A Last Visit of Innocence

October 7, 2007
By Hannah Hicks, Seminole, TX

I know it’s a dream because there’s fog seeping through the cracks in the doorway. Lying in bed I notice a faint crackling noise. I sit up, and beside me, there I am. Well, the little girl version of me, but me all the same. The white-blonde haired little girl is looking at me with deep blue eyes. She looks so fragile, yet ageless.

“Hello Lyn,” she whimpers.

“Hello, who are you?” I say, throwing myself into the dream.

“Your innocence,” she says in her small troubled tone.

“Innocence…,” I rasp. How long was ago did I lose my innocence? I mean it’s not something you notice leave. It just slowly falls away, and at eighteen I’ve been at least five or six years without it, maybe even longer.

Scenes drift through my mind:

My father holding a suitcase walking out the door never to return.

My first boyfriend making out with the cheerleading captain at my Sweet Sixteen.

Geniver’s funeral.

Mom bringing home her thirty-seventh boyfriend.

Mark blacking my eye one night when he came home drunk.

Some of these trivial things, some major, but all had a central theme. They gradually stole my wide-eyed innocence.

I blink to refocus. The crackling noise has become more insistent, and the room is almost uncomfortably hot. My innocence stands in her white gown gazing distantly at the door. She looks scared and weary.

“Come on, hop in,” I tell her holding up the covers. She crawls in and clings to me.

“Why are you here?” I ask on a whim.

Still staring vacantly at the door she says something, but her tiny voice is lost in the crackle now filling the room. Repeating her answer, her voice rises, increasing in volume until she is screaming to overcome the noise, and I hear, “I’ve come to help you die.”

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