June 1980

Copyright © 2013 C.L. Mannarino
All rights reserved.

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“I don’t think this is a good idea.”

Seven-year-old Shay looked over her shoulder at her five-year-old brother. She stood at the very edge of the roof of their back porch, her new pink kite fluttering in her hand. A hot wind whipped her hair off of her face and stung her nose as the sun glared down at them, mere hours away from the horizon line. He was hovering a few feet behind her with his head poking out to the side as he tried to watch what she was doing, his eyes wide and round.

Terrified, but curious.

“Are you afraid, Andrew?” she asked.

He lifted his eyes to her as he clenched his pudgy hands in front of his tubby waist. His lips pursed and he nodded.

Shay smiled at him. “Don’t be. It’s just a kite. Besides, you’re too short to run. Now the wind will just do the lifting for me.” She turned back to where the breeze has gentled and raised the kite higher.

Andrew gasped. As she flung the kite into the air, pitching herself forward, he called out, “DON’T!”

Shay wobbled. Heart fluttered in her chest. She waved her arms around, flapping against the breeze to keep herself in place, but she could already feel herself starting to fall.

Her sneaker lost its grip on the roof. She slipped.

“SHAY!” she heard right before she hit the ground, her arm crushed underneath her side.

For a second, she couldn’t breathe, just blinked at the black expanse of the driveway underneath her. As she regained her bearings, she muttered, “I think it’s broken.” A second after that, she burst out crying. Andrew’s cries of “MOM!” filled her ears from where he was still standing on the rooftop.


Image found here. I’m hoping this will be the first miniature of a series about Shay (maybe even a few Clare stories) as she grows up, but I won’t promise that I’ll be posting about her every week. I hope you enjoy!

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