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The Silver Lining
Chapter One:The Mouse and The Raven
“Those who are blessed shall dance and sing,” continued Katie, a cute mouse-like girl who was more keep-to-herself than Molly was. She tucked her shiny, soft brown hair behind her ear. It came back out and covered half of her face gingerly.
Molly watched her like a hawk, her usual serious gaze piercing through her skin and into her very soul, seeing her very flaws and beauties. She did that to everyone, but no matter how many times someone saw this look, they’d still shudder. It was very frightening, especially traumatic to the gentle little Katie, who immediately glanced and shifted away from Molly.
“No matter how many times you’ve sinned, the great Lord shall forgive you. He will love and elapse you into his ever-lasting happiness, you simply have to love and fear him. You have to pray and believe and be faithful, and he will be especially forgiving to you.” she concluded, her report on the love of God ending suddenly and clumsily. The teacher, a frail-looking woman who’s name was Mrs.Illusinve, who in which always repeated to people was pronounced ‘ILL-oo-ZIN-VE’, which eventually got very annoying. Molly was always annoyed with her. She had a squeaky, punctual British accent and grammar and manner. These characteristics pinched Molly’s nerves like needles.
Anyway, Mrs.Illusinve waved her bony hand, bowing and clapping smiling her frail smile, laughing and hugging Katie, who smiled nervously, as if to say, ‘I don’t know who this is’.
“Thank you, Katie! Very good, go! Sit-sit! Now, very good, now now class, who is nexxxt?” she accentuated the word ‘next’ with her naturally- and crisply annoying- mousy British voice. Molly gritted her teeth. Her forehead tightened in irritated frustration. She, then, raised her hand.
“Molly!” Mrs. Illusinve said in surprise. Her thin and now damp brow knitted together, studying the serious, dark, mysterious girl. She hid her fear well but not well enough, for Molly could sense her nervousness.
“Very well, Molly,” Mrs Illusinve tut-tutted. She waved her hand, which flashed back and forth like a butterfly’s wing, a little one of Mrs. Illusinve’s seeming British quirks. “Now, Molly, tell the class what you did your report on.”
Molly glared seriously at the classroom, dark circles hauntingly hovering beneath her eyes, making her seem a youthful, horrible nightmare of a girl. Her black, straight hair made her even more demonic-like. It hung low, bangs covering her face. Shiny, yet such a dark black she was terrifying. She had porcelain skin and dark, purple eyes. She looked like a horrid beast of a girl who had been kept in a cage her entire life. She examined each of them with terrible eyes that demanded to be challenged. She took a shuddering breath, a child who had been tortured with the ability to know everything flashing through her facade of darkness.
Her appearance of cruel, pressuring, analytical darkness came rushing back.
“My report is about how we die, no mater how much the Lord loves us.” she whispered, her voice deep with misery she hid poorly behind her darkness.
“MOLLIGAN HANIFAR!!!!! MIGHT I TALK WITH YOU IN THE HALLWAY, PLEEEEASE?!!!!” Mrs.Illusinve shrieked, her British accent making her sound like an old woman, her fear shaking her voice, for no one ever spoke to or reproved of Molly’s seriousness.
Molly, who had never, ever been scolded, was a little shaken, but held herself with her mocking attitude and tenor.
She calmly walked out into the hallway with Mrs.Illunsinve. Mrs.Illusinve slammed the door behind her. Molly jumped a little. No eight-year-old could not get nervous from a door-slam.
“This, Molly, is a Christian school. No, not a Christian school, THE Christian school. The Polates Kummicker Professional Christian teaching school. You’re here because you’re a genius, or so your orphanage claims. You cannot say such a God-defying things in MY class. If you say such nightmarish things ever, ever again, I will report your questionable faith to the principal of this school.” Mrs.Illusinve’s lecture went on for another ten minutes. When they returned to the classroom, the class was laughing and giggling and making horrible little monstrous faces, trying to imitate Molly.
Molly’s mouth uncovered her teeth ever so slightly, and she let out an unnatural, hideous growl that forced everyone to look at her and give a gasp. A sleek, blond girl who was skinny yet already slightly curved, even at age eight, stood up and gave a monstrous face to Molly, making a little growl that couldn’t possible compare to Molly’s, but was funny to see. The kids all laughed at her little antics.
Mrs.Illlusinve quieted them all down, right after she laughed with them and announced that the blonde girl’s name was Andrea, and that her report was actually next.
Andrea stood up and walked to the front of the class. Her hair was shiny, blonde and long. She had pale blue eyes and thin eyebrows. She had a high, pleasing yet mocking voice that made you feel jealous. She wore a pink skirt and black leggings, a pink tank top and a sleek, shiny black jacket. She had a ton of silver, gold and bronze bracelets dangling from her wrists, along with golden tear-shaped droplets of earrings. She even wore smokey eyeshadow. She played and twirled with her hair as she announced her report in her high, babyish voice.
