A stone bridge cast long shadows in the afternoon sun, over the small stream that meandered through the field of wildflowers. On the bridge a tall boy stretched out over the edge, his fingers dipped in the cool water and a playful smile dancing across his lips. He seemed content to lay out on the bridge in the summery warmth as the afternoon was heading to a close.
Arianna looked away from the page, her fingers stained with the lead from her pencils and her chestnut hair tied back in a single braid that reached down her spine. She closed the sketch book and slid her chair away from the desk; there was something unsettling about the sketch book and her newest drawing. The drawing seemed too life like; the boy wasn’t in her original plan, as if he had walked on from somewhere off the page. She chewed at her lower lip, almost scared to reopen the sketchbook which her mother had purchased from the markets that afternoon for her. She let out a sigh and hastily flipped the book back to the page with her drawing, scolding herself for being so daft.
She finished off the drawing with her signature in the corner of the page and shut the book again. Downstairs she found her mother at the kitchen table, leaning over a cooking magazine with a pen in one hand, a note pad in the other. Her thin eyebrows were pulled together above her light blue eyes and her hair was tied into a bun that sat atop her head. Arianna was the perfect blend of her mother and father. She had her mother’s eyes, with her father’s personality, her mother’s optimism, with her father’s laugh.
“Hey ma,” Arianna sat across from her mother at the table, “I drew something…”
“Oh, that’s lovely. Show me?” Her mother looked up with a smile. Arianna held out the sketchbook. Her mother opened it to the first page. Arianna chewed her lower lip and twirled the end of her braid between her fingers as her mother’s eyes scanned the page. She watched her mother taking in the drawing for a few moments before she spoke.
“So, what do you think?”
“It’s beautiful. I think you definitely have your grandmother’s talent. You get better with each drawing. What inspired this?” Arianna shrugged one shoulder with nonchalance, “It just came to me, I guess.”
“You’re such a teenager sometimes,” her mother laughed, “No enthusiasm. Come on, help me cook dinner.”
Arianna set about helping her mother cook dinner; it was a normal night for the family. They talked about how Arianna wanted to be a famous artist ever since she could hold a pencil, they laughed and gossiped about the boys at school who may or may not have been cute.
They were all completely unaware of how Arianna’s life was about to change forever.