Goodnight

                                                                                    Adieux

Goodnight

     A new, golden sun gazed through the immense gathering of clouds.  Grace rises slowly from her bed that she has not left for two days. From the venerable mattress, she peeks through her squinted eyes to see a white blanket of snow covered in shimmering jewels as if her story books and fairy tales have come true.  Grace cautiously steps one foot on the cold wooden floor.  One hesitant touch gently calls another foot.  She looks up from her weak foot hold and tries to walk toward the shining sight.  Grace glances over at her snoozing mother as she slumbers warmly in a large blanket.
     The cold breezes that lurk by the icy glass warn her of the perils of the outside world.  Grace holds deep curiosity that warrants for just a couple daring steps.  One or two creeks utter from the wooden flooring beneath her feet.  “Grace, please lie back down,” her mother, Delilah, pulls back the covers slowly, “you need all the energy you can get for Sunday services tomorrow.”  Grace lowers her head with her eyes closed.  “Mother,” Grace directs attention to the window with her youthful eyes, “I think I saw something move outside.” her mother begins to wrap the warm blanket around Grace. A mysterious wolf swiftly trots through the tree line a few yards from her bedroom walls.  “Mother! A silver wolf just crossed the trees outside!” Grace excitedly exclaims.  Her mother smiles and says, “They are very loyal and will watch over us.” her mother attempts to persuade her to return to bed.
     After submitting to her mother’s request, Grace felt her knees giving in from the atrophy of lying in bed for so long.  Inevitably, she fell to her mothers’ feet. Delilah quickly tried to avoid her falling, but it was too late.  Grace held her mother’s arms as she struggled to support herself.  “I can make it back to the bed mother.” Grace assures her.  Delilah retorts, “I will not leave you to chance,” she gently smiles without distracting herself, “I hurt inside knowing that you are unhealthy.” Grace’s lip quivers at the thought of being separated from the tender care of her mother.
     Later that night, Delilah affixed an extra blanket to her dear daughter.  She left quietly and quickly so that Grace would not wake up to find her mother sneaking out.  Delilah sneaks away into the night quite regularly.  Delilah begins her journey into the city once a week to buy a certain type of medicine for Grace.  After marching through the settled snow and trudging through the cold air, she finds the glow of the street lamps which illuminate the cobble stone streets.  Icy sheets usually impair the balance of an ordinary traveler, but Delilah has taken this path before. 

The End

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