lonely monsters

Simple Pleasures

The following was inspired by the prompt, Lonely Monsters, and is by Writers in the Grove member, Kirsten Baggins.

The ice cream drips down onto the pavement, but he doesn’t seem to mind as he laps at the scoops, a big happy smile on his face as he looks up at the sky, smiling at the sun I’ve had to teach him not to stare at it specifically, but he stills likes to look up and bask in its warmth. Heat seems so foreign to him, what with him being so cold and undead.

With his free hand, he picks me up and places me on his shoulder, careful not to make me spill my own treat, before we head down the city sidewalk. On a nearby corner, a man is strumming away at his guitar for tips, and my friend approaches, bobbing his head cheerfully to the tune-music always gets his attention, and he’ll follow it wherever it goes. The guitarist freezes upon seeing his audience, stopping his playing with fear, only for my friend to say, “Play.”

“What do we say?” I ask.

“Please.”

The guitarist nervously continues, while I fish out some bills for my friend to put in the guitar case. He makes a happy sound when he does, saying to the performer, ‘Music good.’ The man merely gives a nervous smile and nods in agreement, and I smile to him as he keeps playing, and we move down the sidewalk.

As we continue down the street, I ask from my perch, “Do you want to go to the bookstore?”

Reading is a great joy for my friend – he can’t quite do it himself yet, so in my teaching him to talk, I teach him to read as well. He’s yet to meet a book he doesn’t like: Fairy tales, short stories, poems, any genre, all of them he’s loved very, very much

At my questioning, he nods and makes another happy noise, telling me, “Yes, friend.”

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