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Tag Archives: safety

Fiction: Opening Doors (504 words)

“We’re not allowed in here,” the nine-year-old boy said quietly at the doorway, not bothering to hide the fear in his voice. The five-year-old girl heard that fear and hid from Linea behind the boy’s shoulder, still not letting go of the boy’s hand. “We can’t afford to be kicked out,” the boy continued, “We don’t have anywhere else to go.”

“Your sister is too scared to sleep downstairs,” Linea pointed out, “You guys have been here for three nights and she hasn’t shut her eyes once.  It’s my room, and I am allowed to do say who is and isn’t allowed to be in here.” She gave a small stomp of her foot with the determination that only a well-protected nine-year-old had.

The boy still looked hesitant to come into the room, and Linea crossed her arms over her chest and rolled her eyes. “If you want to be stubborn for your own sake, that’s fine, but that girl needs to sleep. Are you really going to let your pride prevent her from sleeping?”

That was the final blow. There was nothing that he wouldn’t do for his sister, and Linea had already figured that much out. Not that it was hard to figure that much out from him. He wasn’t shy about his love for her.

“Thank you,” he said, almost meekly. He stepped in and had to give the girl a gentle tug on the arm to get her to follow him across the threshold. “Come on, Nia. She’s letting us use her room so we can be alone. Isn’t that nice?”

The little girl gave the smallest of nods.

He looked up at Linea with a genuine smile.  “Nia, what do we say when people do nice things for us?”

Nia stepped out from behind her brother and let out the quickest and quietest “Thank you” Linea had ever heard before disappearing back behind her brother. He rolled his eyes good-naturedly at Linea like can you believe her?

“Nia, you can have my bed if you like,” Linea offered, “I know you’ve had a rough couple of days. I can stay with my mom in her room so you two can get some sleep, and that way my mom will know for sure that I let you two in here myself, and there won’t be any question of making you leave the house for being in here.”

She started to head out of the room, but the boy came forward and took Linea’s hand carefully. “Thank you. Truly,” He repeated earnestly.

“Of course. I’ll see you in the morning.”  Linea dropped his hand and shut the door behind her. It was only as she was walking towards her mother’s room that she realized that she knew the little girl was named Nia, but she had no idea what the boy’s name was. She would have to find that out tomorrow. Because she had a feeling that tonight would not be the last time that she was interacting with those two.

 
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Posted by on October 17, 2017 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Home Safe (654 words)

Bryna braided her hair simply, so that the braid hung straight along her spine.  She tucked the braid down the back of her shirt, and wrapped her mother’s dark shawl over the rest of her head.  With a quick glance into the small looking glass, Bryna assured that each curl was tucked safely away under the shawl.  Even one red strand would be a dead giveaway, because Bryna Anne was the only one in town hair quite that bright.

She pulled up the hem of her skirt, securing it carefully under the tight spot of the half britches she wore underneath the skirt.  It was a tried and true method that was passed from older girls to younger girls, often giggling together in the back of the town parties.  It was a way to keep hems up and out of the mud, and free your feet for whatever sneaking about you were planning to do.

Bryna tip-toed carefully around Patch, the little brown mutt that she had saved from the mud a couple years ago, and slipped into the hall.  She pressed herself against the wall just outside her bed room door, leaning forward ever so slightly to check down the little alcove that led to her mother’s room. Her door was latched tight, and the light was on, which meant her mom was definitely in there. She counted to three, taking a deep breath before pushing off the wall.  Six steps across the living room, then she was out the front door and sprinting down the main path.  As she approached the hill that marked the town limits, she saw a little brown haired girl pop out from behind a tree. “Bryna Anne! I thought you weren’t going to show.”

“Hush! You don’t need to be shouting my name for the whole world to here.”  Bryna draped her arm around her best friend’s shoulders, and pulled her back into the dark cover of the trees. “And of course, I was going to show.  Honestly, Liza, do you really think that I would miss this?”

“No. Not really,” Liza smiled a great gapped tooth grin. Liza and Bryna weaved carefully through the forest to their usual spot.  They climbed up the tree to the thick branch that they could sit on side by side. From there, they could watch easily.

It was late, so the army didn’t march in formation. The where in their own territory and there wasn’t anyone around to impress, so they marched in quiet jagged lines, people swapping places seemingly at random, heads close to their neighbors as they whispered and joke. Even in the low light, their uniforms seemed to give off a glow, that blue aura that Bryna gaped at as a child.  She’d always liked it better when the Army was in town, but now—

“I see him!” Liza whispered, grabbing Bryna’s arm with one hand and pointing with her other. “It’s Kiley! I see him!”

Bryna followed her finger carefully, and there he was—red hair long and disheveled. The first thing that was going to happen in the morning was their mother was going to tut and set him down in the chair in front of the file place and go at him with a pair of scissors. He would complain the whole time that none of the other soldiers had their mother’s cut their hair, but Bryna knew he loved the attention.

“He’s safe,” Bryna laughed to herself, relief washing over her, “I’m so glad that he’s safe.”

Bryna and Liza watched them march until the stopped to make camp out of town. They would march in tomorrow, all proper uniforms and neat ranks. Bryna and her mother would be at the front lines to greet their brother and son coming home, for now anyway. But Bryna could rest easy tonight, knowing that her brother was safe and sound just outside the town boarders.

 
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Posted by on January 11, 2017 in Bryna's Stories

 

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Fiction: Strange Safety (185 words)

The only fear that it took me a while to understand was the fear of hospitals.  Eventually, I logically understood that people fear the loss and the bad news that can come from hospitals, or the tragic circumstances that put people in the hospital. 

