And so, I did a reboot of my old work from my old account [Icy Angel Mei-Chan], which has the same title. I redid the story mostly from the boy's POV, added a load of details, and changed the setting [it was Japanese-esque before; now it's more...Western], but the core plot remains the same.
Yellow roses, in the language of flowers, meant friendship.
Ah, how fresh the scent of spring was! It reminded little Vincent of laughter and playing and adventure, and of grass and flowers and soil and birds and butterflies and bees, and of his elder sisters and their hair and their father and his smile and their mother…their mother's favorite yellow garden roses.
"Pretty," Vincent mumbled every now and then, his eyes darting from corner to corner, taking in the beauty of the blooms, absorbing every shape and size and color, but these eyes would often end up focusing themselves on yellow garden roses, his mother's favorite – not so bright, tinged with a little red on the edges of the petals, tall and growing in clusters, so delicate.
"Pretty, pretty," he giggled once more, reaching out to the roses, uncaring about the world, unaware of the thorns.
In moments, just before his hand could touch any plant fiber, he was torn away, whisked into someone's arms. He struggled to get free, but his family's voices soon reached and soothed him. He looked around him: six pretty faces with six bright smiles greeted him. He looked at his captor: aged eyes with grey hair and wrinkled skin and a small smile. He looked at the roses: healthy and green and soft yellow yet so thorny. Vincent pouted and buried his head against his father's shoulder.
"You'll get hurt," the man spoke as he brought his children back to the house, "I don't want that to happen."
A chorus of yes came from the girls, but their brother said nothing.
An hour passed by, and soon, their house was empty, save for Vincent and the eldest sister. Their father had to work, and the other sisters had gone to school ahead. Some sisters gave Vincent a funny yet sad look. The boy could only wonder why.
The eldest sister assisted Vincent in getting ready for kindergarten and packed his bag up. Vincent, adjusting his blue and white uniform to prevent creases, took his bag, then his sister's hand to signal that he was ready to go. Together, they stepped out of the house, took a good look at the yellow roses in their garden, and went on their way to the kindergarten.
The boy skipped and danced about, his eyes fixed on the road. He tightened his grip on his sister's hand; his sister never reacting, no change in her focused-looking face at all. He recited his mantra – "Pretty, pretty, pretty!" – as he watched his feet move and the laces of his shoes sway about. The girl said nothing.
Finally arriving at the kindergarten, Vincent let go of his sister's hand and waved. The girl finally opened her mouth, but before she spoke, she prevented her brother from entering the school. She opened her brother's hand and pushed a few bills and coins into it.
"For mother," she took a deep breath, "Don't forget."
Vincent looked at the money for a while, and then stuffed it in a pocket. He nodded and waved again, then they parted ways.
Vincent barely noticed the activity around the class, not even the fun activities, or the new pupil. He was very focused on the money – counting and counting, memorizing colors and shapes and figures, ignoring the world outside this. Several times he felt like someone was staring at him, but when he would look, everyone would be minding their own businesses. Even the teacher didn't come near to scold him. All too focused on the money, he became uneasy, for fear of losing it.
A few hours passed by and it was time to go home. The boy fixed up his things and ran out the school. The officials won't mind; everyone knows the family of nine minus one, and several parents and their children go his way too. He would be safe, even at lunch time, when there are many people on the streets.
Lunch time – Vincent would normally go straight home, get changed, and heat up food in the microwave oven, but today was different. He fixed the creases on his uniform, adjusted his shoelaces and his backpack, and pulled up his socks. With a deep breath, he took a different road, and walked up to a store brimming with flowers.
He entered and door chimes sounded. Several faces turned to the door; others ignored it. The staff welcomed the boy; the customers either smiled or did nothing. Vincent smiled back, looked around, and walked up to a saleslady.
"Yellow roses," he said and pointed to a bunch of yellow garden roses, "For my Mama."
The lady nodded, and disappeared among the crowd. Meanwhile, the child went to the back of the long line, and patiently waited for his turn. Mama would definitely be pleased; Vincent is such a good boy, helping his sisters and his father. Vincent won't be directly seeing her, though; the last time he did, she was smiling, her face very calm, her eyes closed, the daylight pouring in, the smell of spring lingering in the room. But he knew that Mama will be proud. He knew it in his heart.
