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A I Kaymen: Aura Child

*** Click on the ISBN number to order this book.***

 

That night I lay on the floor of my sister’s bedroom, unable to sleep, staring at the Artex ceiling. At nine years old I was acutely aware of how little my sister enjoyed my company and how she put up barriers whenever I approached her. As a baby I had watched the cloudiness around her grow thicker until I could no longer see through it, and then I would cry.

My thoughts were rudely disturbed by a loud moo. Heart pounding, I leapt to my feet and silently scuttled downstairs to find a large cow standing in the hallway staring back at me. As I reached out to touch it, a man with heavy boots appeared.

“Here’s the one that got away,” he said to the cow, then to me: “Shouldn’t you be in bed? Whose child are you? Look like a gypsy.”

“Get lost!” I hissed defensively. 

“Genevieve Kelly, how dare you speak to me like that! And look at me while I’m shouting at you.”  

I turned round to find Mum glaring at me, hands on hips. The slivers of light from the streetlamps outside penetrated the patterned glass of our front door and illuminated random parts of her face. They made the furrows on her forehead appear deeper than they actually were.

“Mum? I wasn’t talking to you. It was him. That man.”

“Which man? Was there a man here?” asked Dad picking up the `phone. Mum trembled. She was enraged rather than scared.

“Yes, he had a cow with him.”

Dad slowly put the `phone back on the charger and looked over at Mum. She hadn’t taken her eyes off me. Suddenly, they both looked pale and frightened.

“Go to bed,” commanded Mum.

As I went upstairs I heard them whispering to each other and could just about make out what they were saying.

“It’s happened again, hasn’t it? We need to do something…”

“I think we need to take her to the doctor…”

“…before she gets older and it affects her life….”

“It isn’t normal, for God’s sake…”

I knew exactly what they were talking about. This had happened before when I was five years old. I’d burst into tears at our family Christmas dinner after seeing some emaciated, dirty children carrying heavy crates from one end of the room, through the wall and down the road. Every so often they were whacked by a bearded man with a stick and a pocket watch.

“They think I’m not normal,” I muttered to myself as I climbed back into the sleeping bag. “What’s normal anyway?”


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