The Promise

The Promise

A Story by Amaya Sullivan
"

Marc is in the last year of college, and visits his little sister who is in the care of a family friend. He visits her on Spring Break, but their time has come to an end...

"

"Do you have to go?" a high pitch Minnie mouse voice followed by a tug at Marc’s coat.  Marc turned around to meet his little sister, standing in her bright yellow rain boots with matching raincoat.  He recalled buying them for her birthday a couple months back. She was adamant about buying those boots. He tried convincing her of nice yellow dress instead.
           

The sound of a car speeding down the street yanked him from his memory. Marc watched his cab pulling to the driveway.  "Elise, I’ll be back. I promise." He smiled sweetly. He never knew leaving would be hard this time around. Spring term would be starting tomorrow with a full schedule. Thankfully, it was his last semester.
           

“And then"we’re going see the fireworks this summer"right?” she asks as if her squeaky voice could crack anymore. She knew she’d cry. She’s only five.  Marc glances at the cab driver tapping the meter.  He realized time to make this short and sweet.

 

Setting his leather bag on the damp cement, he squatted down to her eye level. “I promise.” He started holding his arms out. Elise took the invitation wrapping her tiny arms around his neck for one last hug. “We will go see the fireworks after having all the watermelon we want.” He whispered before pulling her away. Amazed how she wasn’t wailing like last time. “While I’m gone, you have to obey Ms. Reynolds, pinkie promise?”


Elise stared into her brother’s brown eyes searching for truth to his word. After wiping the tears from her tiny cheeks, she stuck out her pinkie finger grabbed hold of his. “I promise!” she shook his finger.


 Marc smiled, “Alright.”

 

Elise watched him grab his bag, opening the door of bright cab. Placing his bag inside before he entered, he began talking with the driver. She watched him reading something off a piece of paper.


 Smiling after the short conversation, Marc glanced out the window and waved at his sister. The cab driver began backing out onto the street. Elise started waving back chasing the cab to the end of the driveway.
   

“Elise!” a familiar voice called out,  “Come eat your breakfast before it cools,” Ms. Reynolds stood in front of the wooden white screen door, wiping her hands on her floured-stained, teal apron. “Elise!”

 

Standing at the end of the driveway, she kept her eyes on the cab until it disappeared. She began walking toward the porch recalling her new promise with Marc.
   

Her teary hazel eyes lit up with a new attitude. “Ms. Reynolds!” she chimed running to the porch,  “I'm a big girl now!” Elise shouted pushing her hair away, holding her back straight, lifting her head high. “Because, when Marc comes back, we’ll see all the fireworks!” she splashed in a puddle before reaching the steps.


Ms. Reynolds couldn't do anything, but laugh at the enthusiastic little girl. Elise stepped up the large blue steps, jumping onto the top step. She reached for the screen door leaving her wet footprints behind her. It opened with a belated familiar squeak. Ms. Reynolds was proud of her not crying so much this time around.
 

“Well, missy,” she began stifling her laughter, “Big girls clean their rooms. You can start after breakfast”
   

“Yes, ma’am!”

© 2013 Amaya Sullivan


Author's Note

Amaya Sullivan
Alright. My writing has graduated since I originally wrote this, so I'm giving it some TLC. Let me know what you think.

My Review

Would you like to review this Story?
Login | Register




Featured Review

Hi, Amaya. I read this story and liked it. It is a touching story.

Just as you pointed out the missing quote mark in my story, I find it necessary to point out a few things in your's, if you don't mind.

In the first paragraph, there is a long sentence fragment, an incomplete sentence. It is:

Watching his little sister standing in her bright yellow rain boots he had bought for her birthday last month.

Also in that part, there is an unnecessary word: "had". You don't need it.

As pointed out by Post Pen's review, you have some very long run-on sentences. Some of the sentences are TOO long. For instance:

“Elise, come eat your breakfast before it cools,” Ms. Reynolds’ calls out standing at the wooden white screen door as she wipes her hands on her floured-stained, blue apron, but the little brown haired girl ignores her waiting until she could no longer see the cab.

The apostrophe after the Ms. name should not be there. Is it of any importance to the story that the screen door is made of wood and white? No, not really. Punctuation is vitally important, and missing or incorrect punctuation can confuse the reader. For instance:

brown haired girl ignores her waiting

Ignores WHOSE waiting? Is someone waiting? By putting a comma after "girl", you clear it all up by writing "brown-haired girl ignores her, waiting until she could no longer see the cab." Now you are telling us the girl ignores the woman, because she is waiting. You see?

“And then…we can to go see the fireworks this summer…right?” she manages to ask through her tears as her forehead crinkles up at her own question waiting for her older brother's response.

The use of dots to show hesitation or an abrupt stop is incorrect. Dots are used to show some text has been taken from some other source, but not the complete text, only an excerpt of it, and the dots are called an ellipsis and are formatted "dot space dot space dot" like this:

". . .the space capsule was damaged. . ."

