The city was painted a dull, gray, throbbing entity by the freezing rain that had drenched the cold winter morning. Smoke rolled out of the chimneys of comfortable houses with comfortable furniture and comfortable children. London was merry. With Christmas only a few days away, people were enjoying their holidays with lush wine and the company of their loved one’s.
A little boy sat and swung his legs, watching buses come in, people board and people depart. About an hour ago, he started playing a game of counting black umbrellas. He would count until ten in English and then switch to Arab. In this combination of languages, he often ended up just confused and had to start all over again.
He shuddered as a chilling gust of wind rattled his weak, feeble body.Clutching the handbag tighter between his thighs, he started to shake. He had been waiting here all morning, trying to be as invisible and irrelevant to Londoners as possible. And a child sitting at the bus stop was the least of their concerns as all of them herded for some last minute Christmas shopping.
This was his mission, the reason he came to London in the first place. He didn’t exactly understand what was happening or why he has sitting here clutching a handbag from the crack of dawn. But all he remembered was his mother’s words, as sweet as honey, at the minute of his departure from his village. “You’ll do as they say, my delightful boy, for only then can you come back”.
Our nameless hero sits there still, as a new wave of bitterly freezing rain pours down on the top of the bus stop. The boy slowly slides the handbag inside his jacket as he sees a lady with wrinkly skin and gray hair approaching him.
“Hey” She shouts over the howling wind “You’ll freeze your fanny off sitting over there! Haven’t you got somewhere to go?”
“Go away!” He yells, the only two words he knew. The only two words he was taught.
The woman, seeing a police officer in the distance walks away.
The boy sits comfortably again. Straightening his jacket . He remembered what the men, who spoke his language told him last night. “If someone suspects, press the red button right away”
He opens the handbag and there it is, a red glistening button staring straight up at him, attached to the ticking device. He thinks about his mother and her words “For only then can you come back” His tender fingers press the button and suddenly everything is blank. The woman, the police officer, the rain and the bus stop. Everything ceases to exist.
*This was a story I wrote when I was still in uni. Nothing serious, just a fun little project for my creative writing class. Thought this would be appropriate since it’s almost December! Hope you liked it!