Thursday, October 25, 2018

Flash Fiction Winner Macenzie McManis - 7th grade

Bittersweet Melancholy

Mary Shelley once wrote, "Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change." Before all of this, I would have disagreed, how bad can change be? It's often good for you. Let me answer that, change can ruin everything. It will change the way you think, how you learn, and the person you'll be. It all rides on change. You don't stay the same forever do you? After being turned upside-down, my view on life have changed greatly. I'm Levi, and this is my story.

One dry, winter day, the sun shone through the leafless trees, my gaze traveled along the lines in the rough bark, mentally tracing them. My vision turned back to my small house where my mother lived. I began to sprint up the stone steps, my shoes making satisfying thumps. The glass front door suddenly opens, the glare of the sun hitting my eyes before disappearing. My mother stood in the doorway.

"Get inside, Levi! You're going to catch a cold!" I was going to have far more worries than that, soon.

I reached the door, my rosy fingers gingerly touched the freezing glass as I quickly closed the door behind me. The warmth of the house making my fingers numb. Smiling, I smelled the familiar scent of coffee. We're big coffee drinkers, even if it's bad for your teeth. I quickly ran to my room, dropping off my backpack, before rushing back into our grey and white themed kitchen to grab an apple. Walking into the living room munching on my red fruit, I spotted my mother sitting on the khaki couch.

"I have something to tell you at dinner, so don't run off," Mother stated solemnly. My heart felt as if it sunk into my chest, dread running through my system. I nodded, sitting on the couch, finishing my apple as I watched the news blatantly.

After a while, I spoke, "Is the news good? Or bad?"

"Depends on how you take it."

I sighed, she hadn't given me any clues to what the news was, it angered me.

I returned to the kitchen, throwing away the core of my apple, the slightly yellowing inside disappearing into the black trash can. I sauntered into my room, relenting the fact that I had homework. Zipping open my backpack, I swiftly retrieved it. Picking up a pencil from the inside of my desk, I began working.

Sometime later, I finished my homework, shoving the papers inside my bag. With the smell of cooking food, I quickly darted through the hallway into the kitchen, tripping on the floor.

"What's for dinner?" I asked, my nose twitched due to the steam that rose out of a pot on the stove.

"Just simple macaroni and cheese, I'm making it the way you like it, extra cheese and milk," she answered.

"Nice," I smiled, watching as she poured noodles into the pot. I turned away, not particularly interested, turning to the living room. I sat on the couch, jumping at the coolness, and reached my hand down the arm, groping around for the box my electronics reside in. My hand hit it, and I quickly pulled it upwards. I peered inside, box sitting on my lap. Pulling out my DS, IC replaced the box. I mashed the buttons as I attempted to beat a boss that I've been at.

I heard footsteps, "Supper's ready!"

"Coming!" I shut off my game, replacing it. I rushed to the kitchen, stomach growling.

I pulled out a wooden chair from the table, seating myself and watched as she placed a bowl in front of me. I have to wait for it to cool, as not to burn my tongue, but the smell urged me to take a bite. I hungrily lifted a forkful into my mouth, flinching at the burning feeling. I dropped the fork, gingerly chewing the noodles in my mouth, grimacing.

Mother sat down in front of me, smiling, the laughter in her eyes at the sight of my face. I awaited for the news that she was to tell.

Finally, after some forkfuls of the moderately warm noodles, Mother spoke, "So...I was offered a new job," she started, "It's in Michigan."

My thoughts ran wild, "Are you going to take it?"

"Well..." she started, and I knew our fate, "I think I am."

I comically stopped eating halfway to my mouth, "But Michigan is states away. I'll have to move schools..."

"But," Mother interrupted, "We will have a bigger house, and this new school has better academics."

She attempted to continue, but I ran off into my room, shutting the door. It took me so long to get used to the kids here and now we were moving? It took me at least four years before I found my best friend Toby. I was going to have to say goodbye. There would be no more after school football practice or laughing because somebody didn't do their homework. Everything would be different. I'd be the 'new kid' again. This changes everything.

Taking a deep breath, I opened the door, seeing Mother still sitting at the kitchen table, and I sat down, "When?"

She looked at me, "What?"

"When are we moving?" I repeated.

Mother gave me a surprised smile, "I was hoping sometime next month, I've already arranged things."

I took a breath, not enough time. Even if she could give me a year, it would not be enough time. It wouldn't ever be enough time.

"Okay," another breath, "I'll arrange goodbyes."

"Oh! I'm planning to have a going away party, you could invite anyone."

I gave her a sad smile, feelings conflicting inside of me. This was truly sad news, but through the melancholy of leaving home, my mother is letting me have a bittersweet ending. I should feel lucky, as not everyone even gets a bittersweet ending, but I can't feel gratitude. Not right now.

Not everyone beats that boss in their video game.

Minor formatting. Story appears as submitted by the author, unedited.

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