But I never really understood it.  Hospitals for me have always been a place of safety.   A place where people who knew a lot more than me were in charge.  Where I didn’t have to worry about every little action making my loved ones worse.  The doctors and the nurses took care of the making people better, and even when we got bad news, I still knew that I had done everything I could by getting to a hospital.  I’d never have to wonder if the bad news could have been avoided through an action on my part. 

So, even when I was the one in the bed, waiting for the test results, I felt a sense of calm.  They’d take care of me here, and I wouldn’t have to worry about the ‘what ifs’ if I hadn’t come. 

 
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Posted by on April 19, 2016 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Safety (99 words)

I didn’t want to leave them behind, you understand.  They had been my friends for as long as I can remember.  And the truth of the matter is that if I felt any security what so ever, I would have stayed and fought for them and with them.

But someone was trying to kill me, and someone was trying to kill my son.  I had to do what I thought was right.  I had to do what I thought would keep my baby safe.

And I don’t feel guilty about that.  Not at all.

 
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Posted by on February 10, 2016 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Safety (377 words)

“I’m jumpy? Are you jumpy? How are you not jumpy?” Brian paced back and forth across the living room.

Thomas leaned back on the couch, tucking another pillow up under his head. He tossed a little hacky sack up in the air and caught it again.   He wasn’t jumpy, but he knew the way Brian felt.  “Brian, you’re going to make yourself sick if you keep that up.”

“I can’t sit still, Thom. I can’t. I keep thinking that something bad is going to happen.  Someone is going to burst through those doors and do bad things to us or something.  I mean, don’t you feel it, Thomas. Nothing is safe here, we’re never safe.”

“I’m not saying drop your guard, Bri. I’m smarter than to suggest that to you.  But, I think, right now, we are safe.  We’re the first boys at Girlaldi in a generation, on our first day here, classes haven’t even started.  The whole world’s eyes are on us now. They would be stupid to make a move on us right now, like this.  So, no, we shouldn’t drop our guard completely because that is a sure-fire way to get ourselves attacked, but we can relax some. At  least enough that you can sit down, so I don’t feel like you’re making me seasick.”

“It would be stupid for them to attack us tonight, wouldn’t it?”  Brian sank down into one of the armchairs.  “Everyone is watching.  A good point well made, Thomas.”

“Thanks, Bri. I try.”

“I just feel them out there. Waiting. They want to strike and they want to strike fast.”

“They will always want to get us, Brian. You, and Ciara, and I are a persistent thorn in their side and they won’t want to rest until they put us to bed for good.  But, we need to find the time to relax where we can. Keep breathing and whatnot. Take the moments we can to breath, or else we will go mad. Understand?”

“I suppose.” Brian sighed and covered his face with his hands.  “I’m just not used to not having to look over my shoulder all of the time.”

Thomas cut a glance to the dark windows and felt his heartbeat pick up a step. “You’re telling me.”

 
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Posted by on May 27, 2015 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Good Moments (307 words)

It is this moment right here, and the moments like it, that she lives for.  When she’s sitting in the crowded living room and laughing so hard that she’s pretty sure she’s going to start crying.  Her best friends in the world are here and every once in a while they go off on a tangent of their own and the people who haven’t known them as long raise an eyebrow good-naturedly as there are jokes that really aren’t that funny, but they keep laughing like it’s the funniest thing they’ve ever heard.  And when she looks up and away from her chair to the man sitting on the edge of the couch, his laugh melts into a smile, a soft and warm smile that he never gives to anyone else.  And he loves her and she loves him, and it’s something that she was sure that she was never going to have, and although she doesn’t want this fun night with her friends, her second family, to end, she knows it will be okay when it does because she will crawl into bed next to him, and he will wrap his arms around her and kiss her head and wish her only sweet dreams, and she will fall asleep curled up next to him she will be happy and dream sweetly.  A joke pulls her back into the moment and she breaks eye contact with him, knowing she’s blushing but hoping that her laughter will cover it.  Someone makes a joke that is mostly at her expense, but she just rolls her eyes and sticks out her tongue and diverts the joke to someone else, and they all roll with it.  It’s the moment like this that she lives for, and she thanks god every day that she gets to have as many as she does.

 
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Posted by on May 13, 2015 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Return to Old Times (303 words)

They hadn’t talked in about five weeks.

Clark’s fiancée had left him to reunite with her ex—and they’d had a whirlwind romance and marriage before heading off on the honeymoon that was originally planned for her and Clark. He understandably need some time after that.

As for Marjorie—well, her life was never not complicated.  She didn’t always make the best choices in life, and in these weeks even she had a bit of a spike in the absurdity department, so she didn’t have a lot of time for people who weren’t directly related to anything going on.

They reunited at his old place—well, just his place again.  The apartment he shared with his brother.  The last time she had been there was the day the engagement had been broken off, when she’d held him while he cried and fell asleep on his mattress, both of them unsure what else they could do.

It took some time, when she first got there, while they hovered near each other, not sure what to do with themselves or how to treat the other.

“I missed you,” Clark finally sighed, “I haven’t seen you in ages and I really missed you.”

“I missed you too,” Marjorie answered, “I just thought that—you know—with everything…”

“Yeah,” Clark nodded a bit more vigorously than was necessary, “I get it.”

And like breaking glass, the awkwardness shattered.  It could have been any random day in their semi complicated lives.  Marjorie sank into the couch and started flipping through channels on the TV like she owned the place.  Clark disappeared into the kitchen and reemerged with beers for them both just in time to complain about the Rom-Com she’d switched the channel to.   She insisted he could change the channel if he could get the remote from her, and everything was like before.

 
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Posted by on January 23, 2015 in Stories

 

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