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A Girl and Her Cloud
“ESCALATOR!!” a little Dora loving (and resembling) three year old screams. Laasya has a small nose, round face, and squishy body, but when something gets in the way of what she wants, this little fluff ball turns into a whirlwind of destruction.
“ESCALATOR!!” she screams again as if it is her battle cry. In the few seconds that it takes her to get to the escalator she turns into a football player, a snow plow, something that pushes other things really, really hard, other things being the poor people in the way of her moving staircase to all the good things in life. Laasya is a powerful enemy. She jumps off of everything and falls every five seconds. She is the opposite of fragile. She is a beast.
People are pushed out of the way, others just dive to the floor, wanting to get out of her path of terror. I love that about her. She knows what she wants and goes out and gets it, from trivial matters like if someone took her crayon to more important things like if someone took her food, in which she would go ballistic and more than one person would be in the hospital. No matter what is in her way she’ll obliterate it . Trust me. Did that jerk Tommy just take her marker? Prepare to suffer Tommy. Is she stuck in a timeout? She is off to the playground the next time the teacher blinks. Is there is tree in her way? She is gonna try to move that tree, get really tired, and then run around it, maybe walk because trying to uproot a tree takes energy.
As Laasya’s foot touched the first stair, her whole body relaxed(this sounds dramatic, but not for Laasya, the three year old as dramatic as a soap opera star). Not to brag but I’m basically the reason she loves escalators so much. Lala thinks that I’m the one that makes them “float”, since I am a cloud, given to her by the owl from Winnie the Pooh. What’s his name. Oh, Owl. I float, so I can make things float. It is common sense.
Lala turns to look up at me and I have a clear view of the boogers in her nose. For a little kid she is pretty mature about the whole picking her nose thing. She’ll do it if she has too, and only for hard boogers, no slimy ones. See, I know these things because I’m her imaginary friend. I know everything, such as her fears like the creepy yellow eyed wolf from the back cover of Little Red Riding Hood and pumpkins. I know the things that make her happy like ranch dressing and wood floors. I also know things that I just know from being around her like she going to be short because of her tiny family, and her immigrant parents will give her a drive found in no other.
The end of the escalator ride results in a plea for another go,and a desperate dash off. People run away from her, which is understandable. Battle and ruthlessness enter her eyes.
“No, Laasya,” I say hurriedly, stopping this disaster by gliding in front of her. Scientifically, as a cloud I am made of water vapor(I think) but Laasyaily, I am made out of cotton balls and tissues.
“We have to wait for Vyshakka.” I say. At the mention of Vyshakka, Laasya becomes alert and excited. Laasya sees her older cousin as perfection. Even their grandma confuses pictures of young Vyshnakka with pictures of Laasya. They look creepily alike, but their personalities aren’t as identical as their appearances. Vyshakka will rarely resort to screaming, whereas Laasya explodes into a screaming fit for fun.
“Ready to get pizza!!” Vyshakka asks excitedly, as she steps off the escalator. Laasya squirms around in that little kid way when they are so happy that they don’t know how to form words. Laasya loves words. Saying, reading, writing, or listening to them.
“Let’s go get that pizza.” Vyshakka declares and points regally like a general from the Civil War. Laasya is her tiny sergeant, fidgeting to seek out the secret weapon and devour it. Laasya would probably devour a weapon. She doesn’t care that it isn’t edible. Her definition of edible is anything that will fit in her mouth and won’t move if she bites it. Actually, scratch the moving part. Just, anything that will fit in her mouth.
The two dash off. Vyshakka is of the age where she is still considered a little girl but she just radiates smartness, giving her an older complexion. That is the opposite of Laasya. She will laugh over the dumbest things and will never shut up. She’s just going to be an overgrown baby her whole life.
“Sorry!” Laasya screams (she will never stop screaming until the day where she physically can not anymore and the whole world will breathe a sigh of relief) as she runs into the knees of a passerby, whose face contorts into one of absolute pain. I never see this look on her face. Her fat protects her from anything remotely dangerous.
The two cohorts race down the mall, past people who wonder, “why does that little girl make me feel incredibly nervous.” When they realise where they’ve seen Laasya before and start to ask themselves how much damage can her slightly older doppelganger do, they proceed to jump into a nearby fountain and try to swim away from the demon child.
“Can we have a large, thin crust half cheese half vegetable pizza,” asks Vyshakka to the stunned cashier as she runs into the restaurant. Vyshakka and Laasya are all about grand entrances. The occasion doesn’t matter. They just need everyone else to know that they are here and ready to dominate.
“AND A LARGE SPRITE!” screams Laasya at the cashier who breaks out into a sweat during the act of remembering the demon child, as Laasya clumsily collides into the back of Vyshakka, causing them both to lose their breath and Laasya to vomit in her mouth.
“Sure, and who will be paying?” asks the cashier hopefully. She hopes they don’t have money so they can leave and terrorize the rest of the mall.
“Me.” Vyshakka says defiantly and heroically slaps $20 onto the counter.
“Boom! Take that!!” says my sassy little one. She waddles backwards, trying to let her amazingness sink into the cashier’s mind.
“I’m so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so-so excited Mr. Cloud!!” Laasya exclaims. I’m surprised that is what she said to me. I’m so used to her being impatient, and this long line to get something that she loves almost as much as escalators, soda, would definitely challenge her patience, or usually lack thereof.
“I’m surprised that you are being so patient today.” I say looking down at her.
“Well I don’t always have to go beserk.” Laasya says. Her vocabulary is accredited to her current reading project, Sherlock Holmes. Pretty good for a kid who should be reading picture books. I hear an excited push and a sudden rush of soda steaming out of the nozzle. Laasya finally got to her elixir of life, the bane of her existence, a cold, gigantic Sprite.
The next thing I hear is a rush of soda, but not from the fountain. I also hear a clatter of ice, the clunk of a plastic cup hit the ground and the muffled whimper of a dejected little girl. I looked down to see Laasya, drenched in the coveted Sprite she awaited. The whole store is staring at her and I know that this is one of the rare times she is feeling embarrassed. She is doing a good job of not crying but tears clutter her eyes, threatening to spill out.
“Lala.” I say. She is beginning to sniffle now. “It’s ok. If we let the small things that make us sad get us down, we’ll be all the way down here.” I float down down so close to the floor I can see the little pieces of dust and dirt. “We want to be up here,” I say and float all the way up to the ceiling. I know Laasya is the only one who can see me, and she is the only one who matters. I can hear her psychotic little girl giggle from up here.
“Come down Mr.Cloud!!” Laasya screams. The cashier is cleaning up the spill with such annoyance it is almost palpable. This right here is why I love being Laasya’s imaginary friend so much. She dropped the thing she waited the whole day for, got the air knocked out of her and faced the ultimate embarrassment, yet she still found time to laugh. That is the beauty of little kids. They fall, they cry, they get embarrassed, but they shake it off. And with Laasya, I know this is how she will stay. Forever.