The young girl lifted her eyes to the small cottage snuggled in the hills. A clear stream rippled by in front of the house, and the flowers bloomed bright and colorful all around. Carefully, the girl stepped over the little wooden bridge and across the cobblestones to the front door. She knocked and was greeted by a shy girl who opened the door to let her new friend in. The room inside the house was very small, and there were several shut doores connected to the room. The room itself was decorated nicely and had a cozy feel. There was a fire burning on one side of the room, and two cozy chairs were sitting in the glow of the fire.
The two girls sat down and began to talk. They talked on and on. The conversation had its ups and downs. Sometimes it was very cheerful; other times it was awkward; and other times it was gloomy. The more the two girls talked, the more they discovered about each other. At one point in the conversation, the visiting girl noticed that one of the doors in the room had started to open. It was very dark inside the room. The girls grabbed each others’ hands and slowly crept towards the door. By the time they had reached the door, it had completely opened to reveal a huge pile of junk, and the whole room had turned dark.
The shy girl had begun to cry at the sight of the junk. Her shoulders shook with sobs. Her friend hugged her close. Not able to go back now, the shy girl walked slowly toward the junk, her friend close by her side. The visitor watched while the other girl picked up a piece of the junk and began to talk about it. It had been a while since she had seen any of this stuff. One by one, the girl went through the entire pile until the room was empty.
The two girls turned to look at the junk, which now cluttered the main room of the house. The shy girl covered her sorrow-filled eyes, but then her friend shook her shoulder. There, standing in the room was a man. He saw all the junk and the shame of the young girl. He began picking up the pieces and placing them into boxes. The girls reached forward, offering to help, but the man held up his hand, and his eyes said, “I can do this.”
The girls watched in amazement as he stuffed everything in the boxes and then turned to leave. The floor was spotless, and the man struggled under the weight of the junk he was carrying. The look of pain in his eyes brought the shy girl to her knees, her eyes filling with fresh tears–this time, grateful tears. When she looked up, the man was gone. Her junk was gone.
The two girls turned back to the room that had once held the huge pile of junk. Now the room was bright. A neatly made bed was sitting along one wall, a dresser and a closet along another. It was late, and now with a place to stay, the visiting girl was invited to spend the night. Before entering the room, the girls embraced. It was a warm embrace, and both girls were somehow different than when they first met.
by Sarah Agee
dedicated to Loni Elley