Birds of a Feather Flock Together by Eshanie WH
“Donny…are you okay?” Anya’s concerned gaze burned through Donny’s back. He scoffs and turns to look at his older sister. “Of course, I’m okay, Anya. How can you even ask that? Our sister just left us, just like Dad!” His dark brown eyes glare harshly at Anya, who flinches, her bright, brown eyes moving to the floor. “And who gave her the right to take our baby brother like that anyway?!” He continued. “She promised us she would protect us! I can’t believe she left us to deal with Mom.” Anya sighs and makes her way towards her hurt brother. She wraps her arms around him tight, whispering in his ear. “I know you’re hurt. But I’m hurt too. You know Adam and Anastelle will be too.” Donny starts sobbing as he squeezes his sister. “But we need to be strong for them, okay? especially for Anastelle. She was closest to her.”
Anya lets go to wipe Donny’s tears away. “The only thing we can do is move forward. As your older sister, I have to make sure you guys are alright.” Donny smiles wistfully then moves out of his room. As he walks down the hall, he hears faint footsteps. He looks back to see his adorable five-year-old sister, Anastelle, running towards him. “Hey, there sweetie!” Donny grins and bends down to pick her up. She giggles and brushes her lengthy russet hair out of her face. “Donny, Where isth Annie? I didn’ see her yesterday!” Anastelle pouts and throws her stubby arms around her favorite brother (she would never say that in front of Adam though). Donny sighs and looks away. “Annabelle…left for a little while, ‘Stelle.” Donny makes his way downstairs. “Wher did she go? Th’ Stwor?” Donny ignores her and notices Adam in his usual spot, the music room, to the far left of the living room. Adam, Annabelle, and Anastelle loved music. Donny knocks on the open door twice, startling his younger brother, “We need to talk, Adam.” He sees Anya creep up behind him. “It’s very important we do so. Mother won’t be back for a few days, but we need to talk about this. Now.” Adam’s bright blue eyes widened, and he makes his way into the living room, Donny and Anya in tow. Anastelle sits on Donny’s hip, lips pursed in confusion. Anya sighs and looks at her uneasy siblings. “There’s no easy way to say this, so I’ll make it quick.” Anya closes her eyes. “Annabelle left early this morning with Austin. I don’t where she went, but I know she’s not coming back.” She pulls out a piece of paper from her pants pocket. “She…left this note.”
Slightly frowning, Anya begins reading. “My dear siblings, I know that as your oldest sister, it is my duty and obligation to protect you. Ever since Father left, Mother has been an emotional wreck, to say the least. I tried to protect you in the best way possible, but no one will get anywhere just by avoiding Mother’s wrath. I know it wasn’t enough and I’m sorry. Please forgive me. I am leaving Sunday at dawn with Austin. If I had the choice, I would bring every single one of you with me. Please take care of each other.” Adam and Donny start tearing up. “I can’t tell you where I’m going, or if I’m coming back. Just know that I love you, I always have and always will.” Anya scowls and snarls out the end of the letter. “She…really left us.” Adam sinks into the couch next to Donny. Anastelle, not understanding the situation, falls asleep on Donny. Anya fights back her tears and sits between her brothers. They simultaneously threw their arms around her, Anastelle tiredly got up to sleep in another chair. The three siblings tightly embrace each other, quietly sobbing. Why does it have to be this way? Anya somberly ponders, tears rushing down her face.