“Bill dear… I think you are imagining things… ants don’t live in cities. They are just this uncivilized creatures. Now stop all these nonsense and go do your homework.” said Mom.“All right. But, I’ll show you that on one fine day. Then you’ll realize it”
He ran up the stairs and to his room. He slammed his door, plopped himself onto his bed and started crying. Nobody understood him. They thought that he was a normal 7 year old cry-baby and nothing else.“Am not a baby and I won’t let any of my cousins to treat me like that when they come home tomorrow.” He swore to himself.The next day:
“Bill! Wake up! Wake up! Your cousins and aunt and uncles are here!!”
Mom sounded excited. I quickly slipped down the bed, rushed to the rest-room, finished with everything and slipped onto my best clothes and hurried down the stairs. When I stepped on the last one, I tried to act casually and I welcomed my family with a huge grin. This all happened before one of them called him a ‘newly woken baby’.
Anger welled up inside Bill.
“WHAT DID YOU CALL ME??” asked an enraged Bill.
The cousin seemed to back off a bit. But then, he turned against and asked “You dare to speak against an elder person??” he asked.
Bill felt ashamed. He felt hot tears running down his cheeks.
“See what I mean?? A total cry baby. That is who you are.”
Bill ran out of the house. Then he heard one of his cousins follow him. This made him run faster. Then finally, he reached the park. He twirled around to see his eldest cousin sister smiling at him with gentleness in her eyes.
Then, she said;
“No, you aren’t a crybaby according to me. Just a funky little explorer who found the ant city or whatever you want to call it.” Her voice was filled with kindness.
“All of them call me a crybaby. But I’m not one!!” he yelled.
Next, he dumped her with new problems for which she came up with solutions. Finally she said “All right. Now, tell me the hiding place of your ant city.”
Bill seemed dumbstruck. He collected himself and asked “You… believe… me?” he stammered.
“Okay… come with me.”
He led her to a narrow path. Then took a sudden swerve to the right, then the left. Then he reached ant city. The place which everyone thought was his imagination. His sister gasped and then exclaimed “So, it’s indeed real!”
“That’s what I tried explaining everyone. But, nobody believed me.”
“I see. Now what?? Shall we run home and tell our family? ”asked my cousin. Her name is Isabella.
“Nope. I don’t want them to know.”
A smile escaped my face. “Are we in shortage of Okays? I asked.
“Nope. Okay, kid, your mom asked me to watch over you. Now, I think it’s time for dinner.”
She steered me away to my home.
Now, that I’m 20, I remember the ant city. It was actually an abandoned child exhibition in which ants had started streaming in. My sister [Isabella] is now leading a kids’ school which is of a great use in the neighborhood. I will always cherish with her gentleness which nobody else had bothered to show me.