Writing Catalog

Kaisa Strautnieks

Grade: 9

Laurel School

Instructor(s): Kimberley Butler, Kate Webb

The Girl with Red Hair

Flash Fiction

The Girl with Red Hair

A damp feeling pervaded the morning's fog. My spine tingled from the darkness in the woods. I'd never ventured this far.

My mother told me to listen carefully to human sounds if I ever get lost. The only thing I heard, though, was the crows cawing, the bugs buzzing, and the wind whistling.

The more I walked, the more panicked I got. However, I was able to calm down by telling myself that if I didn't show up for afternoon supper, they would undoubtedly send the boys with the hounds.

My breath became heavier, my nose began to run, and the moisture in my red curls increased as I walked. When they find me, I'm sure my mother will have to call the doctor.

A sudden burst of light revealed the mysteries of the woods. A loud thunderclap followed shortly after that. I quickly realized what was going on as rain began to fall. I need to find shelter immediately. I was fortunate to be wearing my white cotton coat, which kept me warm and dry. As the rain increased and the thunder grew louder, I ran as fast as I could to find home.

Suddenly, I fell. Unable to comprehend what had just happened, I stared at the tree stumps, my face dripping with rain. I felt winded and my head was pounding as I slowly stood up. I may have been developing a cold as my body began to experience chills.

But I kept running as the thunder grew louder.

For what felt like hours, I had gotten nowhere in the maze of trees. I wish I had never disobeyed my mother's orders to not go into the woods without an adult. If I hadn't, I would have been playing with my dolls while curled up in a warm blanket in front of the fire at this precise moment.

I continued to walk until I heard a woman screaming in agony behind me. It sounded familiar. Then, a man's voice, but I couldn't tell what he was saying. I turned around and ran as fast as I could toward the noise. I carried on in the hope that they could help me. As I approached, the woman's sobbing got louder. Soon, the woman appeared through the darkness. It was my mother.

My mother was holding something in her arms that resembled my doll. My miniature self, with rosy cheeks, blue eyes, and red curly hair.

She moved a branch, smearing blood on her hand. Her hand must have gotten scraped on the branch as she pulled it away. I hoped that the branch was the only reason for her blood and her tears.

I yelled with a smile, "I'm here mother, I'm here!" I found you! "

But there was no response. Nothing but traumatizing sobs. Perhaps she couldn't hear me over the sound of her sobbing. I circled her in an attempt to embrace her. Maybe it would comfort her.

But then I realized that it was not her blood and that it was not my doll that she was cradling in her arms.