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Unformatted text preview: at thing alone, but do you listen? Of course not!”
The tirade went on for perhaps another minute, with Liesel making a desperate suggestion or two about the
possible location of the said brush. It ended abruptly, with Rosa pulling Liesel close, just for a few seconds. Her
whisper was almost impossible to hear, even at such close proximity. “You told me to yell at you. You said
they’d all believe it.” She looked left and right, her voice like needle and thread. “He woke up, Liesel. He’s
awake.” From her pocket, she pulled out the toy soldier with the scratched exterior. “He said to give you this. It
was his favorite.” She handed it over, held her arms tightly, and smiled. Before Liesel had a chance to answer,
she finished it off. “Well? Answer me! Do you have any other idea where you might have left it?”
He’s alive, Liesel thought. “. . . No, Mama. I’m sorry, Mama, I—”
“Well, what good are you, then?” She let go, nodded, and walked away.
For a few moments, Liesel stood. The corridor was huge. She examined the soldier in her palm. Instinct told her
to run home immediately, but common sense did not allow it. Instead, she placed the ragged soldier in her
pocket and returned to the classroom.
Everyone waited. “Stupid cow,” she whispered under her breath.
Again, kids laughed. Frau Olendrich did not.
“What was that?”
Liesel was on such a high that she felt indestructible. “I said,” she beamed, “stupid cow,” and she didn’t have to
wait a single moment for the teacher’s hand to slap her.
“Don’t speak about your mother like that,” she said, but it had little effect. The girl merely stood there and
attempted to hold off the grin. After all, she could take a Watschen with the best of them. “Now get to your
“Yes, Frau Olendrich.”
Next to her, Rudy dared to speak.
“Jesus, Mary, and Joseph,” he whispered, “I can see her hand on your face. A big red hand. Five fingers!”
“Good,” said Liesel, because Max was alive.
When she made it home that afternoon, he was sitt...
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This note was uploaded on 01/17/2014 for the course ENG 99 taught by Professor Michal during the Winter '13 term at CSU Sacramento.
- Winter '13