A Hidden Kindness

by Peyton, Age 13

It is 2050 on the streets of New York City, and Mary Joe is merely walking down the broken road. Everything was just so dull. Nobody went outside to play or get the mail or even go to work. It was like there was no purpose in life—at least that’s what Jonathan made it feel like. He hated life and cared about no one but himself.

But then Mary Joe arrived. She was the beauty in everything, even in this shattered world. It was like she brought meaning into life. Everybody loved Mary Joe and they treated her as if she were their own. She was the perfect little angel and everyone knew it, even Jonathon. He disliked how she was so kind to everyone and how she wanted to recreate this wasted world.

Every week the community would get together and work on some sort of project to help rebuild the city. This week the project was to build a garden. Everyone came to help and support one another, except for Jonathan. Nobody really expected him to come and participate or even to stop by. When over half of the garden plants were in the ground, they heard a loud slam of the door to his house. You could hear his gigantic footsteps pounding on the fresh, newly laid dirt. Jonathan went marching straight up to Mary Joe. He was seething with disgust.

“I am sick and tired of this nonsense! Every. Single. Day. I put up with your gibberish and how you think you can make this world a better place to live in!

With one hand, he snatched Mary Joe’s shovel while his other shoved her to the ground. Like a tornado, Jonathan annihilated everything in his path. In a matter of minutes, Jonathan had arrived, destroyed, and vanished. The whole community was in shock. They knew Jonathan had a temper but this? This was insane.

After a couple hours of thinking, Mary Joe made a decision to confront Jonathan. Sometimes it’s best to talk about your feelings than to express them verbally and mentally, she thought. She skipped her way over the bright, beautiful green grass that separated her house from Jonathan’s and knocked on his front door. Jonathan opened the door and seemed surprised to see who was waiting on the other side.

“What do you want,” he murmured.

“I just wanted to know why you always seem agitated and dismayed,” she replied.

“It’s none of your business,” Jonathan said while closing the door.

“Yes, I believe it is,” she spoke more confidently. “You are part of this town and it’s my job to make sure no one is bringing other people down.”

He finally invited her into his cold, but comforting home. They both sat down on a beat-up couch and sat there in silence. Finally, Jonathan admitted something he never had before.

“Its…. it’s just, when I was younger my family never really cared for me. My dad was always away at work or hanging out at the bar and my mom was always gone or locked in her room.” Mary Joe listened thoroughly. “And when I was 7, my dad was in a car accident late at night and 2 years later my mom got cancer and died. I guess I never really got over it,” he started to sniffle a little bit. “I figured if I can’t live a normal, cheerful life, then why should anyone else?”

Mary Joe tried to comprehend everything he was saying and wanted to comfort him. At this point, he was sobbing, so instead she went to find some tissues. Later that evening, Jonathan regained his composure and told Mary Joe he was done with bringing people down.

She was so happy she bolted out of the house and started skipping down the road singing. The whole community saw her and knew exactly what had happened. They joined in and eventually the whole road was taken up by ecstatic hearts. This was the first step to rebuilding the city and everything was going to work out perfectly.  THE END

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