Magnolia's Short Stories

Magnolias

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Hello everyone~

Still not sure what the guidelines are for stories on this site. I've read through a few, and am not sure if what I write is too vanilla. But I figured I'd post one of my short stories and see what feedback I get. If it is well received, I might post more. The story below is episodic in nature. It has multiple chapters, but they are only loosely related. Hope you like it, and thanks for reading!

Magnolias



The Introduction


I remember my first day at kindergarten very vividly.

I was wearing my favorite Superman t-shirt with Velcro shoes that lit up when I jumped on them. I was already trying to “dress for success.” The entire week leading up to the big day I had tried to reason with my parents why I didn’t need to go. I told them I could just go back to preschool where I was comfortable… I still had more to learn there right? I could spend my days at the library! I would watch nothing but Sesame Street! Somehow though my arguments weren’t effective and there I was sitting on the bench of a picnic table staring at my hands.

I had a green crayon that I’d smuggled out of my house. I held it between my palms, calming myself by focusing on the familiar waxy texture. It was my only friend. All the other kids seemed to have known each other already. The playground was much larger than the one at my preschool, and there were so many kids jumping around on it I feared I'd get pushed off if I tried to play. Normally, I would have been sitting right next to the teacher’s aide, that’s where I’d always found myself to be most comfortable. But THIS yard duty was nothing like the gentle and quiet preschool assistant that comforted me with her jokes and games. This lady was tall with a ruddy complexion and dark sunglasses. I hadn’t seen her smile once since I’d arrived. The lunch tables seemed a safer place, for now.

I sighed and stared at my feet. They swung back and forth unconsciously. The blacktop had chalk drawings on it, and I studied them. But soon, into the corner of my eye was a shadow. “Oh no!” I thought to myself. The yard duty was coming to punish me! I must have done something wrong! Scared, I kept my eyes down until I heard her high, bubbly voice for the first time.

“Why are you sitting by yourself?” she asked. She was very direct and already I was feeling defensive. I couldn’t get words out of my mouth so I sat there silent.

“Hello???” she said, a slight tinge of annoyance in her voice. She got closer and a hand came into my downcast view. She waved it back and forth in front of my eyes. “Can you talk?” she asked loudly. She wasn’t going away, and seemed to be growing impatient. I thought it best not to ignore her further. Still looking down at the blacktop, I answered.

“…Yes.”

“What are you looking at?” she asked, still direct.

“Nothing,” I replied. She was quiet for a while, as if confused by my answer. Then, without invitation, she sat down next to me on the bench. I could see her Mary Jane shoes with white socks. She was wearing a purple dress and her feet couldn’t touch the ground. She kicked them back and forth energetically. Feeling self conscious, I stopped moving my legs. In response her legs became still too. We sat in silence for a while as I waged a war within myself. My comfort zone was looking at the blacktop, but she had been the first kid to talk to me since I got here and, well, I was curious. I took the risk and looked up.

She was small, probably the smallest girl in the entire class. She had curly brown hair, blue eyes and freckles all over her face. She was missing a tooth in the front, but still was smiling wide. She seemed pleased that I’d looked up at her. She sat up straight and offered me her hand.

“My name is Sarah, what’s yours?” I hesitated but shifted the crayon into my left hand took her’s with my right.

“Mine is Lucas.”

“Nice to meet you Lucas!” Sarah said, still smiling. I couldn’t help but smile a little myself. Her eyes darted from my face to my left hand and back again a couple of times. I blinked, not sure what she wanted.

“What’s in your hand?” she asked.

“Oh… it’s um… nothing.”

“Of course it is something!” she said defiantly. “I can see you holding it. What is it?” I sighed and opened my palm, revealing the green crayon. It had been well used, but it was still my favorite crayon.

“Green! Is that your favorite color?” she asked. I nodded in response. She looked around to see if anyone was watching, then dug her hand into the chest pocket of her dress. Out came a purple crayon, equally well used. I made the connection instantly.

“Purple must be your favorite color,” I said with a chuckle.

“Yeppity yep yep!” she said. “Vi-o-let…” Sarah sounded out, carefully trying to read the label. “That’s just another word for purple,” she explained, though I already knew. We sat under the shade of the pine trees and watched all the other kids playing. Though she was silent I was beginning to feel comfortable. I opened my mouth to speak, but she beat me to it.

“Are you nervous about kindergarten too?” she asked.

“Yes,” I admitted.

“Well, don’t be!” she said with a small grin. “We’re friends now!”

I wasn’t sure how I felt about this. We’d only been talking for a few minutes and my shy personality always questioned people’s motives. What did she want out of me? Was she tricking me? If I said yes, would she laugh in my face? I went beat red and looked away.

“I’m sorry,” I heard her mumble. “Do you not want to be my friend?”

“No!” I blurted out awkwardly. I turned to face her. “I just don’t know how to be friends with people.”

“It’s okay!” she reassured me. There was a little pause and I could see the gears turning in her head. She was obviously thinking about something very deeply. Eventually, she continued. “Here’s an idea, let’s trade crayons.”

At the suggestion my heart stopped and my hand instinctively tightened on the crayon. My favorite crayon? No way. She could see the hesitancy in my face and changed tactics.

“Not forever, just for today. I’ll keep it safe, right here,” she patted the chest pocket. “At the end of the day we’ll trade back and that’s how we’ll know we’re friends!”

I eyed her, but without much thought my hand extended itself and she took the crayon and replaced it with her own. I watched as Sarah plunked my treasured possession into the pocket and buttoned it up for safety. I put her crayon in my pocket and we exchanged timid smiles. Soon the bell rang and recess was over. Sarah jumped up and giggled. “Race you to the line Lucas!” She was off before I could even respond.

I laughed and walked behind her. We never traded back the crayons.
 

kerry

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I like this little story, Magnolias. It is sweet and adorable and well-constructed. No, it is not our usual fare, for it does not deal with diapers, etc., but the fact is that this site is not merely a diaper site; there is room for stories about littles as well. Keep it up.
 
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