“And they think I’m crazy, but I’m not”, Leila thought aloud.
“Do you think mama’s crazy?” she turned to the little girl curled up on the bed. “huh”
The little girl shook her head, she was still playing unhindered, with her doll.
“That’s my baby”, Leila lovingly patted the little girl’s hair.
“Today, we’re going to see grandma, and I hear she’s making you a lovely sweater”. Anna, the little girl, looked up. She loved sweaters especially red ones.
“Is it red?” She asked, her eyes lightening up.
“Yes baby, it is. Now go get ready before we meet grandma”.
Leila was a bit apprehensive. After two years, she was finally going to visit her mother. But that wasn’t what bothered her. It was the thought of someone recognizing Anna as the girl that got missing two years back. She tried to shove the thought at the back of her mind.
“its been two years, the story must have died down by now”, she reassured herself. “Anyway, Anna’s changed, I doubt if even her parents would recognize her now”.
That was true, Anna had changed. She had grown a little taller and slimmer in those two years. Her hair was now a shade of burgundy red, which was a far cry from its original crimson brown- Thanks to hair dye. She laughed at that the thought of Anna’s parent, remembering the first time she saw them. It was still all too clear. Leila had saved Anna from what she believed to be a disastrous life. A life filled with money, little love and fights.
That afternoon 2 years ago, when Leila first caught a glimpse of Anna on her way back from the hospital, something clicked in her, she felt a connection with Anna. And then, seeing the couple argue and bicker with the situation taking a turn for the worse and little Anna trudging slowly behind, Leila felt she had to save her. And save her she did.
Leila opened her drug cabinet, and then, she decided against it.
“If I was crazy, as they say, will I be able to take care of a girl for two years”. She put back the pills into the cabinet.
“I’m going drug free to mama today.”
Anna knew Leila wasn’t her mother. But she also learnt a long time ago what happens when you go against leila’s statement. She was now 6 and hadn’t seen her parents for two years. She didn’t think she ever will. The first few months were the worst. She kicked and cried and threw tantrums asking for her parents. As it turned out, Leila hated tantrums and she made sure Anna knew that with some few harsh words and smacks.
After a while, Four year old Anna adjusted into the role of Leila’s daughter. She even started calling her Ma- that pleased Leila. Her little girl instinct realized that when Leila was happy, then she was safe. And that was it, Anna became the daughter Leila had always wanted.
“Anna, are you ready?”, Leila called out. Anna was ever so ready. She was tired of always being indoors.
“Yes ma”, Anna replied.
As they got into the car, Leila could feel her heart racing. Her head felt a bit woozy and her pulse was rapid.
“I should have taken the pills”, Leila murmured. And with that thought, she pressed the ignition and took off.
Want to know how it ends, and What happens to Anna? Then Part 3 is on its way. if you haven’t read the first part, its: here