“My,” Andrea began, as if she was the most important thing ever. “Report is on the beauties,” she aimed her brilliant eyes to heaven,”Of the Great Lord himself. I want to make the world see how wondrous and perfect He is. I want to allow people to change their ways. To see how glorious He truly is,” she finished the sentence with false, perfect reverence.
Almost as if she merely thrives on our attention, on our adoration and envy, Molly thought with the skepticism she had beaten into herself. Andrea held the paper as if she didn’t recognize the words.
The air was suddenly filled with ‘uuuum’s and ‘uuh’s and ‘errrr’s. Mrs.Illusinve tapped her finger on her elbow, all adoration now poisoned with a shocked (Again, well-hidden) worry of the possibility that Andrea didn’t do her homework herself.
Andrea seemed to get her homework again.
“I think that the Lord is perfect unlike man and His existence. I think and wish I could be so perfectly a prayer and be as well-mannered as He. That is why,” she paused dramatically for effect.”I wish to be Christian.”
Mrs.Illusinve stood up and applauded. She stood there and applauded. The rest of the kids -the loudest, a boy who was madly in love with Andrea, Michael Kishter- clapped. Her best friend, a black girl, Keisha, even cheered for her.
Molly didn’t clap. She didn’t even stand up. She sat there and glared at Andrea.
Andrea, not to be challenged, jumped out in front of her.
“Whatcha problem, girl?!” she demanded in a ghetto accent. “You gotta problem wit me? You wanna go? I don’t care we’re in a Christian school , I will beat your-” she was cut off by a very startled Mrs. Illusinve.
“Andrea!!!!!!!! I am very, very disappointed with you! I-!!!” a room full of cheering and laughing and clapping children cut her off. Andrea did a totally fake cheer-leader pose and even did a football cheer to the door. She smiled so widely, her crystal-white teeeth glittered. She was tarried outside by a now frightened Mrs.Illusinve.
The kids immediately erupted into loud arguments and cheering and debate. Eventually, Katie, the cute little innocent, as Molly thought of her, scooted over next to Molly. She gazed at her with wonder and adoration in her eyes, her giant, brown, sparkling eyes. Her thick eyelashes batted loudly, or so it seemed to Molly’s sensitive hearing.
“I’m Katie,” she said, her voice loud, high, and sugary as Andrea had made her voice seem. By now it had been obvious that Andrea had been trying to sound like a baby.
Anyway, Molly, instead of glaring at her, smiled. Her face immediately lit up from her normally depressing and just plain frightening tenor. Her eyelids rested a little, as opposed to her large, glaring, hateful stare. She tucked her black hair behind her ear, letting her bangs shining brightly and healthily against her pale face. She looked almost beautiful.
Katie beamed at Molly’s transformation. She scooted closer until they were in acceptable range of sitting... Normal range, in fact.
“I know,” Molly said, her voice, not sad-sounding at all, but, rather, happy, yet heavy with the depression of knowing.
Katie raised her eyebrows in surprise, not expecting that Molly already knew her name. She grinned.
“You’re Molly,” Of course. Everyone knew Molligan Hanifar’s name. She was the prime target of controversy.
“Yes.” she replied, her voice slow, a little deep for an eight-year-old, and a little too seductive to be a child. She had an adult’s voice, not the high one of a kid’s.
Katie, on the other hand, was totally different.
“Why are you so nice? I thought you were demunnetted.” Katie inquired. The word she had meant to say was ‘demented’, which she didn’t know meant. Molly, however, realized what she had meant to say.
“Oh, no. I simply am studying everyone. You’re all so interesting, so interesting!” Molly looked at Katie meaningfully.
“Your father is in Iraq. I know because he gave you that pendant, which says ‘I’ll be home soon’, and you have a drawing of you and him together, with him holding a gun.” Molly said, giving Katie an example of her prowess.
Katie looked at her, her eyes full of admiration.
“What else can you see?” she asked, unknowingly childishly. Molly, however, was used to people being children.
“I can see that Andrea gets into fights alot. She has bruises all over her arms, which she hides with her jacket... I saw her take it off, then put it back on. Also, Michael picks his nose because it’s bloody!” They both giggled at that observation.
“Oh and Mrs.Ilunsinve is going to be in Puerta Rico next week,” Molly added.”I can tell because her purse is open and she has plane tickets. It’s going to be a honeymoon, because she was married yesterday, which I can tell from her new ring. She also has either bad morning breath or she needs to buy a new toothbrush, because she has mint Tic Tacs and mouthwash.”
“Wow! You’re amazing!” Katie whispered, clutching her bracelet.
