Extra lessons extended till 4:30 pm that unlucky day and Layla couldn’t wait to get into the air conditioned car of her mother after school. The sun was a hot 42 degrees and Layla had been in school since 7 am. She was beginning to think middle school was not fun at all. The two pieces of sandwich she had packed for lunch was already soggy and sweating by the time it was lunch break. A sip of the water in her water bottle and she decided it was time to get a proper water flask.
“Clink” clink” “clink” the school bell ringer signaled school was over, and without realizing the English tutor standing beside her seat partner, Layla gave an excited scream with her hands outstretched above her head, “Yes!!”.
The teacher whose eyes were now staring deep into Layla’s soul said briefly- “excuse me?”
It wasn’t a question. The rest of the classmates stifled their laughter as Layla mumbled an apology- “I’m sorry Ma”. It seemed even the teacher had a long day because Layla was left with a mere warning.
School bag on her back and lunch pack in hand, Layla ran along the filled hallway, her ponytail swaying behind her. She was never happier to be a few feet tall than at that very moment. Like a mouse scurrying about in a kitchen store, she made her way to the main school gate, unhindered by the 300 and something large sized humans that had filled up the hall.
A bit of color drained from her face after she realized that her mother’s car was absent from the dozens packed in the school driveway. “Oh well, maybe mum’s just running a little late” thought Layla as she sat down on the pavement, not Intending to take her eyes off the cars coming into the drive way.
One after the other, Layla waved her classmates goodbye as they got into their parents cars and the school bus. Occasionally, someone made a comment about how come she hadn’t gone home yet. Layla would swallow the insult that was regurgitating up her throat and would reply- “my mum’s just running a little late.”
It was 6:30 pm and Layla had been offered twice, a bed In the school girl’s hostel by the matron who felt pity after passing by and hearing a rumble from Layla’s stomach. But Layla was obstinate, and insisted that her mother was just “running a little late”. She even refused food offered to her by the matron, adding she would eat when she got home.
Layla was hungry, tired and drained after waiting for almost two and the half hours. She was beginning to consider the matron’s offer for food, she heard a familiar horn. Heart racing, she got up and looked down the end of the driveway in time to see a blue Toyota E making a swift turn and racing towards where Layla was rooted.
The car stopped and the a curvaceous lady wearing a floral gown and a head scarf hurried out the driver’s side.
The lady rushed towards Layla, swarming her In a tight but frenzied hug. She began
“Baby, I’m so sorry … I …” but was interrupted by Layla who spoke
“Mom, it’s okay. I just want to go home”.
She gave Layla a quick kiss on the forehead and they made their way towards,the car. Layla got in first and then her mother. The first blow of the A.C breeze across Layla’s face and the color which had previously drained from her cheeks began to appear.
Layla was now looking forward to the taste of food in her mouth, the warmth of her bed… And all was right in her world.
In response to the Daily prompt: Write a post about any topic you wish, but make sure it ends with “And all was right in the world.”