Suddenly, he remembered something - you can't have those roses without thorns if you don't have money. Yes, he should present the money. He looked at his hands - nothing. He searched his pockets - nothing. He opened his bag - nothing. Where was the money?
Maybe bullies took it. But he didn't even talk to anyone at kindergarten today. Maybe some prankster took it. But no one interacted with him today. Maybe he lost it along the way. But someone would surely call out to him that he dropped it. Maybe, maybe, maybe.
He was nearing the register, and he could already see his precious yellow roses. Pretty, yes, but there was no money to exchange for it. His sisters would be sad if there were no yellow roses. His father would be angry if there were no yellow roses. Mama would be very disappointed if there were no yellow roses.
At last, no money, but he was already at the front of the line. He looked up sadly at the cashier, who didn't look really nice. She didn't look at him, as she was punching buttons on the register. A hand held out, and she asked for some amount.
"B-but, I don't have any," Vincent croaked out, ready to cry, "I'm sorry..."
The cashier didn't even look, but she withdrew her hand. The boy prepared himself for the consequences, kept his tears back, readied to apologize again – and the woman started talking of store policies.
Her tone wasn't exactly friendly, nor was the impression she left on Vincent. She started to complain of things the boy couldn't understand. He heard some people trying to talk to the woman, but she didn't seem to hear them at all.
"If there's nothing you'll do here, leave."
The words were sharp, the tone as well, and so was the impact. Vincent checked his hands, pockets, and bag once more, and with teary eyes, started to slowly leave.
His pace was really slow, as if never wanting to leave the place. He sadly looked at the pretty, pretty yellow roses that was supposedly for Mama, and gulped. He'll sure be welcome by six sad sisters, an angry father, and a very disappointed Mama—
"Heeeeey! Ya here!"
Vincent looked up and saw a girl in pigtails, waving at him with a closed hand.
"I'm the new pupil, 'member?"
The voice was really jolly, very much the opposite of his feelings. He gulped again and opened his mouth to speak, but the girl beat him to it.
"You left this. It's important, right? Right?"
She opened her hand and revealed money – money, the same numbers and colors and figures and shapes, the same bills and coins Vincent held earlier. Maybe she was the thief, but she seemed too friendly to be one…but Vincent was too overjoyed to think about it.
"Wait, wait!" he called out to the cashier, and handed the money.
This time, the woman looked, and saw two bright eyes. She merely nodded, grabbed the money, and pressed more buttons on the register. She pushed the receipt and the flowers onto the boy's hands, and the children thanked her. The two then went out of the shop.
Many questions ran in Vincent's mind that he got confused with which to ask first. For the moment, he settled for, "Why did you do that?"
"What?" was the reply.
"You had my money," he accused.
"It's on ya table," explained the girl, "Ye're gone when I was ta gibbet to ye. I hafta ask. I find'ya."
"Oh..." the boy was relieved, "I thought you stole it."
"I can'ta do zat!" she complained, "It'sa bad afta all!"
They laughed; his mind and chest now relaxed.
"What's your name?" he asked.
"Shirley. Weren'tya lis'ning ta class?" she scratched her head, "'Nyway...how 'bout ya?"
"Vincent Paul Chesterfield! Cool name, right?" he giggled, to which the girl only smiled. Vincent looked at his yellow roses, and spoke again, "Pretty."
"Yeah! They'ya pretty!"
"All za flowahs ah pretty, ya know."
"But these are pretty pretty."
Vincent smiled widely, and he fixed his clothes and bag once more.
"I'll be going. See you tomorrow!"
With that, Vincent made his way back to the house, his grip on the roses very tight. He ran, very excited to see his sisters' smiles and hear his father's praise and feel his mother's pride. Spring air met his face – chilly, but it wasn't as harsh as winter; instead, spring air was very fresh, very much fresh, just like the yellow garden roses in their yard, just like the yellow garden roses on Vincent's hand, just like the bonds recently formed.