Life's Magic Chapter 7

6 Mitch

"I'm fine." She giggled.

"Oh my God, Dilly! Why'd you ran off like that!"

When I looked up, there was a woman, a little bit old and plump, holding a melting ice cream in one hand and a tote in the other. Her hair was a mess. Her clothes, too, have been worse to wear. She looked harassed.

"Hi. I'm sorry if I almost run over Donatella. We need to see if she didn't hurt herself."

"I told you I'm fine. You didn't reach me with your bike. I just fell on my rear." Donatella smoothed her yellow dress down with her tiny hands and offered me a wide smile. "This is my sitter, Fatima. Fatima, this is Mitch our neighbor."

"Hi." The older lady waved a hand with an ice cream in it.

"Hello. Where's Mr. and Mrs. Caldwell?"

"Vacation." Donatella answered with a frown.

I looked at the sitter for confirmation but she seemed reluctant to tell. When I didn't release her gaze, she eventually gave in.

"Er... They're in the city to look for... uh... a person to..." Her eyes kept flickering to Donatella and me back and forth. "to administer Mrs. Caldwell's chemotherapy."

"Yes! Yes, that's where they always go for a vacation. Chemocity!" It was Donatella again.

"Oh." Was all I could say through the lump that formed in my throat and my heart melted for the little girl. "How long will they be away?"

"They'll be back in the evening as what Mr. Caldwell said."

"Mitch! Come, let's play!" Donatella took my hand and pulled me towards the swing.

"Would you mind if I'll just go wash off this mess and I'll be right back?" The sitter asked.

"It's fine. Go ahead." I grabbed Donatella by the waist and perched her up on the seat of the swing before taking the other swing at her right. "Where's Jess?"

Her eyes widened as if realizing her bunny wasn't with her. "We left him! Oh no, he must be lonely back at the house." She jumped off of the swing that I quickly stood to catch her in case she falls.

"Careful there!" After helping her steady, I returned to my seat on the swing and resumed staring at her. She's that interestingly wonderful to look at. "I'm sure Jess will be fine. He's a grown up guy. He'll find ways to entertain himself."

Donatella looked up to me as if assessing my words before she showed her toothy grin. "Yes, you're right. I'm sure he'll be fine." She stepped closer and put her hands on my knees. "Your eyes are really, really pretty."

"You have a beautiful pair of eyes, too. It makes me think of the jungle..." I suddenly stopped when I remembered I shouldn't be telling anyone else about the secret cabin.

Her attention was caught by some children laughing at the other side of the park. It made me blew a relieved sigh because I knew she'd probe me of what I meant about the jungle.

"I want to be your friend, Mitch. Because I don't have any friends." Her lips quivered, eyes shimmering with unshed tears. "Maybe because we keep going to vacation." She cried so easily I noticed when a lone tear escaped the corner of her eye. "We always go somewhere."

"I'd like that. I brushed away the tears and smiled down at her. "I have no friends, too." It's the only answer I knew would lift her spirits up.

Her smile returned before thrusting her chubby hand to me, pinky finger stuck out from her fist. "Pinky swear?"

"Pinky swear." I twined our pinkies together, chuckling at the same time how childish it felt.

It was too late when I realized what she was about to do as I looked at her. Her dirty mouth landed wetly as she smacked them to my lips. I moved away only to fall out of the swing with my butt hitting the ground first. She giggled while staring at me.

"Why did you do that?" I sat straight on the ground before wiping my mouth with the back of my hand and glared at her.

"Because we're friends. We pinky swear, we kiss as well. That's what mom taught me."

"No, I don't think so." My heart felt like exploding. What's wrong with me?

"Hey, are you alright, Mitch?" The sitter finally arrived to my relief.
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