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An Angel Without Wings
Once, there was a small girl born without parents. Since she can remember, the girl has been living in the streets. She has no name.
The girl calls herself Nicole.
Now, Nicole has always been an imaginative child. She made up stories to entertain herself in her cardboard house in the streets. She imagines that the food that she got from the garbage can is something that those people in fancy suits eat. She imagines that the cardboard she sleeps in is actually a bed. That she has loving parents waiting for her. That she has a name. That she is loved.
For a child that grew up in the streets, Nicole is quite smart. She sneaks into the school grounds and watches and listens by the classroom windows. That's how she learned many things. Once, she was caught, and she was thrown a lot of things by the students. They called her names. Most of them, she didn't understand. But by the tone of their voices, she assumed it was something bad. But that didn't stop her from coming again.
You might wonder how she survived all those years living in the streets. There were a lot of scraps in the trash cans. As for the clothing, she found this clothes in the dump a long time ago. They're small for her now, but its all she's got. She sleeps in card boards located at a dark ally between two buildings. Often, it gets very cold, but the girl is used to it.
You should be wondering where this story is leading to. We'll get to that soon. But first let me introduce myself. Where are my manners? They have many names for me, but I like to call myself "The Observer". Because that's my only job : to observe.
This girl's story caught my attention a long time ago. If you permit me, I'll tell you more. I'll tell you her beginning.
Nicole's parents have never been in love. I often wonder how the girl came to be. They were sworn enemies, and both were very poor. Once the girl was born, she was thrown away.
An old lady found the girl. She was cared for. For many months, the baby was happy and healthy. But the old lady suddenly felt ill. In a few weeks time, she died. Nobody wanted the girl. I am seriously wondering why they didn't put her in an orphanage. Once again,the girl was thrown away.
Since then, many people adopted the girl, but in the end they always get sick of her. She was always given away. Its not that there's a problem with the child. I believe the problem is with the adults.
The last family that adopted the girl was the worst. They spanked her and hit her all the time. As a result, the girl ran away. She was only five at that time.
Since then, the girl has been living in the streets all by herself. Its been years since she last slept in a decent bed, or ate a decent meal. The saddest part is that her little brain has already forgotten about the kind old lady that once treated her like her own child.
Now, on with the story.
The change in her life came with the snow.
Most children love the snow. They build snowmen, and sometimes they play with snowballs. Children also find the sight of the snow fascinating. But not Nicole.
For Nicole, it meant getting wet and frozen to death. It meant freezing under a card board without even a blanket. It meant seeing those kids play while she's all alone, starving. It meant loneliness.
To put the cherry on top of her miserable life, there was nothing edible in the trash can. Looks like she'll be going to sleep with an empty stomach tonight.
Nicole went "home" and tried to sleep. It was freezing. But she could do nothing about it.
After a dew moments, her head started aching. It was like a hundred hammers were mistaking her head for a nail. When she opened her eyes, everything was spinning.
Then, there was nothing.
The next time Nicole opened her eyes, she was surprised to find herself in a bed. There was also a window, where the light and warmth comes in. There were flowers beside the bed.
If this is a dream, Nicole's sure that she never wants to wake up again, back to her card board and pavement bed.
The door slowly opened. Nicole's little heart was overflowing with fear. She was afraid that she'll finally wake up, or worse, that the person will kick her out of this lovely room.
It turns out that a gentle-looking woman was the one who was opening the door. She was smiling, and instantly all of Nicole's fears disappeared. She has never been smiled at before.
The woman was very kind. Her name was Elmira, and she treated Nicole very kindly. She gave her food, and she taught her how to read and write. She was given dolls and toys to play with. Nicole was so happy.
Elmira is a widow. Once, she also had a family. But her husband and her two children died when their house burned three years ago. Elmira was the only one who survived.
Elmira was in state of shock the months that followed. She barely ate or spoke.
Slowly, she returned back to life. But, she never permitted herself to smile again.
Elmira saw Nicole in the streets, unconscious. She was having a high fever. If it was just any of those street children, Elmira wouldn't have cared. But Nicole looked exactly like one of her deceased daughters, Annie. If she was alive, they would have been the same age.
The girl slept for two days. When she woke up, Elmira took care of her. She made her eat a lot and drink medicine too. In a few days, she was healthy again. If she ever was healthy, that is.
Elmira decided to keep Nicole since she has nowhere to go. Nicole was overjoyed. She never had a parent before, and the thought of having one and going to school was just too much for a child who grew up in the streets.
Years has passed. Nicole grew up to be a fine young lady. She went to school, and she did all the things that a child should do. In those years, she was happy.
Nicole loved Elmira more than anyone else in the world, and vice versa. At that time, they were the most contented people in the world.
Of course, this would not last.
This time, the change in Nicole's life came in the form of fire.
Nicole was on her way home from school. She was enjoying the walk. There were big trees that protects her from the sun, and the flowers on the sidewalk were so colorful and beautiful. She took her time.
When she realized what was happening, it was already too late.
There was a big smoke in the direction of her house. It was like a nightmare slowly seeping into a lovely dream. Nicole already knew what was happening at that moment, but none of what she was would accept it. It was like being pushed into the edge of insanity.
When Nicole reached her house, she saw the sight that haunted her dreams and nightmares alike every night and every waking moment. Her house was burning.
Firemen were already there, and also all of their neighbors were helping put out the fire. Nicole was running towards her house, like all people would have done if they have someone they love trapped inside. Someone stopped her form hurting herself any further. It was one of the most pathetic and heartbreaking things I have ever seen. But I was as helpless as she was. I couldn't do anything.
The fire was caused by an oil lamp. All of the house was burned, including Elmira.
Nicole is one of the bravest persons I have ever seen. She never cried in front of other people. She studied and worked at the same time. She never asked for other people's help. She was so strong.
But at night, she becomes the girl living in the streets again. She has no family. She still has no name, no identity. No one loves her anymore.
In those nights, she cries herself to sleep.
Elmira becomes sad when she sees Nicole like that. Sometimes, I want to tell Nicole that, but that was forbidden. I can only observe.
Elmira has always been an angel. The only difference is that now, she has wings.
And one day, they will meet again. And Nicole will have wings too.