A Maximum Ride Short Story

By Fluffy Bunnies Are So Cute

Jeanne sits on the stool, tugging on one of her braids and twirling a lollipop in her mouth with her tongue. The sharp prick of the needle from a syringe pierces the skin near her elbow that is strapped down to a metal table beside her, but other than a slight flinch, she continues to suck on the sweet in her mouth with conviction.

Cold fluid is injected into her skin, and then the assistant pulls the needle away, to set it down on a tray and produce yet another syringe full of a different medication.

He promised her that by the time she finishes sucking the lollipop in her mouth, the injections would be over. But if she bites it, she would be no more. And as Jeanne stares at her lap, covered by a dirtied yellow dress, she doesn't know whether she should suck faster to end the tests sooner, or savor the juicy watermelon taste that explodes in her mouth.

The needle comes out, a new one comes in.

Her arm is getting sore, but she promised her mama that she would do this. Mama was the only one she had left; Papa and her four older brothers had gone away to Heaven, and although she tried to deny it, Jeanne knows her mama will soon join them.

And then she would be the only one left.

That was why Mama had signed her up for these injections; she thought maybe, just maybe, if her daughter was able to heal herself, then she could live on. And Jeanne had promised to do what she asked.

But now, as yet another syringe full of medicine invades her bloodstream, and the lollipop grows smaller and smaller, she wishes she hadn't promised Mama.

She wishes she could simply join Papa, and Anton, and Christophe, and Emile, and Henri, and later, Mama, up there, rather than living dead on Earth.

She wishes that they had enough to eat, enough money to keep Mama well and alive.

She wishes that her arm would quit acting as a probe-ground for the numerous doctors and assistants that had visited her.

She wishes that she had bitten the lollipop before it dissolved.

I got a tad bit upset when I found they didn't list Jeanne as a character...