To show hesitation or an abrupt stop, you must use the "em" dash, which can be made by holding down the ALT key, hitting 0151, then releasing the ALT key, like this: "You—you—killed her?"

Additionally, that whole sentence above is much too wordy. It can be improved like this, for instance:

“And then—we can to go see the fireworks this summer—right?” she asks through tears, her brow wrinkled.

You've made your point, but are not much too wordy about it.

and grabs a hold of his.

I suggest deleting the "a" in that part above.

She smiles and waves back just as she always has during the last few months.

Compare my modification to that sentence to the one you wrote. You don't need all that follows it.

She begins marching in her sunshine yellow boots, splashing in the puddles along the way with her back straight and head held high.

There needs to be a comma after "boots", as I've indicated above. What follows "boots" is a modifier. It is modifying/describing the little girl's marching, so you need to set it off with a comma.

As the screen door opens with a belated yet familiar squeak as always, Ms. Reynolds chuckles even more by her new sense of determination.

I don't understand "belated". And WHOSE determination? Ms. Reynold's or the girl's? Rewrite below:

As Ms. Reynolds opens the squeaky screen door, she laughs again at the little girl's new sense of determination.

Lastly, it should be written: Yes, ma'am. It is like writing "Yes, sir", "Yes, Johnathon" and so on.

Overall, again it is a good story, but much too wordy, sentences too long, and the missing punctuation tends to make it confusing.

You just need to work on the mechanics, a bit.

I hope you find this review to be helpful. It is meant to be constructive.

Thomas C.



This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks for the thorough review. This is a very rough little story. I haven't had the chance to re-wr.. read more



Reviews

Your writing style is interesting. Good structure, Amaya.

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks for reading!
Hi, Amaya. I read this story and liked it. It is a touching story.

Just as you pointed out the missing quote mark in my story, I find it necessary to point out a few things in your's, if you don't mind.

In the first paragraph, there is a long sentence fragment, an incomplete sentence. It is:

Watching his little sister standing in her bright yellow rain boots he had bought for her birthday last month.

Also in that part, there is an unnecessary word: "had". You don't need it.

As pointed out by Post Pen's review, you have some very long run-on sentences. Some of the sentences are TOO long. For instance:

“Elise, come eat your breakfast before it cools,” Ms. Reynolds’ calls out standing at the wooden white screen door as she wipes her hands on her floured-stained, blue apron, but the little brown haired girl ignores her waiting until she could no longer see the cab.

The apostrophe after the Ms. name should not be there. Is it of any importance to the story that the screen door is made of wood and white? No, not really. Punctuation is vitally important, and missing or incorrect punctuation can confuse the reader. For instance:

brown haired girl ignores her waiting

Ignores WHOSE waiting? Is someone waiting? By putting a comma after "girl", you clear it all up by writing "brown-haired girl ignores her, waiting until she could no longer see the cab." Now you are telling us the girl ignores the woman, because she is waiting. You see?

“And then…we can to go see the fireworks this summer…right?” she manages to ask through her tears as her forehead crinkles up at her own question waiting for her older brother's response.

The use of dots to show hesitation or an abrupt stop is incorrect. Dots are used to show some text has been taken from some other source, but not the complete text, only an excerpt of it, and the dots are called an ellipsis and are formatted "dot space dot space dot" like this:

". . .the space capsule was damaged. . ."

To show hesitation or an abrupt stop, you must use the "em" dash, which can be made by holding down the ALT key, hitting 0151, then releasing the ALT key, like this: "You—you—killed her?"

Additionally, that whole sentence above is much too wordy. It can be improved like this, for instance:

“And then—we can to go see the fireworks this summer—right?” she asks through tears, her brow wrinkled.

You've made your point, but are not much too wordy about it.

and grabs a hold of his.

I suggest deleting the "a" in that part above.

She smiles and waves back just as she always has during the last few months.

Compare my modification to that sentence to the one you wrote. You don't need all that follows it.

She begins marching in her sunshine yellow boots, splashing in the puddles along the way with her back straight and head held high.

There needs to be a comma after "boots", as I've indicated above. What follows "boots" is a modifier. It is modifying/describing the little girl's marching, so you need to set it off with a comma.

As the screen door opens with a belated yet familiar squeak as always, Ms. Reynolds chuckles even more by her new sense of determination.

I don't understand "belated". And WHOSE determination? Ms. Reynold's or the girl's? Rewrite below:

As Ms. Reynolds opens the squeaky screen door, she laughs again at the little girl's new sense of determination.

Lastly, it should be written: Yes, ma'am. It is like writing "Yes, sir", "Yes, Johnathon" and so on.

Overall, again it is a good story, but much too wordy, sentences too long, and the missing punctuation tends to make it confusing.

You just need to work on the mechanics, a bit.

I hope you find this review to be helpful. It is meant to be constructive.

Thomas C.



