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A Promise In The Rain

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Her little fingers tangle with mine.
“It’s so small,” I think to myself
Her hand in mine—like a ladybug on the window.
She giggles and I try to smile back
But the rain keeps beating down.
I’ve got her tiny body in my lap—
She’s the candle I’ve kept dry
While the water settled for me instead.
“Big Brother, you’re cold!” She blurts out
Her hand touches my soaked cheeks.
Impulsively, I hug her closer
“It’s okay, Big Brother’s stronger than that,”
I grin widely, pointing to the smoky clouds.
Satisfied, she clasps onto my chest to sleep.
I wish that my words were true.
But it can’t be helped.
Gently, I move farther into the alley
“Big Brother,” she says to me sleepily
“What is it, princess?” I tease her.
“I want to go home,” she says.
Tears roll down her face and I’m scared.
They’re diamonds and pearls to me.
“Shh...don’t cry,” I try to cheer her up.
What can I say to her?
It wouldn’t be fair to lie, I decide.
“We don’t have one.” And I sigh.
My eyes stray to my broken leg—useless.
I’m just the same. I can’t do anything for her.
I think of all the promises I’ve made to her:
To give her the best dolls from around the world,
To start a huge company and become rich,
To talk to our deceased parents again.
All lies that haunt my dreams.
And this time, I make a real one.
A real promise.
“But someday, we will.” I hold her to my heart.
And then, the rain stops.



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