Estelle Van Brummelen, Grade 8
She looked at the photograph again.
It was a photo of a little girl, who must not have been much older than seven, with a huge springy mass of hair piled on top of her head, glasses, ghostly white skin splattered with dark freckles and a giant toothy grin to finish the look. “Ha” she chuckled to herself, “Looks like a princess.” Still chuckling she went to put it back in between the window seat and the wall where she found it.
But something made her stop and look at the picture once more. She had this feeling that she had missed something, maybe something important. She looked hard and close at the picture. The hair, the face, the skin, the mouth, the eyes…That was it! Her eyes were the thing; the expression on her face was just about the exact opposite to what she was feeling inside. Just like they say, ‘The eyes are the window to the soul.’ They were so doubtful, questioning, sad. She looked like there was something missing, or like she was going through loss or something harsher.
Now she clutched onto the picture of the little girl tight. So many questions flowed through her mind, flowed free and fast. Who was this girl? Did she once live in the old mansion? Why was she so sad? Hundreds of unanswered questions kept on flowing through her head, questions that would never be answered.
One question stuck in her head now. How long ago was this? This one question was all she really wanted to know. The photo was so tattered and faded, so it must be quite old, it must be…
“Smile for the camera sweetheart.” Click went the bulb, the light almost blinded her. “Mummy, when it this over? It’s hurting my eyes?” Asked Rosalie. “Just be patient until he photographer has finished dear, it won’t be long now.”
When you first glanced at Rosalie getting her picture taken, you could tell that she was born for it. In fact she was the youngest actress of her time.
But anyone who knew her well would know that she didn’t care about the pictures. Not even one bit. All she wanted was for Papa to come back. But he was never going to and it was killing her slowly inside and no one ever knew. Everyone just got on, moved on, and the pain and anguish ended up killer her, softly, sweetly. She was just gone, like that.
She clutched the faded photograph close to her heart for a minute, tears flowing down her face. Maybe she did understand the girls feelings. Or maybe,,, maybe she just felt for the girl.
An angel came that night, with springy hair, freckles and a radiant smile. The girl pulled out the photograph, looked at it then at the angel, and left with her, forever.