Scraps Are A Start

Short story taken place in 1996, Alabama

Alexis Park

Dear Lacey,

   Everything here is dreadfully boring. Every house is stacked brick, and they all stand shoulder to shoulder. And everyday, I must wake to the sound of my clock, not the birds chirping or the hellos of our neighbors. Even the barks of a dog would be nice, but the only two dogs here live five houses down and are pampered like little children. We went over with a loaf of bread and cheese, and the two devils reclined in their small beds, and stared at me, beady eyes glistening. Lacey, they bore holes in me, as if they were waiting for me to tap dance, play them a tune, and provide them dear old majesties some entertainment.

    I refused to visit any neighbors after that.

 If school is the same, I fear that my inner demon will emerge and I must take drastic measures- perhaps even hitchhiking all the way back home or painting the house a cheerful, bubblegum pink. That would bring a certain kind of pandemonium, don’t you think?

And now, Ma is calling me. She must want me to dust off the mailbox!

Toodles,

Donna.

   “Donna!”

  Rolling her eyes, she clicked the cap on her pen.

   “I’m coming!”

  Donna folded her letter, and slipped it into a envelope, addressing, stamping, and sealing in one flourish.

   “Donna!”

   “God.” She muttered. “I can’t make it down in five flat!”

  She clutched her letter, and slid down the stairs. Before reaching the kitchen, she ran outside, stuck the flag up, and sent off the letter with a kiss. Then, she dashed to her mother in the kitchen.

“Yes?”

Her mother’s back was to her, but Donna could still feel the disapproval from her mother.

“I want you to clean out the basement, is that alright with you?”

Donna perked up. The basement was full of old letters, articles, and trifles.

“Hmm?”

In other words, the basement was almost an adventure.

“Sure!”

And before her mother could change her mind, her long legs kicked open the door of the basement and tore down the stairs.

Her first thought was about the darkness. She fumbled around for a switch, and turned on a dusty lamp. Her second thought was—

Wow”.

From floor to ceiling, cardboard boxes were stacked high, lost pages sticking out, worn. Fancy vases leant on each other, and glass trifles scattered colorful light across the room,

It was absolutely a sight.

Shivering, she walked over, when a red, leather bound book caught her eye.

Walking over to it, she peeled it from the sticky residue that had hardened over time, connecting to the cardboard box, and opened it.

It was an album. Pictures immediately exploded from the book, tumbling to the floor as she opened it.

Donna smiled. Some had her best friends, some had her family- one even had a picture of her first cousin feeding a little Donna an ice cream. She closed it, and tipped a blue covered book into her expecting hands.

This one was a scrapbook. Laughing, she remembered making it. Messy bows of tape and glitter adorned the pages, and hearts were drawn in red crayon.

“How many of these are memories?” She asked herself.  She set down a box with a thud, sending a cloud of dust into the air.

achoo!”

She looked into a yellow book, another red one, and a fancy gold one. She laughed once more. This was her childhood!

The yellow one from the trip to the beach, the red one during her food exploration in primary school, and the gold during her first gala, where she waddled ungracefully around in inch long heels.

The next box also had books. Albums, scrapbooks, anything. But they were empty.

Blank, clean. And it was somehow drawing her in.

Ha.” Donna thought. “One day, all of this will be filled.”

She smirked. “And there’s no time— I’ll need to start now, don’t I?”

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