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Little Soul Mates

by Richard Ong

A good friend of mine who worked as an early childhood instructor had this to say of a very interesting experience:

“I'd always thought that Tess and Miko were meant to be together. They were kids at the kindergarten school where I worked as a teacher. They played, laughed and ate lunch together every day since they’d met. Tess was a precocious five-year old whose dimples could bring out a smile on a dreary day.

“Miko was immediately drawn to the newcomer upon her arrival last Fall. On her first day he offered her a Popsicle. Tess smiled and accepted the treat. Her dimples peeked from under her cheeks. I tried not to notice and busied myself preparing for class. Since then the two were inseparable, or so I thought.

“One day, the week before Christmas, I had stepped out into the hallway for only a few minutes to talk to a child's mother in private when we were suddenly interrupted by a loud crash through the open door behind me. I heard some angry shouts coming from inside the room.

“I rushed back in and witnessed a chaotic scene of utter confusion. Twenty-two kids were spreading paint on the walls, drawing on the floor and chasing each other around the room.

“Amid the cacophony of tiny voices, I strained my ears to isolate one particular pair. Suddenly, I heard a slap and quickly turned towards the sound behind the teacher's desk. Miko's eyes were wet. His mouth was wide open. His hand touched his right cheek; an imprint of white scarred his olive skin.

“Tess walked briskly away from him. My hand reached out to stop her, but I hesitated when I saw her face. Her eyes were dry. Her mouth was pursed. Her dimples no longer showed on her cheeks. She passed me without looking.

“I turned to look back at Miko, and something caught my eye on the floor. A Barbie doll, Tess's favourite, was sprawled on the floor without its head. I looked up and stared at Miko, who was sobbing behind my desk.

“I sighed, shook my head and wondered how could I have been wrong about those two! My dear, dear two little soul mates...”

Copyright © 2020 by Richard Ong

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