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I knew a man, who prowled the library halls every Sunday, at the eve at noon. He schleps along a tank full of air, as if he is dragging his ball and chain. And I can't help but notice from the safety of my corner chair, the way he growls at his daughter, when he has found a book. And she comes, swinging babies in her arms and dangling cigarettes from her mouth, trying to catch up to her father. I peer out over my books as he grasps the soft paperback in his arthritis riddled hands and shoves it towards the girl. She takes it with grudging despair and reluctance, and just when she is about to place it on the counter, in front of the check out lady, he shakes his scruffy, white-clad head and mumbles something about it not being the right one. The girl sighs, wishes the check out lady a happy Sunday, and follows behind, stepping in the shadow of her father. I long to know what their names are, the daughter who is short and stubby and never seems complete without a chuby baby hanging off her meaty arms. The old man who drags his ball and chain through the forest of books, growling like a tiger. And the baby, who screams at the top if her lungs when her mommys cigarette smokes swirls through her nose. This ragtag family entertains me far beyond the confines of my silken pages, and i yearn to know their story more than the fanciful characters draped before me. On the second Sunday of February, he was there right on time, his ball and chain moaning like a ghost as it glided down the carpeted floor. His daughter came in, cigarette lounging in her mouth, baby lounging on her arms. In her hands she clutched a pack of Marlboro, and flicked ashes about the floor. I peered over the hard cover of my book. The old man paced through the fiction section, and his tank purred alongside him. Down through the fantasy books, wrinkled hands massaging the bindings on the edges. He stalks through biographies and fables, letting his hands ripple over their leathery bodies. He grumbles at the daughter when she has fallen too far behind. His hands stopped over an old copy of Tuck Everlasting and his tounge flicked quickly over his cracked lips. "Some books are timeless" he grumbled. I looked out at him, searching the forest of rows to see who he might be talking to. His daughter and her child had long since disappated out the jangling door laden with bells, where they stood swirling in Marlboro smoke as the soft white flurries coated them. The old mans eyes flicked to mine. He repeated what he had said. I nodded slowly. His old, worn out hands picked up the book. It was old, with a brown cover and a faded picture of Tuck with his girlfriend. The two were bent over a pool of water nestled underneath a tree. "If only I hadn't aged." He sighed. The man took rumbling steps over to me, his tank full of life beside him as always. He stopped in front if my chair and stood. "Tuck was my hero, and I always wanted to end up like him. You cherish being young. It's not as fun As being old." His old, blue eyes twinkled merrily in their sunk-in sockets. I nodded as he strode away. He signaled through the window to his daughter to get the car, and she rushed out from under the red and white awning. Five minutes later and he was gone.

He died the next week, on a Sunday at noon. Apparently it was an open casket. Both my parents went, but not because they knew him, but because we all went to the same church. And while they respectfully dressed in black, not a tear was shed for this old man. "He died of old age," they said. But I knew better, though he needed a tank to breath and arthritis laced his fingers, he was young at heart. And that made him everlasting.



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SaphiraBrightscalesThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Nov. 19 at 11:36 am:
Okay so for the first five minutes after reading this I was like: " HANG ON! Why haven't I read this one of Liv's before?!" Seriously. That. Was. Breath. Taking. Awesome. Such. A. Wonderful.Story. To. Tell. Liv. YOUR. Words. Are. Beautiful.    P.s. I love your diction too. "lounging, swinging, dangling, hanging, wow! "  And hey, You really should have told me to read this before!
 
SaphiraBrightscalesThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Nov. 19 at 11:38 am :
And adding to my comment, Congratulations on the Editor's choice pal! :D :D :D YAY YAY YAY!
 
Laugh-it-OutThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 20 at 6:29 pm :
DUA! Haha thanks! Did you hear?! IM BEING PUBLISHED IN THE MAGAZINE!!!! I will soon reply to your other comments cuz I have been taking a while.....school :/ Anwho, so good to hear from you and to know that you still enjoy reading my work!!! <3        ~Liv
 
SaphiraBrightscalesThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Nov. 21 at 11:14 am :
HEY!! I didn't get an email yet. Why the heck not? Anyway,, TELL ME WHICH???? WOW CONGRATULATIONS!! I am skipping in joy :D  And Duh! Of course. I shall always enjoy reading your work. Liv. Sometimes you do say preposterous things. :P Where are you??
 
Laugh-it-OutThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 21 at 10:40 pm :
Where am I? Well im in New York of course. "The Greatest City In the World" (it really isnt all that but whatevs!) Thanks! 
 
SaphiraBrightscalesThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Nov. 23 at 3:47 am :
But you didn't tell me which article is getting published?! I want to go read and and re-read if I already have read it. :D Tell me!
 
Laugh-it-OutThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
today at 10:51 pm :
Oh right sorry! Winters Song. Thats the one thats getting published
 
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KindleThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Oct. 23 at 4:33 pm:
I wish I could write like you; this is amazing - simply breathtaking!
 
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RainyMoodThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Oct. 21 at 1:09 am:
5/5 I LOVED THIS! It struck a personal note for me because I find myself writing alot about being young. But this was lyrical. Your discriptions are amazing. You have a gift of writing. I added to favorites....
 
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Hanban12This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Sep. 16 at 8:37 pm:
This is a brilliant story worthy of multiple applause. Well done; this is a very captivating, intriguing piece. The ending was the most memorable part for me. "He was young at heart. And that made him everlasting." Wonderful. Write more, my grasshopper! ;) Fame is forseeable in your future
 
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RayynbowThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Sep. 15 at 10:38 pm:
Oh my! I wasn't expecting the man to end up talking to the main character! I was just enjoying the description of the man and his family and all of a sudden BAM the guy is talking to the main character and that's when it gets more serious. I really like this piece because of that. I don't really think that the last part about the funeral was necessary; it didn't add anything to the story for me. It would have been fine to end with "Five mintues later and he was gone."
 
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PlumeThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Aug. 20 at 6:16 am:
wow !!!!! this story really touched me ! i love every single thing about it, my favourite part was the last sentence "And that made him everlasting", i thought it was a woderful idea to compare him to his favourite hero ! well done !!! :)
 
PlumeThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Aug. 20 at 6:18 am :
i meant wonderful
 
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Z.Monika said...
Aug. 14 at 2:31 am:
Okay. The story here is very good. Very. The “Tuck Everlating” references and the themes you pretzelled from it, don’t sound wierd. They fit in. Which is very delighful to notice. What I don’t like, however, is the little typos that show in your work. They disturb the readers and you should be aware of it. For example, “And the baby, who screams at the top if her lungs”
Should be,
“And the baby, who screams at the top of he... (more »)
 
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thatunknownthingThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Jul. 6 at 5:05 am:
What a FANTASTIC work, with such a great narration! The last line is impossibly cool and the lines "cigarette lounging...baby lounging in her arms", " ball and chian moaning like a ghost", "rag-tag family....silken pages" and a zillion others I could point out, are extremely original and breath-taking. You deserve the editor's choice! Keep writing!!
 
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MckayThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jun. 28 at 4:26 pm:
BOOM! Wow, this is incredible. I can't believe I might say this...but I might love it more than A Tragic Story, not that the latter story wasn't good. I dunno but this just struck the few rusty chords of my usually non-existent heart, as one of my brothers says. First, to get away from this critique. There were a few typos, but hey it sure didn't dissuade the editors of this fabulous website and magazine from awarding you with a highly coveted Editors' Chioce. CONGRATULATIONS!! S... (more »)
 
Laugh-it-OutThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jun. 28 at 9:17 pm :
Haha thanks for bribing! ;) just kidding! This may sound totally cocky and overly confident and a little braggy, but when writing this i was like, i know that this is going to win an editors choice, and look what happened! Does that ever happen to you? It seems that my luck checks in right at the points of my despair that the editors don't like my work! Anyway. Thanks again and thanks for saving some nice little red checks for me :) if i keep writing fiction, since it seems to be my calling, may... (more »)
 
MckayThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jul. 23 at 5:23 pm :
Sometimes, I do have a feeling something might receive an Editors' Chioce. But I've been wrong sometimes. Sometimes good wrong. And sometimes bad wrong. And of course we can share them. Just as long as we keep getting them. 
 
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LexusMarieThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Jun. 25 at 10:50 pm:
Guess who? :) Oh, Liv, this is fantastic! Really! Bravo to you! It was really original and I never felt bored with the story. I could picture it all in my head. It reminded me of an old town with an old library that people took advantage of having. The feel to it was very interesting. I liked the old man's personality, very typical for how people like to describe almost every old person, but there was something to the man that made it different! And I really enjoyed the change in the man as ... (more »)
 
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dbk1098This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Jun. 25 at 5:28 pm:
This is amazing!!! I love the idea!!!
 
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