Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: DULL (05/12/17)
TITLE: But You Promised
By Jennifer Liang
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The screeches of her three children did anything but tickle 37 year-old Katrina’s ears. For the umpteenth time she tried to answer the same question, always posed by four-year-old Ada Lee.
“It’s raining outside. Do you really want to go on slippery rides? Too dangerous.” Her voice sounded patient but inside she knew the volcano was on the verge of exploding.
“Yes. I wanna go Mommy.”
“Well, we can’t.” The answer was short and to the point but did nothing to alleviate Ada Lee’s bored cry. Stooping to the preschooler’s eye level Katrina once again tried to alleviate the fears. “Wait two weeks and we’ll try again.” Of course that did nothing and a wail burst forth from Ada Lee as she ran to the bedroom.
Turning to finish washing the breakfast dishes another pair of eyes greeted Katrina. “I don’t like it, but I understand. We are rained out.” The voice of defeat came from twelve-year-old Jeffrey. “What are we supposed to do now? We have been planning this for weeks.”
“I know. I know. I’m sorry sweetie. Can you please go talk to your sister?”
“So, what’s today’s plan again?” Turning around to face ten-year-old Katie, Katrina was pleasantly surprised that her daughter did not seem too upset.
“After breakfast mommy is going to Starbucks alone. I need to start working on our taxes. Too complicated this year with the business start-up and all.”
“Ok. We’ll find something to do. Maybe daddy will help us.” Katie stumbled out of the kitchen finally leaving Katrina alone to wash the dishes.
“Good morning Honey.” Pete kissed his wife playfully behind the ear. “I need a favor from you. A last minute call came through and I can’t watch the children after all. I have a meeting at 11.”
“But you promised.”
“I know sweetheart. We’ll figure something out.” He grabbed a peach and tossed it up in the air as he whistled his way back to his office.
Katrina put down the dish she was drying and hung her head in defeat. Today was supposed to have been the family fun day and instead she had to manage boredom and the mountain of paperwork. It was definitely not funny that Pete could whistle it off! Where was her coffee when she needed it?
Katrina dried the last dish and listened intently. Silence. Oh so sweet. But, did that mean someone was up to something? Tip-toeing down the hall towards the bedrooms she heard Jeffrey’s voice grow louder and louder accompanied by occasional small giggles. Jeffrey was entertaining his sister with the mounds of books in her bedroom.
“That’s good,” thought Katrina. “But what about Katie?” She found Katie sprawled across her bed working on coloring something with the set she had just gotten for her birthday. Katrina smiled. The day of broken promises may have started out gloomy and dull but maybe, just maybe, she would have a productive day after all.
“Honey, I’m going out for my coffee. The kids are in their bedrooms. Call me if you need anything.”
At least one promise was kept even if she had to do her work at home. And they still had a family fun day to look forward to. Maybe they could even convince their family friends to join them? With that thought, Katrina popped up her umbrella and sprung out the door. In spite of the dreary rain Katrina’s day was starting to look better.
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