Kaitlyn Reese

United States

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." - Philippians 4: 13

Message to Readers

Feel free to give this a peer review and thank you so much for reading!! I really appreciate each and everybody who takes the time!
Sorry, the story is a bit long...

My Lost Photos

November 18, 2019

The first picture I drew swam like a catfish in dark circular lines on my paper. I had to erase so much it left faint lines and small holes in the little box my teacher told me to color in. It was the hair that I drew on top of his head and the eyes I drew that was a shade I couldn’t produce with crayons; the closest I could find was a russet brown. Then I began to scribble vigorously, failing to notice my teacher, hovering above me.

“Stand up Astrid Dale,” Mrs. Francis flared her nose, beckoning me towards her. She was quite a pretty woman with a bob haircut and wire glasses frames rimming her eyes. She had such a perfect look I thought about drawing her, but when I looked down to grab my papers, they vanished.

“Miss Dale,” she whispered, “Now why aren’t you down on the floor reading?”

“I was finishing my drawing, Mrs. Francis,” I said and it was true.

No, you most certainly were not! You’re drawing a boy instead of addressing your writing prompt.” 

“Mrs. Francis,” I said, swallowing heavily. I eyed the board seeing the big letters glare at me from our whiteboard. We needed to write about something we lost but I always needed an excuse to avoid our daily writing. 

“It’s not important, child. I want you to sit!” 

Holding my breath, I looked down realizing I was the only one who kept working on my drawing. It didn’t take much to conclude that everybody else had returned to the floor that was strewn with geometric shapes just minutes ago. I joined them reluctantly, pulling the first book I saw with a small picture of a shark plastered on the cover. Riffling open the pages, I widened my eyes at the plethora of words that were so jumbled they looked like shapes. 

I sighed though wasn’t surprised - this wasn’t new to me. The scrambled words were my life. I’d open a book and my palms would turn red and it would seem as though each word began playing hide-and-seek, making my eyes wander until I’d realize I had been staring at the same page for ten minutes. This is why I always brought a pencil to accompany me. It was my only friend, my only artifact to grip onto. My only comfort in the big boisterous world. 

The second picture I drew was of myself, deciding to take make my so-called “beautiful” blue eyes into another masterpiece. My fingers were already caked with too much graphite so when I pressed down on the booklet, a permanent fingerprint branded it. I started with my dark brown hair that was the tentacles on a jellyfish, flowing and journeying down my shoulders and to my waist. With just the delicate movements of my hand, I angled the pencil onto its side so bits of powder smeared the paper. But I didn’t care. With a wipe of my finger, it was gone. The drawing was done. 

By this time, the students were staring at me, thinking I was crazy for sketching in a book. Their mouths were open like the jaws of the shark in the picture in front of me. 

“Mrs. Francis! Astrid has drawn in the shark book!

I immediately clenched up in fear. My legs contracted as I began to back into the closest corner while my teacher loomed over me, looking like a shadow with no light illuminating her face. Her cheeks flushed a ghastly white. 

“Miss Dale! You can make your way outside,” her voice wasn’t loud. It was barely a whisper that somehow scared me even more.  

I nodded.

“Until you’re willing to demonstrate good behavior towards your fellow classmates,” her stick-like finger made a line towards a lone bench just outside the classroom in the humid summer day. Craning my head, I began to walk. What was wrong with me? Was I left to sit outside because I was an outsider? Or did Mrs. Francis give me up just like everybody else had?

It was blurry when she walked away and began trotting over to the door, stopping at the wastebasket by her desk. With my vision in focus again, I realized that my paper was the only one that sat idly in the can with rotten food and old eraser shavings. 

My drawing, it was lonely, weeping in the basket.

“What is the fourth rule of the classroom?” Mrs. Francis said to me afar in a voice as pleasant as a rose.

Obey your teacher,” I recited for the second time this morning. I couldn’t read but memorized the sound of other students’ chorusing. 

“Exactly!” 

And though she stared at me like I was chewing a mouthful of trash, I didn’t take back my comparison of her to a rose. She had just as many thorns to make up for her pretty face. Without looking back, I slammed the door behind me, reaching down while grabbing a tiny piece of chalk before taking a seat on the bench. 

The third picture I drew was beneath the fifth graders’ backpacks hooks. It was of a couple, conjoined in a heart that had no endpoint with vines intertwining between their heels and sand beneath their toes. I began to etch their hair but to my dismay, the chalk turned into a stub before I could finish it. My fingers traced over the half-drawn body that I knew would be trampled upon once the bell began blaring. It was a matter of minutes. A matter of seconds until my third drawing would be ruined just like my life. 

Still, while I was baking in the heat, I didn’t know what I did wrong. Mrs. Francis said to describe something we had lost and that was precisely what I drew. 

I drew my parents, my brother, and a little bit of myself. 

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4 Comments
  • Anne Blackwood

    THIS IS STUNNING ACK. Every part of it felt so beautiful and original. Your writing felt like it belonged next to the greats because it was so original. The voice of this piece felt like it belonged to one person and that any impersonations would be cold and lifeless imitations.


    about 2 years ago
  • JakeFrommStateFarm

    Wow, this is really good! You should enter this in the contest I'm hosting!


    about 2 years ago
  • hi i'm jackson ;)

    OH MY GOSH THE ENDING


    about 2 years ago
  • HermioneGranger67

    This is a great story! The description of the drawing process is beautifully written!


    about 2 years ago