To read the story from the start go to: https://the-inkling.com/catch-up-with-the-inklings/
On Saturday morning Fanta was stirring her cup of tea when she noticed that her hand was shaking. She realised that she was feeling anxious about meeting John’s sister Emily that evening. Fanta had the impression that John’s family had high standards and was worried that they wouldn’t like her, or at least they wouldn’t like that she came from such a broken family. Fanta’s worry showed on her face as a frown and when John and D’arby noticed they thought Fanta must be cranky with something they’d done so they offered to clean the house while she did whatever she liked.
Fanta went out to the backyard to escape the noise of the vacuum cleaner. She sat in the shade and realised she missed her parents. Fanta wondered where her mother was and realised that she hadn’t seen her for almost nine years. Before she realised what she was doing she was remembering the day her Mum left.
Fanta didn’t realize anything was wrong at first. The house looked pretty normal. Nancy and Ruby were both in their playpen in the lounge room and the radio was on. Fanta could smell her mother’s perfume and thought she must be around somewhere, but she wasn’t anywhere in the house. While looking for her mother Fanta realized that there were lots of things missing from the house. It wasn’t until Fanta went to her mother’s room and found that most of her clothes were gone that she realized she had left them. Next Fanta went to the kitchen because that was where the phone was and Fanta thought she better call someone to ask for help. That was when she found the letter on the kitchen bench.
I have gone travelling with Ben and I don’t know when I will be back. Your aunt is coming tomorrow to take you and your sisters to live with her. You have to go with her because I have sold the house.
I know you will take good care of your sisters. I will see you when I get back.
Fanta still remembered what she’d felt like that day,and it made her start crying. She remembered how her aunt had told her that her mum would be back in 6 months so Fanta had counted down the days, but her mum never came back. Fanta had gone through periods of hating her mum and hating her mum’s boyfriend Ben (she’d even made voodoo dolls of Ben) but what she still really wanted was for her mum to come back. Fanta knew her aunt was in contact with her mum but her aunt would never tell her anything about her or where she was, except that she was ok.
Fanta wiped her eyes and mentally rehearsed answers to the question that she expected Emily would ask that evening – the same question everyone asked when they found out that Fanta looked after her sisters: “What happened to your parents?”
On Saturday afternoon Fanta packed a suitcase to take to Emily’s place and tried to get her sisters to choose what they wanted to pack but they were too excited.
The sun was still hot when they set out for Emily’s place. Nancy insisted on pulling the suitcase along as they walked to the train station. After a train trip they caught a bus that took them to the end of Emily’s street. By the time they arrived the sun had dropped behind the houses, and the warm colour of the sunlight made the houses in the street look even more impressive. Ruby and Nancy were amazed by the tall street trees and beautiful gardens. One garden had a large sprinkler going that overshot the garden and wet the footpath. Fanta’s sisters screamed as they ran back and forth the section of footpath, and didn’t stop until their hair was dripping wet, despite Fanta pleading with them to stay respectable.