A/N: This is a short story I wrote when I was 11, I believe. However, my English was terrible back then (as English is not my first language). This is the revised version of it :3 I added some stuff and deleted stuff that didn't make sense, and corrected the grammar. :P
Reviews are very much appreciated! (:
Aisha had already decided to leave. The family doctor had recently found out she had a rare and incurable disease. He had given her a week to live, at most.
"There's nothing you can do," he said to my dad and I. "She's not going to survive. She isn't exactly what I'd call 'a fighter'." He closed a button in his pale, ghostly uniform, and left our house.
Besides the doctor's uniform, there was something else that was pale and ghostly there: my mom. The disease had been consuming her inside, eating away at her organs and at the amount of time she had to live. Strangely enough, it didn't eat away at much of her energy; she looked sick, but she was twitching to get out of that hospital bed.
Me and my dad didn't weep or say anything for a long while. I stared at my fingernails, which had grown long, since my mother hadn't been there to remind me to cut them.
Finally, I surrendered and asked the question that had been banging incessantly in my head.
"How are we gonna tell Erin?" I asked.
Dad kept on silently twitching his hands. His face dripped with emotions that were too conflicting and painful for me to grasp. Looking him in the eyes was an impossible task right then. I thought he wasn't going to answer my question at all when he finally did.
"Sophie," he said. "You're a big girl now. You're eleven."
It was very ironical that my eleventh birthday would fall right on that day. Destiny can play cruel tricks on us.
Sometimes I wonder if the reason why Destiny is so bitter is that he lost his mother too.
"But Erin's just a baby," I argued.
Erin was my younger sister, a chubby three-year-old who found comfort in talking as loudly and quickly as she possibly could. She was unlike me, who always yearned for silence. Sometimes the silence listens better to you. When the weeping willows hit the whistling wind, you know that silence is actually listening to you, somewhere out there—wherever it lies. Silence is just… so much more sincere than blabbering or than unspoken words. There is a difference between silence and unspoken words left hanging in mid-air. Right now, we weren't in silence—we were just not speaking.
I carefully opened the door to the adjacent room, where Aisha laid. It creaked.
My mother was crying. When she saw me and my dad, she grabbed my hand and spoke.
"I want you to take me to San Francisco," she begged, her face unrecognizable due to her tears. "My friend's there. My friends are all there. I want to spend my last days there."
It wasn't even worth telling her that her so-called friends didn't even care about her, since they were having fun in San Francisco instead of lying beside her like we were. Not a single one of them had come to visit her upon the discovery of her disease, six months ago. My mother was so much like many girls in my school—always lingering behind the crowd, always the obedient puppy whose motto was "anything to be accepted". It wasn't surprising she would rather spend her last days partying with her acquaintances than with her glum and meaningless pre-teen daughter, her boring husband, and her hyperactive baby daughter.
My father drove us up to San Francisco. Erin slept the whole ride. When we finally reached the small apartment building Aisha was staying in with a friend, she awoke. Her blue eyes flashed as she asked our mother, "Mommy, will you bring me and Sophie and Daddy a gift when you come back?"
For a moment I thought Aisha wouldn't answer. She did, however. She paused, tapping the elevator button, and turned around with the brightest smile in the world splattered in her face. I could see through it, though. I could tell she was faking it.
"Yes, Erin, my dear!" she said in a cheerful tone. The kind of tone that people use when they want to talk without really saying anything. "I'll bring you and Sophie and Daddy lots of beautiful, wonderful gifts, pinky promise. Lots of them!" The elevator arrived, and she winked at us before disappearing behind the metal doors. Her face was still pale, but seemed to exhibit a sort of relief.
Erin turned to me. "Is Mommy okay?" she asked.
My dad and I did nothing besides stare at the metal doors behind which Aisha had disappeared forever, thinking of the unspoken words between us and her. They felt so heavy.
My eyes came into focus. Erin still waited for her answer. Mommy was not okay. But, most importantly, we weren't okay. We were helpless. Hopeless.