Part II: Journeys (Chapter 19)

It’s dark and cold here.

Where’s Nana? She’s got to be somewhere here, don’t she?

I walked home from school ALL BY MYSELF!!!

I’m five years old, a BIG girl.

I crossed West 7th Street and Otoe, too.

Well, the crossing guard stopped the cars, but I wasn’t afraid, so there.

I want some cookies.

Where are you, Nana?

My turn to be princess today.

I got to wear the princess dress.

Ronnie O’Hara got to wear the cowboy costume.

He’s mean.

Kept shooting me with his gun.

Bang! Bang!

He said I’d be dead if I didn’t leave him alone.

I didn’t do nothin’ to him. I just wanted to play house.


Miss Pritchard wouldn’t let me out to play, ‘cuz she said the dress might get dirty.

Said I had to sit at my desk and fold my hands like a good girl.

I couldn’t even color.

But Ronnie got to go out.

I told Miss Pritchard I wanted to wear the cowboy suit tomorrow.

She said girls don’t wear cowboy suits.

I don’t want to be the princess no more.


So I takes that stupid ‘ole dress off.

I throws it away, and puts my own clothes back on.

Then I goes outside.

“Where’s that pretty dress?” Miss Pritchard asked.

“I threw it away! It’s ugly!”

She made me go back inside and hang it up.

Then I had to stand in the corner ALL DAY.

Nana??? Nana??? Nana???

I hate kindergarten. I don’t never wanna go back.

Nana? Where are you? NANA!


“What’s the matter, Samantha?” Nana whispers. “I’m right here.”

“Please don’t go away!”

“We’re going to California tomorrow.”


“Your mama wants you.”

“You’re my mama.”

“No, honey. I’m your Nana. Your mama lives in California with your new daddy.”

“You’re my mama.”

“You’re going to live with her and your new daddy.”

“Pappa’s my daddy.”

“Your new daddy is Dean Platts.”

“Pappa’s my daddy.”

“And your mama’s going to have a baby. You’re going to have a baby brother or sister.”

“You’re my mama.”

“You don’t have to go back to kindergarten.”

“Where’s California?”

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