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THE FROG

by Alena Fée 2 years ago in fantasy
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Leaving the past behind

Usually, I begin the day without much excitement. It’s difficult to be an optimist with so much behind you, and so many regrets.

The small windowless room on the fourth floor did not look official. Filled to the brink with old books and magazines, and workers perched atop one another, it only made you want to run away.

I limply slumped into the armchair and turned on the computer. The ancient PC whirred and grumbled, and I settled down for the five-minute wait, to see if it would respond at last. This repeated every morning, implanting in me a small hope that one day it would finally die and I would be able to quit the hateful job. But alas, the screen lit up and on it, a frog in a crown appeared. That’s me. Rather, I dreamed it was me. I wanted to turn one day from a frog into a beautiful princess, snag myself a prince and gallop far away…. Yep, I am a frog, frog without a crown.

At five, everyone in the office stood up and dissolved into their cars. I plodded along towards the bus stop. It was drizzly and dark. A lamppost - 13 - illuminated a puddle. Sitting under the plastic awning, I peered into the darkness, wondering when my bus would come. Suddenly, something small jumped on my boot. Imagine that—it was a frog! Just like the one from my computer screen. It sat there, blinking at me with its large, yellow eyes. I pulled out my hand and she clambered up my sleeve to the shoulder, where she rode all the way home.

The old empty fish tank proved useful. The frog sat in the water and murmured softly.

“Well, what can you do?” I said, not understanding what that was supposed to mean, “Things happen…”

In the morning, the sun played with the shade all around the room. My frog studied herself in the mirror. I blew her a kiss, grabbed a cup of coffee and ran off to work. The room on the fourth floor seemed more spacious, and it was as if some of the clutter had disappeared. The day ended quickly. I flew home, full of excitement. And she was waiting for me. She croaked loudly and jumped around the aquarium joyfully. She missed me! Falling asleep, I blew her another kiss.

I waited for the weekend so that I could take my frog to the park. The weather was marvelous, I held her in a glass jar and looked around proudly—there she is, my beauty. No matter that nobody paid any attention. After all, I wasn’t alone.

“Did you go get made over?” my colleague asked me at work.

“Why?”

“You look like a princess.”

“No, I have a frog.” I responded.

She snorted and turned away.

Each day, I brought home something for her. In a nearby pet, store I bought her African flies. She also liked seaweed and yellow flowers. We spent hours chatting at night about nothing in particular. I smiled and she croaked.

One day I will never forget. It was cold and my bus was late. “Maybe there was an accident somewhere” I mused, drawing in the puddle absent-mindedly with my boot. My reflection disappeared and appeared, and it felt like I was waiting forever. The granny sitting next to me was involuntarily shaking her head and explaining something to me, and I, coming out of my own thoughts, caught just the last snippet, “They say that in life, you have to wait for the right person, and then you’ll be happy. Well, I think mine was hit by a car...” I laughed and in my thoughts returned to my frog: how is she, my lovely?

Not waiting for the elevator, I ran up to the seventh floor. My frog, leaning against the yellow flower and breathing heavily, was lying down with her eyes closed. Grabbing her by the hands I kept telling her, “I’m here, my dear, look at me, my angel. Why don’t you open your eyes...” Trying not to break into tears I continued, “How about we drive out to the flower fields this weekend? We can hop around, hide in the grass...” Her eyes opened widely, as if she wanted to tell me something, and looking at me for the last time, she died.

The whole world collapsed to the size of the office, and I couldn’t even cry from grief. Just stared dumbly at the empty wall in front of me, and sat there until morning, holding the lifeless, darkened body in my hands. In the morning, the sun bunny kissed me on the cheek, and listlessly I put my frog into the box, looked at the empty aquarium and realized that there was nobody there to blow a kiss to.

The office silently clicked away at the keys and I flipped through old reports. Sinking into the chair and pressing start, I studied my hands in pointless anticipation, those same hands that held her all night long. Surprisingly, my computer didn’t start. It happened finally! I stood up quietly and walked out. Meandering aimlessly, I found myself by a lake. Suddenly, I heard her croaking! Hundreds of voices! Sitting down on the wet grass, I listened to these sounds as if they were a divine symphony, and joy slowly flooded my heart. I didn’t know what would happen when they stopped singing, but I felt good. Did I ever feel good?

fantasy

About the author

Alena Fée

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