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The Music Box
The music box tinkled a song that filled the air with peace. They were all asleep, my children, my sweet ones that I cherished more than life. I closed the lid and walked the empty space that separated me from them.
“Oh god, please help them to grow strong and graceful like a wolf, “I whispered touching my sons face, his dark hair in tufts, soft and bold. He was but five.
“Let them be as bright as a shining star,” I said as I caressed my eldest daughters face, taking the glasses from her eyes and placing them on the night stand. She was only twelve.
“Let them be as beautiful as the moon herself,” I cried as my hand gently stroked my youngest daughter’s cheek, her golden curls spewing around her as she lay in harmony dreaming of the music that lived within her. She was only ten.
I sang a lullaby from my youth and let the magical words float around me, I was happy, content with what was going to happen. I had faith in my god’s power. Tonight was a very special night, not a single person besides herself knew what was going to take place. I looked out the window and saw the moon high in the sky, the cherry blossom petals dancing around it. I was only twenty-five and yet life seemed like a distant dream, was I awake or asleep? I couldn’t really tell.
I closed my eyes and lied down on the floor next to my sweet children who I would go to hell and back for. I cried as I knew what was awaiting me beyond the lights behind my eyelids. Then I took a deep breath and plunged into the magic.
They awoke to a scream coming from their brother. Tsuki cradled him in his bed and hushed him. He whimpered and asked for his mother. Tsuki looked past her golden curls and saw Akarui collect her glasses from the night stand and go straight to mother’s room just across the hall.
“Where is mamma?” Riki asked. “I don’t feel her with us.” His big brown eyes tore at Tsuki’s heart. She couldn’t feel their mother’s presence either.
“Don’t worry, Akarui will fetch her, and she’ll put her wolf son to bed.” Riki smiled.
“Tsuki!” Akarui called from the hallway. She rounded the doorway and looked into the room, her glasses were offset and her hair was a jumbled mess. “Tsuki, I can’t find her, she’s not in her room!” Riki burst out in tears. Tsuki hushed him and asked Akarui to open the music box.
“Mama is out for a walk Riki, you go to sleep and we will find her. The music will take you to your dreams. When you wake up, mama will be here.” Tsuki was lying through her teeth, but at least they could search without Riki. She was sure that their mother was just out on the patio as always looking up at the stars that held their father. She was in no danger whatsoever and she was unharmed. This is what she wanted, begged to believe, but somehow she knew it was not true. Ever since their father died, they had to watch their mother carefully; she was always prone to stand outside looking at the stars as if she could wish their father back. Akarui opened the music box and it tinkled out a sweet song that their mother had sung when she was young. She began to sing with the music, her voice danced around the children calming them and their fears. A gasp from Akarui attracted Tsuki’s attention.
“What is it Akarui?” she asked as she laid down a half asleep Riki.
“Tsuki, come look.”
Tsuki made her way over to Akarui and gasped loudly. Their mother was curled up on the floor, her face was happy. In the flurry of activity to call the police, their grandmother and to keep the news from Riki’s ears, Akarui was the one to organize everything and she was the only one to keep her head. She wondered what her mother had seen as she died. She never thought it would be their smiling faces.