Sara opened her eyes, slightly startled from her sleep. She glanced at the alarm clock on the dresser then at her little sister’s bed. Naomi was sitting up at the foot of her bed, her face buried in her little teddy bear’s soft fur, her body shaking with sobs.
“Naomi, what’s the matter? What are you doing up at six in the morning?”
Naomi didn’t answer. Sara got out of bed and went to Naomi’s side. Noticing the yellow stain on Naomi’s sheets, she put her arms around her trembling six year old sister.
“Oh darling, Naomi did you have another nightmare?”
Naomi nodded against Sara’s chest, “I’m w-wet and s-so cold S-Sara.” Naomi sobbed as she looked up at Sara’s kind face.
“I know honey, come, let’s get you cleaned up.” Sara took Naomi’s small hand in her own and together they walked to the bathroom.
After Naomi’s warm bath, Sara and Naomi made their way to the kitchen. They could smell the freshly brewed coffee along with the sizzling bacon and eggs before they entered the kitchen.
Both girls walked to the table and took their usual places, Sara on her father’s right and Naomi across from her on her mother’s right, next to baby Moses of course.
Everyone ate their breakfast in silence, with the exception of baby Moses who was cooing at the plastic fork in his hand. Father, who had currently been reading the newspaper pu ti down and posed a question to the girls.
“Sara, Naomi, how would you girls like to have a dog? To share of course.”
Sarah looked at her father, then at Naomi. She was about to say yes when she noticed a look of absolute terror come over Naomi.
Naomi, whose face by now was white as a sheet looked at her little brother, then at her father.
“Noooo, Daddy we can’t.” Naomi cried.
“Now sweetheart, why not?” Mother asked clearly confused with the situation. “I thought you girls wanted a dog.” Father nodded in agreement.
Naomi got up “Well I don’t,” she wailed “and neither does baby Moses.” With that she ran into the girls’ bedroom and slammed the door, leaving behind utter silence.
Father looked at Sara, “Honey, you have a way with Naomi, will you go see what’s wrong please.”
Sara nodded “Yes Father.” and made her way to their bedroom. She opened the door and headed for the closet. There in the back corner, Sara found Naomi once again sobbing into her teddy bear.
Sara got on her knees and crawled in beside Naomi.
“Naomi, does this have anything to do with your nightmare?”
Naomi swallowed back a sob. “I had a dream we had a big mean dog and it talked. It even had big claws like a witch. He was nice and pretty at first but then it got jealous of baby Moses. It always said ‘I love you’ to me but it kept hurting baby Moses.”
Sara put her arms around Naomi, she didn’t know what to say, she’d wanted a dog since she was seven. Now at fourteen the chance had arrived, but she knew, for Naomi’s sake it couldn’t happen.
In that moment, Sara had an idea. “Naomi, how would you feel about having a kitten?”
Naomi wiped away her tears and smiled, “I’d like that Sara.”