Short Stories

Reina’s Birthday

In the little corner of her bedroom, almost-ten-years old Reina was sulking over the fact that the most favorite person of hers was not going to be present for her birthday party the next day. But she gathered the courage to do what was expected of her every day. She went on with her chores as usual but this time, more mechanically. No smile or any of her cheery facial expressions. She did not speak to anyone after she heard the news.

The next day came along. Reina was officially ten years old. Everyone was preparing for the big party. Even on her birthday, Reina worked mechanically. Again, she showed no signs of happiness for finally turning the big ten. After she performed her chores, she went back to her little corner to sulk a little more. And she still stayed mute.

It was 5:30PM; the servants hurried to get the last minute tasks done. Then it was 6:00PM; guests were here with presents to little Reina.

Meanwhile, her mom was helping Reina get dressed up. Reina was wearing a Cinderella-like gown as Cinderella was her favorite Disney princess. Yet that did not help in cheering her up. It was time for her to go downstairs for the party. As her manners demanded, she greeted and said hello to each and every one of the guests. But no smile accompanied with her hellos. The guests were a little concerned and tried to make her smile but nothing worked.

It was about time to cut the cake. The cake was set on a table in the center of the living room. Everyone gathered around it as Reina made her way through the crowd to the table. She kept glancing at the front door in hopes of finding her favorite person walking through the door. No luck. There was no one.

She released a big sigh as she took the cake and was about to cut it when she heard the front doors open and shut. She looked up at the door and there he was, her dad!

Everyone including her mom shouted, “SURPRISE!!”

Reina dropped the knife to the floor in surprise with her mouth open in shock. Finally, she was grinning ear to ear with joy of seeing her dad. She thought that she would never see him again since he was recruited to serve in the military about nine months ago. He was always present for her birthdays.

His arms were wide open as Reina ran towards him. He picked her up and embraced her.

Reina whispered, “Dad, you are here.”

“Yes, my dear muffin, I am,” her dad replied back.

He slowly put her down and took out a little box from behind with a ribbon tied to it.

“Happy Birthday, my little one,” he wished as he placed the present in Reina’s hand.

Reina kissed her dad’s cheek as a thank you for the gift and led him to the the cake table. With her dad on her side, she cut the cake. She was beaming with joy and there were no bounds to her happiness. She went to back to her normal talkative self. She said her thanks to everyone for giving her the surprise.

Though she was given many presents, her biggest present of all was her dad’s presence. She was content with having her dad with her. That was all she wanted and she got it. She knew that her dad has to go back to the military the next day but she was satisfied with getting to spend some time with him on her birthday. She liked to live in the moment and was doing exactly that.

She may or may not be able to live long enough to celebrate her birthday next year as she was diagnosed with an incurable disease. And so, everyone did everything they could to keep her happy as long as she lived.

What did you think? Please feel free to critique my writing. Always open to suggestions. Thanks in advance.

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