A Tire Swing Story is a bite-sized "imagining" inspired by an object I discover while wandering. It could be a curbside trash gem or a message sprayed on a wall. A lost mitten, or an antique store find. Anything goes. I photograph the object and post them together, the story and its inspiration. There will be a new story every Monday and Wednesday. On Fridays, I'll discuss writing, life, love, and coffee. (In no particular order and maybe all at once.)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Jasper Delaney Part 2

Jasper Delaney, a boy born in the middle of an electrical storm, had many trials to face. When he was nine years old, he lost both of his parents in a car accident. No other family members came to take him in, and so Jasper was sent to Our Lady of Mercy, an orphanage.

The orphanage was built in an old school. It was a cold, damp place, full of echoes. The children slept in the gymnasium in rows of cots, under sheets that smelled of bleach. 

Jasper didn't have a single friend. He no longer ran everywhere or got into any kind of mischief. To everyone, Jasper almost seemed not to exist. Everyone but Abigail Scrap.

Abigail Scrap lived in the orphanage too. She never appeared to care that her skin was always dirty and her blond hair was tangled. Abigail was thin, and malnourishment as a young child had stunted her growth. She was much smaller than the other kids her age.

One day, she approached Jasper, who was sitting in the middle of the courtyard under the branches of a crabapple tree.
"Greetings," she said, "my name's Abigail Scrap. I'm nine years old, but I'll be ten next week."
Jasper looked up at this strange girl. He couldn't help but smile.
"My birthday's next week too," he said.
Abigail took Jasper's response as an invitation and sat on her haunches beside him."You can call me Abbie," she said.  

They were born on the same day, during the same thunderstorm.

Then for reasons he couldn't understand, Jasper told Abbie about the foal he'd saved. "I'm different," Jasper said, "I can do things. Healing things."
Abbie leaned in closer until Jasper could smell her unwashed hair. She regarded him with her clear blue eyes. "I can too," she whispered. 

In the cellar, they found a poisoned rat writhing in pain. Abbie crouched beside it. She placed her small hand on the rat’s body and it immediately grew still. Then, after a moment, the rodent sprang to its feet and scurried away.

Jasper smiled at Abbie, his first real friend. 
“I wonder how many more of us there are?" he said. 

1 comment:

  1. Brittany, this is the beginning of a most delicious novel! I want more...