A Silent World
By Angela Shwe
Zach and Ginger were best friends. They both had fun at the playground together and played tag, hide-n-seek and tic-tac-toe. Zach got out some toy cars and handed one to Ginger. Both of them crashed cars into each other and Zach thought of something.
“Hey, Ginger?” Zach asked in a soft voice while holding his toy Lamborghini.
“Yes, what is it?” Ginger replied with a happy reaction while choosing another car to pick from the box.
“Do you promise me you will never get in a car crash and never leave me?” Zach whimpered while looking at Ginger with a frown.
“Of course not! Why would that ever happen? I promise I would never!” Ginger exclaimed with a shocked face.
“Promise? Forever?” Zach mumbled kicking the wood chips on the ground.
“Promise!” Ginger said, holding Zach’s head up. They both pinkie promised and continued playing with the cars while giggling and smiling. They both had fun for a while but then it was getting late.
“Ginger! We have to go now!” Kira cried out to Ginger while she was packing up her things. Kira was Ginger’s mom.
“Aww, already!” Ginger shouted back with a sad tone handing her toy car to Zach.
“You want ice cream, don’t you? And you can meet up with Zach next Sunday!” Kira shouted with a sigh.
“Wait, really? I get ice cream finally! Okay Mommy! I’m coming!” Ginger smiled and ran to her mother. “Bye Zach!” Ginger cried out.
“Bye bye…” Zach mumbled sadly watching her run to her mother. Kira and Ginger walked to Jerry’s ice cream store in the distance while Zach was just staring. Zach ran to his mother and started to sob loudly.
“Oh my God Zach! What’s wrong?” Ari asked Zach, confused. Ari was Zach’s mom.
“Mommy! I miss Ginger already! Can we get ice cream too?” Zach sobbed.
“Zach, you know that you can’t eat ice cream because of your diet.” Ari sighed, she looked at Zach while he cried on her lap.
Ginger finally got to go to Jerry’s yummy ice cream store after begging her mom to go for the past six weeks. She really wanted that birthday cake flavor she loved eating in the summer. After getting ready, Ginger and her mom were walking to the ice cream store. Ginger was so excited that she quickly ran across the street and something horrible happened. People walking on the sidewalks stopped and were gasping at Ginger as her mom screamed. “Ginger! My daughter! Call an ambulance now!” Kira shouted loudly. Everybody was so surprised and felt so bad. That was the time Ginger got run over by a car.
The ambulance came and parked near the accident. Ginger was just lying there like she was dead. Her mother explained what happened and kept sobbing in the middle of sentences. The ambulance took Ginger in the back of the vehicle. “I hope she will be okay,” Kira whispered to herself while crying on the hard concrete ground. “My daughter… She was only eight!” Kira cried out in tears.
Then a nice old lady came up to Kira and comforted, “Oh don’t cry, I think she will be okay.”
Kira slowly looked up at the nice old lady and smiled at her but then the smile faded away after three seconds.
“What’s your name honey?” the old lady asked.
“K-Kira,” Kira mumbled while her arms hugged herself.
“Alright Kira, let’s take you home. You have had a long day,” the old lady said with her hand outstretched towards Kira. Kira held her hand and got up. They both chatted and talked about how Ginger was going to be okay and how everything would be fine.
By the time Kira got home she waved to the old lady and dropped on her knees sobbing out all her tears thinking about Ginger. She couldn’t stand up. Kira got a call on her phone. She opened her purse and sat by the front door.
“Hello? What do you need?” Kira asked while hugging herself with her other arm.
“Hello ma’am! You may visit your daughter right now if you’d like. Otherwise, you can show up tomorrow but that’s your only chance. Have a good day ma’am,” said the hospital worker and hung up before Kira could say a thing.
Kira had no time. She stood up, grabbed her keys and her water, and then burst out of the front door. “I’m coming Ginger. Don’t worry,” Kira sighed with a small smile on her face.
