A blog where one NaNoWriMo Seattle Duck posts the chapters of the novels she never wants published for people to enjoy in the literary abandon.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Red Sandstorms Chapter 10

Max giggled as we walked towards the school.
            “You won’t hit any kids today, right? I don’t want to have to stop work to come take you out of class,” I said looking at her. It was no surprise that she laughed at me.
            “I promise. No hitting,” Max said, swinging her metal lunchbox. “What if it’s an accident?” I stared at her blankly.
            “Give me your lunchbox. This is not going on the playground with you.” Holding out my hand, she finally set the item in it. “Ms. Thatcher will give it to you at lunch. But you may not beat kids with it.” We reached the gates of the school, the teachers all standing out front. Max ran off to play with the other children as I approached her teacher.
            “She promises no hitting today? I don’t want to escort her to the principal’s office,” the teacher said, looking at me.
            “I’m sure she won’t. But just as a precaution, here’s her lunchbox,” I said, handing it off. The bell rang and the students all hurried off to their classes. Waving to Max, I started off across the base towards the office. My feet echoed in the hallway on the tile. From each open door I could hear phones ringing and people chatting. Shoving open the door to the room I was in, I shuffled to my desk. Just as I sat down, my phone rang. I watched it ring once, twice, three times before I finally answered.
            “Hello? …Yes Ms. Thatcher. No, I didn’t know she knew how to say that,” I said, listening to the explanation. “I’ll make sure it doesn’t happen again. All right, I’ll be there in fifteen minutes,” I finished hanging up.
            “Something wrong, Knight?” My coworker asked.
            “Yeah, my sister swore at another kid in Japanese.” She laughed, leaning back in her chair.
            “How’d she learn that?”
            “Probably from just listening. A lot of our old neighbors spoke different languages. She was the most fascinated with Japanese,” I said, running my hand through my hair.
            “Sounds like you could use some help. I’m sure it’s not easy trying to raise your little sister,” she said, placing a hand on my shoulder.
            “Thanks Jade. It’d be great if you could help, but I don’t want to burden you like that,” I said, glancing at her hand and then to her face.
            “It’s no burden. Come and have dinner at my apartment tonight. I’ll see if maybe I can solve some problems,” Jade offered.
            “If it’s not any trouble,” I said, getting up from my seat and shifting towards the door. “I’ll be back in ten minutes.”
            From a distance I could see Max sitting on the steps with Ms. Thatcher. They were talking, probably about what she was going to miss today. She smiled at me as I entered the yard.
            “I promise this won’t happen again. I didn’t think she picked up those words.”
            “Mark, you’re trying and that’s what’s important. Max is a smart girl. She just needs to focus… And it’s not just those words she knows. I was surprised to hear her say a few sentences,” Ms. Thatcher said, patting my shoulder. “I’ll see you tomorrow, okay Max?” As we walked away, I looked down at my sister.
            “You know a whole language and you didn’t tell me?”
            “I didn’t think you’d like it,” she answered, trudging through the grass. I laughed and ruffled her hair. Pulling open the door to the building, we headed upstairs to the office. I’m sure Max had grown accustomed to staying there rather than in class. Shoving open the door, my coworkers head’s turned as we entered.
            “Welcome back, Knight. Max, how’s it going?” Jade smiled, turning in her chair. I watched as she made her way around the labyrinth of our desks and to give Jaiden a hug. Taking a seat, I leaned back in my chair.
            “Max, homework done first and then you can goof around with Jade.” She looked at me, annoyed but nodded anyway. I watched as she started on what little homework she had. It wasn’t long before my sister was flopped over on the side of the desk, almost asleep from boredom. Pulling open a drawer, I set out a box of crayons and a few coloring books. A few moments of silence and then her head popped up.
            “Crayons!” Opening the box I watched her inhale a few times.
            “What’re you doing, goofball?”
            “I love the smell of crayons!” Max said, flipping open the coloring book. I laughed, seeing a smirk on Jade’s face. Leaning forwards, I returned to the large stack of paperwork I had yet to start. After what seemed like an hour or two, I looked at the current picture.
            “What is that?”
            “It’s a duck.” Why did she always answer so simply?
            “I see that… What is that duck wearing?” For the life of me I couldn’t tell what it was wearing.
            “A pirate’s hat, see?” She turned the book towards me and sure enough, the duck was wearing a pirate’s hat. It even had an eye patch and sword.  I shook my head laughing at the thought of a duck with a pirate’s hat.

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