This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks for the thorough review. This is a very rough little story. I haven't had the chance to re-wr.. read more
thank you for your submision, lovely little story. :)

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks for the review!
"Do you have to go?" as a high pitch Minnie mouse voice is heard over the sound of a car speeding by with no care to avoid the collection of small puddles from the early morning rain. (Run on sentence - thre ideas or 4) Marc turns around to meet Elise's gaze of her once serene hazel eyes now full of the possibility of abandonment. (I don't believe eyes can convey that.) Watching his little sister standing in her bright yellow rain boots he had bought for her birthday last month. He remembers trying to convince her to buy a nice yellow dress that day. But, she insisted on having those boots just as she is trying to convince him not to go.

*** My re-write
Try to convey one idea in each sentence. Decide what that thought is and be concise.
"Do you have to go?" a high pitch Minnie mouse voice asked. Marc heard his sister over a speeding car as they stood on the curb. The car made no attempt to avoid the puddles left by an early morning rain. (Did they get splashed?)
Marc turns around to meet Elise's gaze. Her hazel eyes sparkeled with tears. She was standing there in her bright yellow rain boots he got for her birthday last month. Oh, how he had tryed to convince her to buy a matching yellow dress that same day but she would have none of it. She was as stubborn then as she was now, trying to keep her brother from leaving.

Let me know if you want me to critique more.

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks for the review!
Sorry it took me so long to read this, I haven't checked this account in FOREVER. But it was so sweet. I could see and feel everything. The description was amazing, the emotion was perfect..I really enjoyed it. :)

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks! It's a little different from what I have been writing.
This is a great story. I love little Elise! So cute!

I did see many grammar mistakes in this so I do suggest a thorough edit. But this is great and worth reading. :)

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks! I am flattered. I see the mistakes as well, but I have been working on Destiny of an Azurine.. read more
Felicity's Eve

6 Years Ago

:) My pleasure.
Wow. It feels like I am reading history. I can picture little Elise stamping her foot and deciding she will be a big girl. I remember when my little girl said something similar.

Keep it up, I see potential in you. ( Yeah that from a crappy writer like me means almost nothing huh? :) )

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks for reading! I have no children of my own. However, I use to baby sit a lot in my teen years... read more
you have a nice story going but you could use a couple tweeks i'm going to go through the first paragraph to give you an idea of what to look for:

third sentance you said, "he bought for her, one for her birthday." the wording in this can confuse the reader and make them not want to read, try something like this instead, " the yellow rainboots he had bought for her on one of her birthdays"
it flows better and gives the reader an idea of the relationship between brother and sister.

thats really the only thing thats only in the first paragraph that i see, but like i said you have a great story line going!!:)

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks for pointing that out. Yes, it is a typo. I read this a few times and still didn't catch it. .. read more
marie

6 Years Ago

yeah, i do that to, sometimes it just takes another eye to catch it:)
I like the sentiment!
I would suggest a few things, if you're interested:
1) You seem to switch tense a lot, which is a bit confusing. I'm fine with either past or present, but maybe you should just choose one
2) You have awesome description, but a lot of it is packed into one sentence. Try breaking up a few of the longer sentences into one or two shorter ones. This gives the reader a chance to appreciate each detail.
3) Good dialogue! It might even be worth adding more- between Marc and Elise, between Elise and Ms. Reynolds... I'm even curious what the relationship is like between Marc and Ms. Reynolds
4) This is a style issue, but I'd add some more history. I love hearing about the fireworks, about Marc's past visits, but I wonder why Elise lives with a family friend? Why they're so far apart in age? How important is Elise to Marc? What is Marc's life like away from his sister? Are there others?

It's a good story, really! I look forward to reading more. ( I also love the name Eli...)

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

No, this is just a short story. No more will be added to this. Thanks for your review.
Different Wings

6 Years Ago

alright, sounds good
This is quite good. It's funny how much can come out of a simple sentence and a blank piece of paper sometimes. The one thing i noticed was that the description in the past few paragraphs are a little mismatched, for example, you say "hands on her floured stained pale blue apron" which is probably just a typo for either flowered, stained blue apron or flour-stained blue apron. Not a big deal just something I figured worth mentioning. Again good job on the story!

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 6 Years Ago


Amaya Sullivan

6 Years Ago

Thanks for catching that! Thanks for reading and reviewing. I appreciate it!
BeckyR

6 Years Ago

This is really lovely! I found myself sighing at the cuteness of Elise, she is really the typical he.. read more

Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


Stats

832 Views
10 Reviews
Added on April 2, 2013
Last Updated on August 18, 2013
Tags: family, sister, brother, yellow, boots, siblings, spring break, cab, promise, rain, separation
Previous Versions

Author

Amaya Sullivan
Amaya Sullivan

Hot and Humid, FL



About
An aspiring writer who spend her Friday nights with headphones and MS Word. Tweets by @amayawrites !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'http.. more..

Writing