— Nayeon Kwon (Nancy) Y11 Mulchat —
7th Oct. 2016.
I tried to protest. I tried to run away. I tried to save myself. None of it worked. My purity and sanity vanished simultaneously. I had nothing left to live for. I had nothing left to mourn for. All that was left was emptiness. All that was left for me was the desire to see my mother.
I yearned for her. Although everyone told me that she was the one who abandoned me, she was also the only one who could ever retain my stability. This new fear that engraved me had more effect, a stronger pureness that enraged me. This made me helpless, completely out of my mind. I couldn’t care less about the world. All I wanted was to go back to my mother. Mom. Where are you?
The next day, I asked my caretaker about my mother’s location. The caretaker seemed surprised, seeing me talk for the first time. She stared blankly at me for a moment, then stuttered out a few words.
“Oh… I never knew that you… could talk….”
She then somehow burst into tears. I stared at her motionlessly. After sobbing for a good ten minutes, she then told me that she would show me where my mother was. She prepared me by putting a thick black coat over to keep me warm. The winter air was cold and bitter. I lagged behind as the caretaker dragged me to the car. I felt strangely uncomfortable. She began chatting.
“Now that you are talking, my dear, what is your actual name?” We’ve been calling you merry as you never told us. I’ve been so worried about you! Oh, well. Do you know about……”
She kept going on. I didn’t want to tell her the name my mother gave me – in a way I felt sacred – so I ignored her and looked outside the window. Rain began to fall. It splattered against the car window, blurring my view. I wondered where we were going.
“Excuse me. Where are we going?”
For once, she didn’t look back at me. Although I looked at her by the rear-view mirror, she evaded my glance. When I kept on staring at her, she finally resigned and sighed.
“Merry… Oh, you’ll get to know.”
That was all she told me. She kept on driving without a word. I simply sat wondering.
The car screeched and we finally arrived. No names were written on the side of the grey building. There were simply nothing there. Unable find any clue about that place, I got out of the car. The caretaker called after me.
“Ummm… Merry! Stop for a moment. I need to tell you about one thing.”
I listened to her, then I stopped and stared at her. Her face contorted and she bit into her lips. After mustering her courage, she finally said:
“Whatever you see in there, please be calm. Don’t blame yourself. Don’t be worried about anything. Please. I want you to be happy.”
For a moment I thought that I saw the expression of my mother in her face. I nodded and headed straight into the building. As I burst through the doors, a lady stopped me.
“Hello, little girl. Who are you looking for?”
“I’m looking for my mom.”
“What is her name?”
“Umm…. Sarah Minchin.”
She looked through the chart on her computer screen and found the place.
“Please. Follow me.”
Following her, I looked around the corridor. All the floors, doors, and even the whole ceiling was pure white. No footsteps seemed to be left on the whiteness of the floor, except for mine. As I turned back all I saw was my dirty brown footprints stamped neatly on the milky-white floor. It felt like a sin, so I took my shoes off and held them with my hands as I walked on. No more traces were left behind.
We arrived in front of a door. Again, pure white. It had a number written in black. 407. What did that mean? I turned questioningly towards the lady. She smiled and held me by the shoulders.
“Why don’t you go in now?”
Her smile seemed plastic and man-made. So robotic and unchanging, as if she had made the same facial expression for thousands of people. It seemed… so fake and full of lies, yet because I wished to see my mother so dearly, I opened the door.