by Brooke Hemingway, 12, USA
The December drama prompt was “giving.”
On the Street Corner
NINA and CASSIE walk down a busy sidewalk carrying parcels of treats and bags of clothes.
CASSIE: Today’s shopping was so fun, wasn’t it, Nina?
NINA: Yeah, totally! We should do it way more often. Like, every couple of months.
CASSIE: Or every week, just to keep up with the most recent fashions.
NINA: Absolutely. You know how bad it would be if we came to school with an expired piece of clothing on. Ugh!
CASSIE: I can’t even imagine doing that, can you?
NINA: No way.
The girls stand at the corner waiting for the stoplight to turn green. Next to them is a YOUNG GIRL, huddled, with only a thin jacket. The two girls ignore her.
CASSIE: This is my favourite part of winter break, just hanging out with my peeps and going to parties!
NINA: (looking at the young girl) What?
CASSIE: I said that this is my favourite…. (she looks at NINA and the GIRL) What are you doing?
NINA: (turns to CASSIE) Well, when my family still lived in Russia, we didn’t have any clothes or food or shelter, and just seeing the same thing here takes me back to the cold streets.
CASSIE: You have got to be kidding me.
The street light turns green, and CASSIE marches across the street, then turns around to see NINA still on the corner, staring at the GIRL.
CASSIE: Are you coming?
NINA: One moment! Go on without me.
CASSIE: Suit yourself, Nina.
NINA bends down next to the GIRL, who stares at her.
NINA: Um, hi. My name’s Nina. What’s yours?
The GIRL keeps staring at NINA and hugs her knees close to her chest.
NINA: Are you cold?
GIRL: (softly) Yes.
NINA: (riffles through her bags and pulls out a heavy woollen jacket) Well, you see, I don’t really need this one and can’t think of a better way to use it than give it to someone who does.
GIRL: Really? Thank you so much! (takes the coat and puts it on) It’s so warm. Thank you!
NINA stands up and walks across the street to where CASSIE is waiting.
CASSIE: Did I just see what I think I did?
NINA: We’re all human, and that means we need to take care of each other. I was merely doing my role in this world.
NINA walks away from CASSIE, who is left speechless.
Brooke says, “I am a twelve-year-old writer who is currently writing a YA fantasy novel called Stolen Magic.”