I Can Handle It

I Can Handle It

As dusk settled in, the people stopped opening their car windows, due to the cold.

Slowly, the chill started creeping to my bones. It made me shiver and my teeth chatter. But I was used to it. I was almost immune to the cold. Still, I wanted to get to my home as soon as possible. Holding my balloons tight, I weaved my way through the cars.

“I can handle it.” I thought to myself.

After passing the red light, I made a run across the road, since I didn’t want to wait for the cars to pass. I could see faces twinged with sympathy, shame, and disgust through the windshields of the cars.That just urged me on.

“I can handle it.”

After a few lanes, I arrived at the U-Turn, where a few rugs were laid. The metro bridge was our only shelter. After tying my balloons to a pillar, I sat next to my mother,who, with her bony arms and pale skin, gave her rug to me and wrapped another around my baby brother. My father returned at the very moment, and he had nothing to show. We all knew what this meant. No food today.

“I can handle it.”

To keep myself distracted, I started playing with the dirt. I made a ball out of it, and kept on throwing it in the air and catching it. I tried to throw it really high, but it went at the wrong angle and landed on a fancy car. The moment it touched the car, two teenagers came out. They saw the dirt and me, putting two and two together. Then they approached me.

“I can handle it.”

“You piece of scum! How dare you throw dirt on my car?” Said the first one.

“This car is worth more than your life, you dirty rascal!” Bellowed the second.

“Please, leave us.” My father raised his hands, but they shoved him aside.

And exactly then, the second one kicked me. Right in the gut. The wind was knocked out of me. Then the first punched my nose, and I could feel a few drops of blood trickle down.

“I can handle it. I’m not new to this world.”

“Next time, it’ll be worse!” They both shouted, and went back . Just like that.

My mother looked at my wounds, but there was nothing she could do. I took a leaf from a nearby plant and held it up to my nose, so that the bleeding would stop. My mother took one of the three rugs bundling up my baby brother, and gave it to me. As soon as she did that, my brother started crying. It was a nightly ritual these days, as it was so cold. 

“I can handle it all, will he be able to? He’s just a newbie to life!”


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