“They told me I wasn’t plain.”
Eliza sighed; she’d been waiting for this day to come; only she never thought it would happen so soon. Abbey was still so young.
She got down on her knees so they were eye-level. “Don’t listen to them; sometimes people are just mean.”
Abbey nodded tentatively. Even if she didn’t understand, she’d heard truth in her mother’s words.
“They said that you weren’t plain either, not anymore-what did they mean by that?”
Eliza’s face went crimson. She always knew she’d regret not moving when she’d had the chance.
“It’s about me, baby, not you,” Eliza whispered and Abbey nodded at that, too.
After a few seconds of silence, Eliza pulled herself up and went back to the counter and the sandwiches she’d been making.
Abbey stayed planted where she was, and looking down at the floor, asked one last question:“What does it mean to be a bastard?”
*A special thank you to Arlee Bird to setting this up and continuing to do so year after year.