Little Suzy

There she was sitting on the bench with her nanny, pointing at a dog with big ears. She looked very happy and excited. She loved dogs but her parents would never allow one in the house. Her father was allergic to all animals. She wanted to pet the dog but her nanny didn't let her walk all the way to where the dog was playing with his yellow ball. Her leg was in a casting. She had fractured her ankle running down a staircase at school. She was hurrying down to get to the car quick. It was the last of school and the happiest day of the year. Suzy hated waking early morning. Also, her grandmother was scheduled to come to the city. Grandma had promised to here on the first day of summer vacation and spend the whole month. Suzy loved having her grandma around. They'd tell each other stories, bake cakes and go to the zoo. Grandma's visits were always fun. Soon as she came home from the doctor's she started crying for her granny. She'd been brave the whole time Dr.P was bandaging her and giving her an injection. She had not cried once. But when she reached home and couldn’t find grandma, her veneer broke.

Her father was never home. He was always away at conventions and parties. Her mother's house was just as empty. Her parents had divorced when she was three. She stayed with daddy because mommy was always travelling and Suzy had school. Grandma filled this hole that was slowly turning into a chasm. She eased the pain that Suzy couldn't explain. Nanny was sweet and kind but Suzy knew that nanny liked her own children more. She had seen them. Dark and scrawny but they weren't allowed into her building. The watchman always turned them away when they came to call for their mother. She was jealous of dark and scrawny. Only, she didn't know what jealousy is. Grandma sent nanny home at noon which made her very happy. Suzy knew she was happy because she smiled a lot and talked loudly when she was happy. She was disappointed. She wanted granny to be with her but her flight had been canceled. Suzy cried herself to sleep. When she woke the next day, Granny was there. She almost ran into her arms, then she remembered her bandaged leg and beaming all over her little face held out her hands for granny. Grandma gave her a big hug, scooped up and carried her into the den. They kept chattering while granny unpacked. She'd bought Suzy a terrific box. It was a music box and whenever opened, a girl popped up and danced delightfully to the playing tune. Suzy loved it. She named the girl Alice.

Whole week long, granny and Suzy played checkers, went to the movies, cooked dinners together, built sand castles, threw pool parties for her friends, created balloon creatures and played hide and seek. She had ice cream every day. Grandma said it was nutritious. She loved grandma. Every night she snuggled up to granny and listened to incredible tales about fairies, elephants, princesses and rabbits. Peter rabbit was her favourite. She always fell asleep when peter rabbit was crossing the brook.

On Wednesday, granny had to meet a friend for lunch. She said she'd be home by six. Suzy wanted to go with her but granny didn’t. She arranged for nanny to take her to the beach for the evening.

This was when I saw her. In her blue frock. And the dog with the long ears and the yellow ball. I was smoking the last cigarette of my third carton. I was much stressed those days. Life didn't make sense. It was all i could do to not jump off the world trade tower. I was waiting for a friend. This girl I'd planned on getting drunk with. She was a stewardess. A real neat stewardess. I was waiting for her to show up. She was late.

Suzy loved dogs. She couldn't resist that damned dog with the stupid ears. She half ran and half dragged her leg across the lane. Her nanny was reading the goddamned newspaper. She didn't look up. Suzy loved dogs. She loved the goddamned dogs. She bent down. Right in the middle of the fucking street. Just like that. To pick up that horrid ball. The wretched animal had chucked it into the street. And just like that she bent down. In the middle of the street.
A blink and she vanished. I saw it happen. He ran her over. He didn't stop. He ran her over. She vanished, blue frock, yellow ball and all. She vanished. He didn't stop. She vanished.


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