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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Sibling(s) (05/01/08)

TITLE: I wanted a twin brother!
By Esther Gellert


Being a big brother didnít turn out quite how Iíd expected it too. I mean, I didnít even want to be a big brother in the first place. I told my Dad quite clearly what I wanted. I asked him for a twin brother, just a tiny bit older than me and as like me as two peas in a pod, just like the Miller twins. They always have a heap of fun playing tricks on folks and Iíve noticed that generally in families with more than one kid, the older kids get in a heap more trouble, even if the younger kids did the same thing. I didnít want to be the oldest, no sir-ee.

That day in the shed when dad asked if I would like a brother or a sister, I told him straight out what I wanted, but I guess he just didnít listen close enough. I could hardly believe it when he and Momma came home with a tiny little baby wrapped in a fluffy pink blanket.

Now, I donít deny she was a cute little baby, but she wasnít a twin brother. I reckon it would have been quieter around the house if Dad and Momma would have just listened to me in the first place. She was one noisy little girl. I couldnít understand why all of a sudden I wasnít allowed to make a sound around the house, and yet that little baby girl screamed all day and all night.

My poor Momma seemed like a different person. Her beautiful blue eyes were always full of tears and she hardly ever brushed her hair. When I was just a little boy, I remember Momma used to let me pass her the hair pins as she carefully piled her hair up on top of her head. For ever so long after Emily-Sue came to live with us, Mommaís hair just hung down her back, looking tangled and sad.

I remember the first day Momma did her hair again. It was the same day Emily-Sue laughed. Momma and I were kissing her little wriggly toes when all of a sudden she let rip with a big baby giggle. Momma laughed too and when Emily-Sue finally fell asleep, Momma brushed her hair, piled it up on top of her head and then came and held me in her arms for the longest time. She told me she was sorry she had been busy and then she let me help her make sugar cookies. We ate most of the dough before they got cooked, so we had to make a second lot so Dad could have some too.

I guess after that I didnít mind so much about Emily-Sue not being a twin brother. As she got bigger, she got more fun too. When she started crawling, we played chasing games around the table legs. Momma would laugh and laugh at us as she did her chores. One day we dragged the toy box out in the middle of the room and Emily-Sue started chasing me around it. After a bit, I was getting sore knees, so I just went and sat nearby and watched. She didnít see I had stopped and she went on crawling around and around that box for ages. Momma and I had a good laugh about that one.

I still remember the morning Momma found her laying still and blue in her crib. We tried and tried to get her to breathe again, but she just wouldnít. Momma lay on the floor and cried and cried until I ran next door and got Mr Thompson to come and see what had happened. After that the house seemed all full of strange people and they took my beautiful baby sister away. Now Mommaís eyes always have that sad faraway look in them. I can always tell when sheís thinking about Emily-Sue.

Sometimes we just sit and hold each other and cry. I donít want a twin brother anymore, but Iíd give anything to have my Emily-Sue back again.

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This article has been read 553 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Myrna Noyes05/09/08
I was touched by this story from the perspective of the older brother.

I smiled at this paragraph: "Now, I donít deny she was a cute little baby, but she wasnít a twin brother. I reckon it would have been quieter around the house if Dad and Momma would have just listened to me in the first place. She was one noisy little girl. I couldnít understand why all of a sudden I wasnít allowed to make a sound around the house, and yet that little baby girl screamed all day and all night."

However, the unexpected ending was so very sad. I loved the last line.

You did a good job with this topic!
Jan Ackerson 05/09/08
Oh wow, you really yanked the rug out from under me with this one--the voice is light and humorous, and then pow! I'm not complaining--you did it VERY well. It's a very thin line--if you'd been just a hair more witty, the ending would have really jarred. Excellent.

Quick note: The first sentence should end with "to", not "too".

Deborah Engle 05/10/08
I loved this all the way through, and then -POW! What a sad event. I agree with Jan, you handled this very well.
Joanne Sher 05/11/08
Oh, my. I did NOT expect that ending. Wow. This was very well-told. Made me wanna go give my kids BIG hugs.
Debbie Wistrom05/12/08
Great twist. Loved the voice of the big brohter and how he saw his Mom in the early days of his sister's birth.
Patty Wysong05/12/08
Oh, I'm still reeling from that one--and I've been sitting and staring at the screen for a few minutes. Sooooo well done. The POV was wonderful--it gave a real good feel to the changes within the family. wow. So good!
Joshua Janoski05/13/08
Wow. You got tears flowing with this one. I didn't expect such a sad ending, and yet it made the story more powerful. We don't always get what we want, we usually get better. And we need to appreciate all that we have been given, because we never know when we might lose it.

Thank you for sharing.
Lyn Churchyard05/14/08
Oh Esther, this was so good, I loved the conversational tone of the MC and the his heartfelt relating of his little sister's death. So very well done.
LauraLee Shaw05/14/08
Incredible writing. Loved the voice of this. The ending took the air out of my chest for a moment. Well done.
Sara Harricharan 05/14/08
Ahhh, what words at the end, to want Emily-Sue back. I liked the POV for this and especially the changing heart for how wonderful the girl was. This was precious-great job! ^_^
Aaron Morrow05/14/08
Wow...what a punch in the gut. Excellent writing and rhythm to this piece. The MC was very believable though I had a tough time pinpointing an age. Excellent impact. These are the kind of writing I love, I really enjoy being jarred and this one did so magnificently.
Dee Yoder 05/15/08
Oh...I didn't expect that sad ending...but it sure did the job of bringing home a powerful blow to the heart! I love the voice of the MC and the descriptions of his mother through his eyes. Really good characterization of the baby sister, too.