Someone in My Life

Stephanie Xu

I don't like to visit my grandma. But my mom sometimes puts my brothers and me at grandma's home when I was a kid. Grandma seldom talks to me but she loves to play with my brothers. I remember one time she put the chicken drumsticks in the bowl of my two brothers. I thought she'll give me a chicken wing. It's better than nothing. But she ate chicken wings by herself.
I miss mom. She gives me chicken wing every time, but never a chicken drumstick, she gives it to my brothers.
I hope someone gives me chicken drumsticks, I pray.
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When I was ten years old, I went to my hometown on summer vacation with my family. My cousin came to play with my brothers frequently and stayed at my home.
One night, I suddenly wake up. Mom turned her back to me. I looked at the half-closed door and I saw a figure past walking around outside. And he stopped and walked in my direction. I shook my mom's arm gently inside the quilt. Mom suddenly turned to me and coughed.
I saw mom gazed at me. The shadow was drifting for a while and finally disappeared.
When I asked the next morning, everyone said they slept in their bedroom.
The shadow disappeared without a trace.
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I am afraid to look in the mirror at night. When I am alone, when the house is silent and when the whole world is falling asleep, I am sober, the person in the mirror is also awake.
I found out the person in the mirror is not exactly the same as me. She is an imitator which is her meaning of life. She has to follow every step I move. But in the evening, she sometimes wants to be herself. Like an ordinary person, she wants to live her own life. However, I don't allow it.
There was one time at 00:00 a.m., I scrutinized myself in the mirror. But she didn't concentrate on looking at me. Maybe she wanted to relax and stopped being an imitator for a while.
There was the first time I saw the real her, in the mirror.
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I go home by MTR at rush hour. There are delicate hairy crabs waiting for me at home. I experienced a sudden desire to eat hairy crabs when I eat the unpalatable meals at the school's canteen day after day.
It is stuffy and I began to feel dizzy. I hold the handrail tightly and look for a seat. All seats are occupied.
“Almost home.” I encourage myself to hold on just a little longer. I feel a dull stomach pain.
“Maybe because I only ate a slice of bread for today.” I walk over the opposite platform quickly and hold down my stomach. “Two stations left.” I comfort myself.
The door is open, but still no seats available. I lean on the door and I am more aware of the train's turbulence after I close my eyes. I open my eyes and It is a bit dark. I blink my eyes for several times. It is darker!
I know that the terrible thing is going to happen again. I can't see their faces clearly but only the black figure. I know I am going to fall down again.
“Sorry, I feel a little bit uncomfortable.” I tell the person next to me.
“Are you ok?” It is a man.
“Sorry, I can't see anything now.”
“Hold my arm, the next station is coming soon.” The man puts my hand on his arm.
I don't know what happens next. I feel like my body is floating. I hear some noise. Maybe just a few minutes past. I lay in a chair at MTR station. “It is blue, I am in Hang Hau station now, I'm almost home.” But I was taken to an ambulance, now I am farther away from home.”
After I awake, I see my mom.
“Mom, did you see the man who helps me at MTR?”
“What? A man? The MTR staff told me that you felt uncomfortable so you went out from the train and laid down on a chair.” Mom wonders.
“OK......”
“You must be starving. The doctor said you are fine. Let's go back home and eat hairy crabs.”
Mom said.
After I finish the dinner, I leave a hairy crab at the table, for the man.
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I get up two hours earlier than usual since I have a date.
After a shower, should be applying a facial mask for twenty minutes. The first step should be sunscreen. Then, apply foundation and concealer for flawless skin. Eyebrow pencil is necessary for creating explicit facial features. Eyeliner, mascara and eyeshadow for shiny eyes. Blush and lipstick for an adorable face. Use a curling iron to set up hairstyle. Finally, wear the dress I chose last night.
“Your phone is currently unanswered and now will be transferred to voicemail......”
The one waiting for me is lost.
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Every time I walk through the footbridge, I see a man.
Every time he is accompanied by a lover. It just short-time tenderness. They meet here, say goodbye here.
Every time they are silent, I haven't heard a word they said.
I know his lover’s name is Smoke. Once the man calls, Smoke appears with the lit cigarette.
After the man throws the cigarette butt away, his lover is gone.
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Stephanie Xu is a student of the Department of Humanities and Creative Writing, Hong Kong Baptist University

Stephanie Xu

Stephanie Xu is a student of the Department of Humanities and Creative Writing, Hong Kong Baptist University

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