Beautiful.
The crocus, its velvety violet petals curling toward the sky, gleaming.
Kneeling next to it, the boy, pale-faced and dark-haired, with eyes so blue they look violet.
Amidst the snow, bathed in moonlight, both are beautiful.
I stand a few feet away, not daring to move. It seems like a crime to disrupt them. The boy, probably my age – fourteen – is simply gazing at the crocus, mesmerized. He hasn’t shown any sign of seeing me. 
I’m burning to know what’s caused that smile on his face.
Exhaling, I take a step towards the flower and the boy. He looks up.
“I saw the bud become a flower,” he says. His voice is like . . . melting ice.
He stands.
We stare at each other.
What?” I finally whisper.
Then he dashes, smiling.
“What – wait!” I call, then run after him.
I’m fast, but so is he. I quicken my pace, my shoes sinking into the deep snow. I’m not exactly sure why I’m so curious to catch up to him. I think it’s the magical aura around him, something that speaks of eternity and yet the opposite.
Panting now, I try to catch up, but I’m not fast enough. I slow down as he disappears into the distance, my breaths making white puffs in the air. The running has brought the sting of tears to my eyes.
I stare at where I last saw him, then sigh.
Dismal, I trudge back to the crocus. When I reach it, I dig it out, along with its roots, and take it home.
There, I plant it in our yard. Patting the dirt, I stand up, clasp my hands.
It doesn’t look half as beautiful as it did before. It looks dull and out of place.
Almost crying, but not really sure why, I dig the crocus out again, and walk back to where it was before. It’s a long, hard walk.
I reach the spot where it was before, and replant it. Now the crocus is . . . alive. Magical. Eternal yet so mortal.
I return home. Lying in bed, I cry, smiling.
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Juma
Juma(@juma)
2 years ago

Hello Tejal. I read this story for the first time in January or February of 2020, when it was shortlisted in ZenGarden.club. Two things stand out from that first reading – the fact that you were in Middle School when you wrote it, and the fact that I cried when I read it. Such sensitivity and superb writing from someone so young made me know that there was indeed hope for the human race! Now today, I saw the story published on Voice.club, and I’m thrilled to be able to tell you that it’s still one of the most beautiful, moving stories I’ve read on these two special sites. I’m so glad you’re now a member of the Voice Club. I’m looking forward to many more of your lovely stories!

Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary(@carrie-oleary)
2 years ago

Tejal, this is really quite beautiful to read. Very stirring and heartfelt. I agree with Juma, for someone of your age, this is an incredible piece of writing and I very much look forward to reading more of your work.

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Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
1 year ago

Hi Tejal, I was totally moved while reading your story. And I learned many things from it, like: keeping and taking care of a flower is like taking care of someone you love – even though you gave everything, you do everything but if both of you are not meant to be, it doesn’t work and the more you push, the more you hurt each other so the best way is to let go. Learning to let go of something which is not destined to be yours is not easy, the process is always painful but it is for the BETTER. Like taking care of crocus, it is destined to be where it belongs, it is not destined to be yours to keep. Excellent writing! Good job:-)

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Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
Reply to  Tejal Doshi
19 days ago

It’s okay, Tejal. You’re most welcome.

Katy Bizi
Katy Bizi(@katy-bizi)
1 year ago

Such a beautiful story. I loved how the description painted a clear picture that fit the plot. Congratulations, Tejal!

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Fuji
Fuji(@fuji)
20 days ago

This is truly a beautiful story, Tejal. Are you still writing? I would love to hear more from a writer as sensitive and talented as you.

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