Her Only Friend
Fran woke up suddenly. The morning was quiet, but her world was in chaos.
She slipped into her dress and shoes and ran out from her house. Her family won’t mind the disappearance of a 14 year old.
She grabbed her hat and pulled it on her head as she ran, the wind blowing her hair away.
Fran ran by the paddy fields, the morning sunshine sifting through the paddy, little golden dust floating in the air. On other days, Fran would have stopped and taken a slow stroll, admiring the panoramic view, but today was different.
She didn’t have time.
Panting, she reached the town. But she was not here for the town or for the pretty little shops. Fran took a deep breath and continued running.
A loud noise blasted a few times, a noise she had once loved but now despised, as she reached her destination.
Panic rose in her heart and Fran looked around the dock frantically. She had to find them. She had to!
Fran stopped her train of chatter abruptly and looked up at her best friend. She was shocked.
Walter played with a blade of grass on his lap, quiet.
“You’re kidding me, right?” Fran said, strained.
Walter paused and flicked the blade of grass away. He didn’t need to say anything. She already knew from the tone of his voice.
He still said it anyway.
“No!” Fran’s eyes welled up. She hated to cry. Crying meant weakness. She didn’t want Walter to see her cry now. No, not now.
“Frannie…” Walter said, reaching out to touch her hair. Fran pushed his hand away and got up, pain searing through her heart as Walter used his affectionate pet name for her.
“No,” Fran shook her head tearfully, “You can’t go, Walter. Not now.”
Walter looked up at Fran. He was sad too.
“Life is better where we will be going to.” he said. Fran clenched her fists and looked away.
No more words were exchanged.
Fran had left.
Now, as the painful memory ran through her mind, Fran regretted leaving. Time together was precious.
Fran stopped to regain back her breath. She looked up tiredly and tried to find her friend. A tall boy wove through the crowds and Fran’s heart stopped.
She started running.
“Walter!” she cried.
Her feet caught on a rope loop and she tripped. She fell onto the hard stone dock and as she lay there, she started to cry. It was hopeless–pathetic. Her only friend is leaving. Of all people, her one true friend had to leave.
Picking herself up, Fran wiped away her tears.
Hopeless. Pathetic. Her family would laugh at her. Pathetic. Hopeless.
Fran took a deep breath and scanned the crowds.
Hopeless, pathetic, yes, but she had to try.
Her only friend.