More Help For My Story, Please!

Can you help me more on my story for school? Any ideas on how I can make her a part of the garden and show that she’s a bully without the taxi scene? And how to make her soften more?

© Copyright 2014 All Rights Reserved.

I crossed the street, my school bag slung over my shoulder, the contents–my insulin and water, plus some school books–heavy, a slight lilt to my step warning people to stay away. I could feel my dark ponytail hitting my shoulder blades.

I was just about to step onto the sidewalk when a taxi stopped a foot away from me. My heart stopped; my breath quickened. Before the driver could react, I beat my hand on the window, screaming curses.

“Apologies,” the black man mumbled as he rolled down his window, quickly rolling it up again.

He sped off the street, and I angrily spat on the ground. I wasn’t going to just let him go. I sprinted after the cab, my legs pumping in the hot air, sweat already dripping down my legs. I soon caught up to the taxi and resumed cussing him out. The man wasn’t fazed.

The taxi came to a screeching halt on a street I didn’t know, next to an abandoned lot. Trash lined the edges, but most was cleared away. People bent, their hands in dirt.

Dirt. Ew. I hated the feeling of dirt under my fingernails and it covering my palms.

The black man in the taxi ran out, and I raced after him, screaming how he almost killed me and he should be a safer driver and I’m gonna call the cops. But he ignored me.

A few people glanced up as we ran past, but I scowled at them and they looked back down to their plants.

The man quickly grabbed lettuce up out of the ground, shoving it into a bucket full of water. As he was bending down, I snagged his elbow, steering him to face me. Just as I was about to reprimand him, he wrenched himself free and ran back to his taxi. He sped off before I could react.

I was still pissed at him; I glared at the cab till it disappeared.

Then I realized I was still in the lot. The street sign on the corner told me a name I wasn’t familiar with. Perspiration dripped from my arms. I thought about retracing my steps.

And then I saw her.

She was crouched, her black hair hanging in front of her face so I almost couldn’t see her. She was watering a small plant, her hands digging into the ground. Her sneakers were muddy, her long sleeves pulled up.

I immediately remembered two years ago, when I had teased her. Her eyes were different: almond-shaped and only a shade lighter than her hair, which was raven black. But it wasn’t just how she looked; it was her demeanor. She had been quiet and timid, constantly crying and wiping her nose. I had picked at whatever I could.

But what pained me most was that she could have teased me, too, and others did. The insulin I had to carry around, the greens I ate and how I always denied sweets.

Yet she hadn’t. She had just bowed her head, tears dripping down her cheeks, and crawled away.


Maybe she forgot.

“Um, hi,” I said to her.

She didn’t look up.

“Kim?” I tried.

Maybe it wasn’t her. Maybe it was just a girl who looked like her.

This time she looked up, her eyes widening in fear. Quickly, she looked away and resumed watering her plant.

“Kim,” I said again.

“Go away, Koko,” she stated, her voice just above a whisper.

“Kim, I won’t hurt you, I promise.”

“Go. Okay? Go, Koko. I can’t talk to you!”

I stood my ground, my hands clenching into fists. I planted myself, like a strong tree. Kim stood up, the cup she poured water from in her hand. She ran off, leaving me.

A man came up to me.

“Hello,” he said, extending his white hand. “I’m Sam. Welcome to the garden.”

I wiped my hand on my pants and shook his politely. Sam’s hand was sweaty, too.

“I’m lost,” I told him. “I followed the cabbie here, and…well, yeah.”

Sam nodded. “You’re not lost anymore.” He reached into his back pocket and pulled out a handful of seeds. “Extras,” he informed me. “They’re flowers. Plant them. Next to the girl’s.”

He saw the whole thing, I realized, and blushed. He saw me trying to talk to Kim, saw her run away, scared.

I took the seeds. Sam brought me a cup of water. I dug into the dirt, not me grossed out anymore. I planted the seeds, and covered them with dirt, and watered them.

Sam smiled when I finished, like a proud father or uncle.

“Come back tomorrow,” he urged me.

“I’ll see if I can,” was my response.

I wanted to. I wanted to see Kim, and show her that I wasn’t all bully.

That I was human, too.    

All advice is appreciated!


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