TALES FROM HOME - Chapter Eighteen
As the happy little house continued its reverie, Julia began her own.
She dreamt of dancing in the kitchen, wearing her checkered apron patterned in blue teakettles and white kittens and her tired feet moved in the bed to the memory of that happiness. The excitement of finding the sad little house and sleeping in the dusty, cozy bed with her sisters the first time made her snuggle a bit deeper into the warmth of the faded old quilts. The thrill of discovering the chipmunks and the kittens made her smile in her sleep.
But in the same way dreams sometimes turn into nightmares, Julia’s slumbering thoughts turned into dreadful worries about the future.
Julia’s mind became filled with thoughts of storms building and forest fires threatening. She saw the wide, fearful eyes of her sisters looking to her for safety. She tossed and turned.
She dreamt about white, glittering snow falling and the dense, billowing smoke that had filled the kitchen when she had finally figured out how to make the giant, black stove work the first time. Would the stove and the fireplace in the living room keep them warm in the winter? And could they even find enough wood? She saw the wide, fearful eyes of her sisters looking to her for warmth. She shivered in her sleep.
A vision of the garden came to her mind: baskets of food piled up for winter and those same baskets growing empty. She saw the wide, fearful eyes of her sisters looking to her for their meals. She held her stomach and moaned.
The nightmares overwhelmed Julia’s mind, banishing all her happy thoughts. She tossed and she turned and she thrashed and she moaned.
She sought comfort from her sisters, but no matter how far she stretched out her arms she could not touch them.
The little house had watched Julia become more and more upset as her fears multiplied.
“I am here, I am here, I am here,” it whispered, but Julia seemed unable to hear the words of comfort.
“Wake up, wake up, wake up,” it whispered to her, but she was unable to hear the words of advice.
In desperation, the worried little house gathered all its energy and shouted, “Julia, wake up!”
To be continued on Tuesday, August 25th.
(c) 2010 Jennifer R. Matlock
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