Kira got in her car and went to the hospital as fast as she could without going over the speed limit. While Kira was driving, she was thinking of things to say to Ginger. It was going to be the last thing she would say for a month. She wasn’t going to be able to visit Ginger while the hospital helped her recover.
When she arrived at the hospital she quickly got out of her car and rushed to the hospital room. Kira kept checking back at the emails she got from the hospital to find the correct room. When she found the room, she was so happy to see Ginger, but she was too late.
“Ma’am, I’m sorry but you have to leave, you can’t visit your daughter now,” one of the nurses said politely. Kira was shocked and confused, her smile dropped.
“But I came here in time! That’s impossible! No, I refuse to leave. I need to check on my daughter right now!” Kira shouted very angry. She didn’t want to leave her daughter. Kira was so angry she kept complaining that she was on time and wanted to see her daughter.
“I’m very sorry ma’am but please leave. Your daughter is all good, you have a chance to visit her next month. We just need to do some tests on her and it’s all good,” the nurse sighed and waved at her with a disgusted look under her mask.
Kira took a deep breath, calmed down and said, “Okay, I’m sorry for my behavior. I’ll check on her after a month. I’ll be patient.” Kira waved back at the nurse and took off trying to be calm and patient.
When Kira got home, she was so disappointed. She dropped herself on the floor and started to call Ginger’s father. She waited for him to pick up, but he took forever. She got up and put her phone in her purse.
“I hope you’re safe Ginger,” Kira whispered to herself and went to bed trying to forget everything that just happened.
After a month, Kira rushed to the hospital as fast as she could. By the time she got there she ran over to Ginger’s room and was so glad she didn’t die.
“Ginger! Are you okay?” Kira asked worriedly. Ginger didn’t say one word at all, and her eyes were shut like somebody had super glued her eyes. Kira thought she was dead, so she started shaking Ginger to make sure.
Ginger opened her eyes slowly. “Mom? Is that you?” Ginger sat up slowly with a surprised look.
“Yes, yes! It’s me Ginger!” Kira said thankfully that Ginger was not dead. Ginger’s smile drooped down, confused that she couldn’t hear her mother’s voice at all, she couldn’t even hear her own voice.
“Mom… Mom?!” Ginger cried out shocked and worried.
“Yes! Ginger what’s wrong I’m here!” Kira cried out holding Ginger’s arm.
Out of nowhere Ginger started sobbing, she couldn’t hear her mother at all. “Mom! Why can’t I hear you? Please talk to me!” Ginger cried loudly.
“Oh no! This can’t be! You’re too young to have this!” Kira whispered to herself and started crying as well with her. Ginger wiped off her mom’s tears and then wiped off her own tears after.
They both stared at each other for a minute, but then Kira grabbed a notebook and started writing with her pen that she had when she was a little kid. She wrote down the words she wanted to tell Ginger. “Ginger, I can’t tell you what’s wrong with you yet but please take good care of yourself. I love you sweetie,” Kira wrote down on the paper and showed Ginger the paper.
“Mommy? I’m scared. When will I go back home?” Ginger asked while rubbing her eyes to wipe away the tears in her eyes. Her mother sighed and continued to write on the paper. She showed Ginger the paper. “Ginger, you will come back home soon. Would you like me to invite Zach?” Kira showed Ginger with a soft smile on her face.
Suddenly, one of the nurses came in and opened the door. “Hello Mrs. Fallon! You can take your daughter back home. I suggest you buy hearing aids for your daughter though. Have a nice day!” The nurse paused, then closed the door and went away. Kira was so excited to hear the news.
Kira got the paper and wrote down, “Good news Ginger! You’re coming back home!” She showed Ginger the message she wrote.
Ginger was so happy she got up the bed and grabbed her favorite penguin plushie. “I can’t believe I’m going home!” Ginger hugged her mother and then she grabbed her jacket and tugged Kira to hurry up and go home. Kira giggled and went off to the door with Ginger.
Later that night Ginger yawned and said, “Mommy, I’m sleepy,” while walking towards the desk Kira was standing next to.
