“Look, Stevie. I gotta go. We’ve been told to evacuate, and it’s raining pretty heavy.”
“You going to be okay, Rae? I can send you cash.”
Rae looked up to her ceiling. She wondered how high the water would get. She wouldn’t be alone; there would be plenty of locals at the evacuation center. She rubbed her hand across her forehead.
“I don’t need your money, Stevie.” She bent down to pick up her back pack. “I’ll be fine.”
Rae spent two weeks at the evacuation center. She knew the people. She’d been part of the community for seven years helping out at the wildlife rescue, working in the local cafe.
Stevie rang. She didn’t want to hear her brother offer her money again. They both remembered the time all those years ago when she took money from him. And what she’d done with it, done to herself. “No, Stevie, I can’t move back yet. It needs some work. It’s not too bad though. I’ll be fine. Don’t worry.” I’ll never take another cent from you. Never make bad choices, hang out with the wrong people. Never disappoint you again, Stevie. The words were loud in her brain, just not out loud.
Rae worked on her house, but she did need help. The water stain was at least two feet up the walls. Drying out she supposed, everything inside the walls and out drying out. Like she had years ago sitting on the steps of a homeless shelter. She sat on the front steps of her home, leaning her head into her hands, elbows digging into her knees. Don’t cry, don’t cry.
A truck pulled up. Rae heard the doors bang and brushed the moisture from her cheeks. Her heart jumped looking at Stevie standing in front of her. “I figured you needed hands, not money. I brought my mates. We’ll transform the house for you so it won’t look like a flood zone. Make it even better than it was if you like.” She read his hopeful eyes. Maybe the brother sister relationship, too. Maybe make it better.