Part 1: Lost in the Big City

A juvenile fiction... mainly written as practice a while ago. Pete and Joley are young orphans trying to find their Uncle in the big city (of...??). Events and people they meet lead them on quite the journey in hopes of finding a new home, security, and all the things children hope for. Feel free to add a paragraph.

The worry was starting to set in. What looked familiar before now stood as question marks. “Have we passed that building before?” Joley asked, not really wanting an answer.

Pete sighed. “Maybe.” 

It had been seven hours since their feet left the 247 LX bus, landing them in middle of this foreign forest of skyscrapers.  The misery of sitting shoulder-to-shoulder on sticky leather seats now sounded like a dream come true.  After at least a thousand steps retraced, some thirty attempts to glean information from local street vendors, and trying to make sense of confusing and complex city maps, being lost was the only sure thing left. 

Pete gazed up at the beating sun. It was 3 o’clock in the afternoon.  He recalled the almost-forgotten excitement he shared with his sister early that morning. Was it really just that morning?  A lifetime had passed since then. The two siblings had been planning such an adventurous escape for weeks. Finally, their only chance came and they took it. Was it a mistake? Pete asked himself. What have we done?

For three long years the Pete and Joley lived on the very outskirts of town. People had probably forgotten such country existed.  Mrs. Jones had promised their uncle they would be “part of the family”.  Untrue to her words, however, the children were treated like stray dogs.  You’ll be sorry, Pete always muttered to himself before going to sleep every night on their makeshift bed of mildewed hay and tattered blankets.  Mrs. Jones had put a few boards up on the back of the house barely providing shelter from the rains and snow. “Yah keep out a trouble nah or yah can join them pigs in the barn,” She had said roughly. “These are hard times, yah know.”  We’ll escape, Mrs. Jones and one day you’ll be sorry! Pete was only 8 years old then and Joley just turning 5. 

“My feet… I just don’t know...” Joley collapsed on a nearby bench.  The bench looked as though it had been through a hurricane, faded green paint revealing splinters in most places and the wooden slats wobbly from use.  Regardless of its appearance, the bench welcomed the travelers with open arms as if understanding all their woes. 

Pete sighed as he slumped next to Joley.  “It’s gonna be a’ight, sis.” 

“Where is Uncle Riley?” Joley began to cry.  She had been trying to be tough like her brother, but her tired eyes couldn’t hold back the tears any longer. 

“I…” Pete tried to think of something comforting to say, but the words couldn’t be found.  His dry mouth and chapped lips tried again, “We will find him.  We’ll find that donut shop, too. Remember?” 

Uncle Riley was Momma’s brother. He was kind and cared for Pete and Joley as long as he could.  At least once a week, they he would take them to a small donut shop just down the street from his apartment.  Dipped in chocolate and covered in sprinkles, Joley could still remember how the donut would melt in her mouth.  What she would give to have one of those now!

“I remember,” her face brightening with such a delicious thought. But what was the shop called? She shook her head and wiped her nose with dirt-streaked hands.  She thought she could be brave, but she was downright terrified. Maybe Uncle Riley had been right.  “City ain’t a place for young’ins.”

“Don’t move.” A voice pierced the children’s thoughts like a dagger.  “Move and you’ll regret it.” The voice said again.


The End

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