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An Image in the Mirror
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Ten-year-old Julia slipped on her Mom’s suede jacket with the fringes. It hung down well below her waist, but she still loved it. She had sneaked into her Mom and Dad’s room to see if she could disguise herself so that David O’Leary and the gang wouldn’t recognize her. David O’Leary was still mad that she called him a fat blubber belly and wanted to beat her up. When she told her Mom, she just said, “mmm hmmm.” She knew she had to at least try to save Stubs, the three-legged guinea pig who was now in the clutches of Professor Fentley who would do experiments on the beloved guinea pig.

Julia found a colorful scarf in one of the drawers and threw it around her neck. Then she grabbed a suede brown floppy hat which hung from a giant mirror which sat on the dresser. When she flopped the hat down, she could barely see her face in the mirror, but she also couldn’t see.

She flipped the hat back and surveyed herself for a moment, a girl with long, wild blondish brown hair, hexagon-shaped eye glasses and a bright yellow patch over her right eye. She could take it off if she wanted, but she was always worried that her blind eye would look funny because it didn’t always follow her other eye. She had no control over that crazy eye. So the patch stayed on.

Wearing hat and suede jacket, Julia attempted to open the closet door next to the dresser, wondering what treasures she might find. The door wouldn’t budge at first, and she pulled hard. Finally, the door burst open and boxes and colorful scarves and clothing fell out on top of her as if the door hadn’t been opened in years. Luckily, nothing was heavy enough to harm her, though it was shocking. A couple of boxes tumbled over as she pushed herself up moving old newspapers and photographs around.

“Wow,” she said to herself, as she picked up an old newspaper clipping with a photo of her mom and dad in front of a bunch of other folks, all holding signs about peace and stopping the war They were leading a protest, and they both actually got arrested but were let out the next day. Mom and Dad arrested? No way, thought Julia. She couldn’t picture that. She knew they believed in causes and she’d even attended a couple of peace marches in Golden Gate Park with her parents and a bunch of other people. She remembered the kids all got free balloons to carry, and people waved at them and cheered as they walked by.

As Julia sat cross-legged amid the mess on her parents’ bedroom floor, she forgot she probably was not allowed to be there, and an idea dawned on her. Like Dad said, “if you want something, you’ve gotta do whatever you can to get it.” Why not protest about Stubs who was now at a laboratory about to get experimented on? Animal rights and all that. Even at her young age, she understood that. She’d seen her parents in action since she was little, although she had no idea they ever went to jail.

She rummaged through the colorful mess on the floor and found some giant pieces of cardboard. She would make signs.

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