the world spun. The bank was closed, my husband had been fired, and poverty seemed to be grabbing at us with his long, spindly fingers. The life that I had lived hadn't always been wealthy, but it had been enough to sustain us. I instinctively placed a hand on my growing belly; what about our child? Tears filled my eyes, and cascaded down my cheeks. Outside, it began to rain, the sky crying with me. I remember warm arms encircling me, comforting me.