Kira nodded at Ginger then she picked her up and walked up the stairs. After she got in Ginger’s room, she tucked her in her bed and waved to her while walking out of the room. “Goodnight Ginger,” Kira sighed while she closed the door behind her. Kira went to her room and went right to sleep.
The next morning, Ginger got ready for school and headed off to the bus while waving goodbye to her mother. While Ginger was on the bus, all the kids were in the back but there was only one person in the front of the bus. Ginger decided to sit with the lonely person. The moment between them was awkward but then the person lifted up their head. It was a girl. Ginger waved to her, maybe hoping she could understand she was deaf.
“Uh hey? Do you need anything?” the girl asked. Ginger saw that her mouth was moving but couldn’t hear a word at all. Before Ginger could say anything, the bus stopped. She was like her mother now, always getting interrupted. “Well, we better get off then,” the girl held out her hand waiting for Ginger to grab it. Ginger looked at her then the hand. She grabbed it and got off the bus.
“Hey uh, sorry if I was being awkward. I’m actually deaf but I can speak well,” Ginger whispered to her. The girl was surprised. Then she grabbed her phone.
“My name is Alianna Usoro. I see that you do talk well. What’s your name?” Alianna introduced and asked Ginger on her phone and showed it to Ginger.
“My name is Ginger Fallon! My friend Zach isn’t in this school today, I think. Maybe we could be friends?” Ginger asked while they were going into the school building.
Alianna nodded and they both went to their classroom. After they went inside the classroom, everybody was sitting at their desk and the teacher began to do a reading review. Ginger was scared that the other kids would make fun of her for being deaf. Alianna showed Ginger to her desk and they both sat and listened to the teacher.
“Alright class! Please come up to me if you have questions on these papers!” Ms. Penelope cried out to all the students while passing papers to all desks.
Ginger was afraid to tell Ms. Penelope she was deaf. She was unsettled and thought if the other kids heard her, they would make fun of her.
While Ms. Penelope passed out the papers on Alianna’s and Ginger’s desk, Alianna blurted out, “Ms. Penelope. Ginger is deaf so she wasn’t able to hear your directions.”
Ms. Penelope nodded and set her papers down on her desk. Ginger raised her hand trying not to make eye contact with the other kids.
“Yes Ginger?” Ms. Penelope saw Ginger’s hand raised.
“Can I use the restroom please? It’s an emergency!” Ginger hesitated.
Ms. Penelope nodded and continued to talk to the whole class again. Ginger ran all the way to the restrooms. She locked herself in a stall and lamented. All of a sudden, somebody started banging and shaking the restroom stall.
“Who’s there! Go away!” Ginger cried out.
“It’s me… Your best friend…” the unknown person whispered.
Ginger was afraid to unlock the stall. The power went out and the person left. After a few minutes, Ginger unlocked the stall and saw a note on the ground.
“Did I do something wrong, Ginger? I didn’t mean to! You ignored me… Am I invisible! Talk to me Ginger. I need to know why!” Ginger was very shocked at the note she just read. She was traumatized.
“I’m sorry whoever this was. I didn’t know!” Ginger whispered, then walked out of the bathroom until she saw a mysterious person standing in the dark. “Who are you? Please leave me alone!” Ginger stuttered, afraid of looking exactly at that unknown person.
“Your best friend,” the person laughed. Ginger was confused and worried. All of a sudden, the person walked over towards Ginger in a spooky way.
Ginger screamed while her eyes were shut. Then something strange happened. Ginger was back on her bed in her house. She saw her mother crying.
“Mommy, are you okay?” Ginger asked while patting her mom’s head.
“Ginger, you’re awake! Yes, I’m okay! Are you okay too?” Kira cried out while wiping off her tears looking at Ginger. Ginger realized everything that just happened was just a bad dream. She wasn’t deaf anymore. How long had she been sleeping?
“I’m okay Mommy. Let’s go and get ice cream! I promise I’ll be careful crossing the street,” Ginger said as she smiled.
The end… or is it?