“Yes... But it is so.... horrendous to know everything about a person... Whether they ate breakfast or if they’re pregnant or if they have been stressed by their new stepmother,”Then Molly added,”Which all applies to Mrs.Illusinve, by the way.”
“Look! They’re coming back in!” Katie scrambled back to her seat as quick as she could.
Molly immediately flashed back her Gothic-seeming color.
Andrea came strutting back in, looking severely annoyed. Mrs.Illunsinve came in behind her, deeply buried in her thoughts. She stepped in on toes, her heels too high for her frail and slim structure. Her tip-toed back to her viewing seat.
Molly slammed the orphanage building’s thick metal doors open as if they were leaves. She seemed to float across the room. It was empty. Quiet. Deadly.
The room was terrifying in a way that could only be provoked by sheer boredom. The floor was gray concrete, the walls high and white, the ceiling thirty feet above Molly’s head, white as well. The beds were evenly spaced, white bedsheets, all exactly the same size, all of them made the exact same way. They all had metal frames. They all had one white pillow, one.
It was so boring and plain and terrifying and containing that Molly cried herself to sleep every night. It felt like a prison. Like those scary movies where everyone was exactly the same....
Molly tossed herself into her bed, messing up the covers ever so slightly. She jumped and danced and acted like Andrea on crack, trying to mess it up as much as she could. She tacked up the nightmarish pictures she drew on purple paper at her school, trying to individualize her bed space. She ripped her sheets off and tore them into millions of ribbons. She ripped her pillow. She grabbed a metal bat she hid beneath her mattress and beat the bed frame until it was dented and crooked and goth-looking. She stepped back and admired her work. Molly then ran out of the orphanage, running from the evidence, taking her now crooked bat with her.
She ran to a nearby park and sat beneath the slide and cried. She herself had nailed boards up that only she knew how to find the weak spot where you could twist and loosen and finally twist the wood piece to allow herself in. She slowly opened the secret her heart longed for, kicking herself in, and twisting and pulling the door closed. She put her knees to her chest and her head between them and cried. Sobbing, she began to dream into a vision.
“Leave me alone!” Mrs. Illunsinve shouted, tears streaming down her cheekbones like rivers. She had just opened the door and then ran out of it, slamming it along behind her. She ran down her sidewalk, her hand wiping her tears. The car, a new Camry, was sitting blankly in her driveway. She tore the door open and jumped in, and slammed the door closed. She fumbled with her keys and remembered to lock her doors.
An angry, huge and buff man exploded out of her door, running out of the house and to the car. She panicked and screamed and tried to ignite the engine. He had reached the Camry and tried the door. Locked. Cursing, he began to yell.
“MARINA! DON’T LEAVE ME! I’LL KILL YOU....” he continued saying terrible things, beating his hand on her window. She stopped and pressed her hands against her face, breaking down and crying.
“How could I ever have loved you...?!” she whispered, looking to the sky, as if to ask God for help. The car was on, so she put her hands on the wheel and slammed the pedal. The car squealed away form the big red haired man, him curing more and kicking the wheels as they passed.
Molly gasped, erupting from her vision, realizing what she had just seen. More tears came down, more silent this time. She hadn’t known....
Floating back to reality, Molly realized she wasn’t alone.
“HOW DID YOU GET IN HERE?!!!!!” she shrieked.
Andrew looked up at her, her gray eyes turning to a beautiful violet. She gasped, put hand to her hair, her face unbelievably beautiful. black hair seemed to be underwater, it was so beautiful and Andrew just loved it. Her skin was clear and pale. The dark shadows beneath her eyes reminded him of eye shadow.
He fell in love immediately. But as her eyes changed colors and and she became more life-like. She gasped. Then she looked at him. Outrage and anger flooded her eyes.
“HOW DID YOU GET IN HERE?!!!!!” she shrieked horribly, his ears stung by the sharpness and cruelty in her voice. Her hands had went to her sides, holding her an inch off the ground, in his face. He smiled radiantly, because he knew why she was angry. She was confused. She was very sad. Someone had left her, leaving her with this power, some curse....
She was so brilliant and smart and amazing that no one understood her. She blamed everyone, who else? She was alone, utterly alone. He listened to the story behind her words.
“I saw you open the door, so I came in. You have such beautiful gray eyes.... Then they changed colors. I have watched you in amazement until you came back to reality.” he whispered with adoration. Her features shifted to one of confusion and disbelief and a hint of happiness.
“What?” she asked, her voice soft.
He took her hand, his light tan on her pale porcelain.
“Who hurt you?” he asked solemnly. She gaped and at him, and then she broke. Tears flooded and she hugged him. He hugged her back, telling her things would be alright. She faced him and kissed his tan cheek and played with his curly brown hair as she told him everything.
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