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School Days « Fiction365

Today's Story by Shehnaz Khan

I am grotesque by comparison.

School Days

I was at the window, at the usual part of the day – sometime after 3, watching kids walk home from school. I had no reference point for feeling human – but I was drawn to these kids who got to walk in the daylight, free.

This day I see a girl my age, walking slowly home. I keep my eyes just above the window sill so I won’t be caught staring. She holds a book and binder against her chest and her feathered hair shines in the sunlight. A pretty shirt and a pair of bell-bottom slacks. I want this girl’s life so much, but a bridge to her side of the street is unfathomable. I am grotesque by comparison – trapped in this room, peering out the window, not allowed school or friends or nothing. I am not aware that a cry will come from me, loud enough to startle the girl across the street. She whips her head in my direction as I disappear under the window sill, in the shadow, where freaks live.

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Shehnaz Kahn lives in California and writes things that persistently buzz around her head. She loves magical realism.

Read other stories by Shehnaz Kahn

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