Wednesday, December 16, 2015

The Starriest Summer by Adelle Yeung

“My brother was always the brains in the family,” I tell him.  “He knew he wanted to work for NASA when he was seven.  Crazy.  But he knew what he wanted and he knew how to get there.  He’s still not there yet, but he’s working hard.  My parents were so proud of him, always bragging about his first-place science fair projects to our relatives at holidays.  And then there’s me.”  I have to take a deep breath.
“I’m not as smart as him,” I continue.  “I don’t even know what I want to do with my life.  I like to draw and write and make things and play video games, but I’m not especially good at anything.  I’ve never said it to anyone—not to my brother or even my friends—especially not my parents—but I feel like…”  My throat tightens, and I choke out on a sob, “A waste of space.”
“You’re not,” Jayse says, patting my back.  “I’m sure if they could see you now, they would be proud of what you’re doing.”
I shake my head.  “They wouldn’t know who I am!  They don’t know me.  They just see me as a girl who likes to play video games.  I don’t tell them about the other things I do, because they stopped caring.  If they saw me here, all they’d say is, ‘Why does this girl look like our daughter?’”  I hide my ugly, crying face behind my arms now.  “I really miss my brother!  He’d say, ‘It’s okay!  You can live with me once I get a job, but you have to cook for yourself!’  Why wasn’t I nicer to him?”

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