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As I stood outside covered thoroughly in warm winter clothes, I was still cold. It wasn’t just the super power air conditioner cold, but the bitter freeze of North Dakota. And to top it off my younger sister still hadn’t arrived as she promised.

            Half an hour later, I started to feel both my hands turning stiff in the bitter air.

            “That’s enough,” I thought to myself as I rubbed them together “she hasn’t come in two hours. I’ll turn into a popsicle I stay out here any longer.”

            So, I sprinted off to the closest store, in hopes that they’d at least have a heater running. Turned out they did.

            As I walked into the warm rich smelling air, I couldn’t help, but smile like a mad man and drown myself in its very essence. The air held an aroma of thanksgiving goods and pastries, hot chocolate, and best of all pancakes. It all just made my mouth water and the tummy rumble.

            Somehow, in aloofness from this majestic oasis, I got myself in a booth by the windows. If this were any other day I would just been that North Dakota teenager enjoy our fair city with a bright smile, until I saw her here.

            It was none other than my fifteen year-old sister Angelica, sitting on her little rump with a splendid breakfast laid out before her. All this time while my butt was slowly turning into a block of ice she was inside nice and cozy. That’s just not right.

            I got up from my seat and slowly made my way up to her. “So little miss Angelica to go off and have a lovely breakfast, while I’m due to torture out in the cold.” I said in the strictest voice I can possibly muster.     

            “Oh, hey there Mich” She said in utter perplexity “I didn’t see you there, and I can explain. I’m really really sorry.” She gave those stupid puppy eyes.

            Angelica is a small girl, with long brown hair, and eyes like honey. As you can guess a lot of guys in her school are crushing on her, though I can’t even comprehend why. Only solid thing I can see is that she’s exactly like Dad, in both personality and looks. If only I had the same traits then to be ‘her’ ghost.

            I sighed “Yeah, whatever. Just hurry up Dad mus be mad by now. Off all the days you chose to have a sleep over you chose the day before our picnic, you better start think things ahead if you plan to graduate.”

            “I know already.” Her hand pointed over some cookies on her plate “You want some?”

            Right when I was about to decline, my stomach growled. Hearing this she laughed. “Um, sure. Thanks.”

            After we finished eating, we walked over to the Maple Pines Park. There Dad was waiting for us in open arms and a mild scowl on his face. What a strange combination.

            We gave him quick hugs, then went straight to our explanation.

            “Well, you see Angelica…”

            “It was my fault. I went into get something to eat, sorry.”

            Dad was surprised by this, Angelica was never the type to get serious. Like him she always butted out of everything and hide in the crowd. I wonder what else is staring to change.

            “Well I guess that settles whatever happened. I’m glad you got here, thought you guys would never come.” He said.

            Dad was a tall lean man, he had loving honey eyes, and shaggy brown hair. He like angelica were rarely serious and never caused much trouble or enjoyed it, they’re practically identical.

            “Now why don’t we get started on the day? After all it’s been a long time since we had a nice day like this.”  

            Behind him was a picnic table with junk food; Hershey’s bars, Cheetos, and many more, along with some actual ‘real’ food. He even brought our portable player with a stack of movies next to it. He brought so much, he must really be trying to make up a loss.

            We all knew what the loss exactly was. It was just four months ago my mom has as one would say passed away. It wasn’t anything like murder or car crash, but illness. A few months prior to her death she was diagnosed with leukemia, from there things got worse over time.

            As I said before I look nothing like my sister or Dad, I’m more like Mom. I’ve got her same soft green eyes, jet black hair, pointed nose, only difference is I’m tall like Dad. Her personality was even more beautiful than her looks, she was humorous in a geeky way, intelligent, and tough. I’m both blessed and curse in being so similar to her.

            We spent our thanksgiving day around the park, we fed the ducks, played some games, walked around, and Angelica and I competed each other to climb trees. I was amazing,

            Once the sun began to set, we started to watch the stack of films Dad bough as we ate our food. It was of course mostly junk food, Angelica and I got the chocolates and cookies and created an extreme chocolate cookie and stuffed it down.

            The first movie was the story of the pilgrims (as we do every thanksgiving), their voyage, the Native Americans helping them, and lastly the feast they shared together in thanks. Then there was a film of a family and their weird tradition on thanksgiving, like having an actual live turkey roaming around instead of eating it. The last one was a romance film he had just recently rented. It was about two young adults with problems and issues, where out of nowhere they happened to meet up and can’t as they say “forget that look in their eye”. Just the same old love story.

            Once he noticed the stars appearing Dad started a fire going and we started a conversation going on anything that came up. Though, even as we laughed and joked there was a feeling of a missing part.

            Mom wasn’t here. She wasn’t here to cry as the two hopelessly in love teenagers finally shared their first kiss, promising an eternity. Or her extravagant laughter during comedies, or even all those fun facts she drilled as she looked into the night sky. She isn’t here and never will she.

            Suddenly, as if reading my emotions, I heard someone sob. It was Angelica. She tried to hide, but the tears streaming down her cheeks like heavy drops of rain.

            “Why Dad? Why is life so harsh?” whispered Angelica in a pained voice.

            “What’s wrong baby?” he asked softly.

            “It’s not fair, Mom didn’t deserve it.” She said.

            By the he got up and was hugging her, with his chin resting on her head as she cried into his chest. “Tell me, sweetie. In a garden of flowers which one do you pick out the whole?”

            “The beautiful ones.”

            “Then so does life and death, all we can do it accept it.”

            “But then what’s the point?” I spoke out. “What’s the point, if everything you love will eventually be gone?”

            Dad wrapped one of his arm around me too. “What’s not the point? What’s not the point of feeling love and making memorize, wouldn’t you’ll be soulless? Wouldn’t it better to have felt it all than to be oblivious?”

            “Yeah, I guess. But, when will it be gone, when will it stop to hurt?”

            “Michael that only depends upon if you when you feel the time is right to move on and live to the future.”

            “So, basically never.” Said angelica.

            “No, knowing you two you will be able to do so, both of you tough teenagers.”

            “Ok.” We both said.

            “I’m sure she’s looking down on us right know with a smile. We can only be grateful that God brought into our lives.”    

            With that we sat there hugging each other, thanking both Mom and God for everything. Even if things change.



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