Her house was a cottage very close to the lake. She ran out in tears and jumped into her tiny circular boat. She frantically rowed to the centre of the lake. Her parents knew her routine; they didn’t run out to find her. She rowed till she reached far away from the shore. She curled up in the bottom of the boat and weept. Sometimes she felt no one understood her. Isn’t that what teenage girls complain about? Their parents. She stayed at the bottom of the boat and began to hum a tune. At the same moment, a frog jumped into her boat. He sat at the edge of the boat, his eyes fixed on her.
“Are you okay?” he asked.
She didn’t reply. She was sure she had lost her mind.
“Are you okay?” he asked again. “Have I lost my mind? Fallen asleep?” she muttered. “No. I just talk. Is this your first time in this lake?” he replied. “No,” she said. “You were making a racket with your crying. I thought maybe if I checked up on you, you would quieten up. I prefer a peaceful environment really,” he snapped. “This is the only peaceful place for me,” she responded, shocked. “Then relax and don’t fill the air with your cries,” he said.
“You are a mean frog,” she screamed and turned away from him.
“All right. I am sorry. I am not on my best behaviour today. Wait, let me call Moose,” he said.
He made a series of sounds and from far away a duck appeared. “You called, Joseph,” he said.
“Yes. I am unable to get her to stop crying. Even my charming personna makes no difference,” he smirked.
“Charming? Don’t kid. You probably caused all the crying,” Moose responded. “Wow. You are truly a pocketful of happiness aren’t you?” Joseph replied.
“Wait. This can’t be right,” she said. “Oh yes. We forgot to introduce ourselves. I am Moose and this is Joseph. And you are?” Moose added.
“Laurie,” she replied, “And how can you talk?”
“We are gifted. Just like you. You can hear us right. Right now, anybody hearing this conversation can only hear croaks and noises. Of course, your English is flawless. Just like your skin,” Joseph perked in.
“Oh stop it. Don’t harass her,” Moose nudged.
“And only I can hear you?” she asked.
“A few of you. You humans just don’t listen carefully enough. It really is not so much of a gift or a talent for you. It is just good listening skills,” Joseph replied.
“You are completely obnoxious Joseph. Learn some manners,” Moose butted in.
“This is crazy,” Laurie muttered in the background. “It is getting late. I better go back,” she added.
“Tata lady,” Joseph said, “And maybe next time you can meet Mrs. Moose.”
“Oh shut up,” Moose snapped as they both vanished from the boat’s side.
She rowed quickly back to the house and was silent throughout dinner. Her mom asked her if she was still mad. But her thoughts were only on Joseph and Moose.
Will she meet them again?