Espoir: A Tale of Sugar, Silence, and Secrets (part seven)

Gail Marlene Schwartz, Gail Writes Copywriting Editing

December 22, 2016

He told her his name was Pawnald and that he was a twin. His brother, Brawnald, was a corrupt prince in a neighboring land, keeping the rest of the kingdom’s inhabitants in rags with only rice and beans for food and litterboxes for bathrooms (the cats were entitled to toilets). Pawnald had been the sensitive of the two brothers, and he had paid dearly for it. His stomach was frequently upset while at school, and classmates mocked him for his frequent vomiting. They laughed at him while he ate, waiting and watching. They taunted him at recess, shouting “Botulism Breath!” Brawnald, instead of standing up for his smaller and weaker brother, was complicit in the mocking. Pawnald felt envy towards his brother, longing for the kind of pride and acceptance the bigger twin received from his parents and his peers, but he also recognized brutality and injustice and vowed he would always work for the good of all people, especially those with less power.

Before the crash, he had been flying out to a distant village where the people were dying because of a malaria plague. He had a cage full of bats that he had picked up on sale at the pet store which he would release into the air in hopes that they would take care of the mosquito problem. The bats, unfortunately, had perished in the accident.

As Autumn listened to Pawnald’s stories, his head in her lap by the fire, she felt a sense of inevitability, of the universe working in strange ways that only at that very moment made sense. At one point he looked up into her chalky-green eyes and she thought, they had each lost their community, but now had found each other. She leaned down and kissed his ear.

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