Flashback story – Lucinda Steel
“Pack your things, Lucinda. We’re going on a trip.” Her father said to Lucinda as he woke her. Her mother stood nervously behind him, shaking.
Without complaint, Lucinda did as she was told. Her teddy, some clothes and a colouring book were all that she crammed into her backpack. Lucinda was scared. Nothing like this had ever happened before. Her mother held her hand tight and told her everything was going to be alright as they walked out to the car. Lucinda still thought that her mother said it more for her own benefit to calm herself down.
The three of them strapped into the car and began heading towards the outskirts of the city, near the boarder. Lucinda could hear her parents talking in hushed voices about a tear in the wall and people coming after them. Nervously, Lucinda asked where they were going.
“Just away, Luce. We need to get away.” Her mother replied shakily.
“It’ll be okay.” Her father reassured her as he turned his head to face her.
All of a sudden, her mother screamed and Lucinda felt the car turn sharply left then down the steep drop down the side of the road. They slammed into a tree and then there was silence. Lucinda looked around. Her parents lay in their seats with their hands joined. The windshield was virtually non-existant and there was blood and glass everywhere. Lucinda screamed at the top of her lungs and began to cry. She tried to shake her parents awake, hoping that they were only asleep, but they didn’t move. Lucinda began to bawl louder and louder.
Eventually, she stopped crying and just listened to the silence. She rocked back and forth, listening. After three or four hours of waiting, two dots appeared on the horizon – police officers.
“Over here!” She yelled, hoping to be heard.
The lights came closer and closer until she saw a man and a woman in police uniform. As they reassured her, they dragged her out of of the car. Lucinda resisted, insisting that she didn’t want to leave her parents.
“Come on, sweetie.” Said the female officer, coaxing her out. Lucinda crawled out and the woman picked her up. “Okay, let’s go to the hospital now.” She said, smiling.
“No!” Lucinda wailed. “I don’t want to leave Mummy and Daddy!” She began to cry again as the officer carried her up the slope to their car and strapped her in.
After arriving at the hospital, still bawling her eyes out, Lucinda’s aunt, Mariam, picked her up. The funeral came and went with Lucinda knowing nothing about it. Mariam had decided that it would be too much for poor six-year old Lucinda.