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Rainbow

by emilyrebecca


She sat in pajamas on the cold, white, tile floor of her basement, her feet under her, her body bent over a notebook, a red marker gripped tightly, though not quite correctly, in her small hand. Her tongue laid between her teeth, sticking out as if she could somehow taste her way into coordination, as the marker made a painstaking arch across the top of the page. It squeaked the whole way as if scared of the tightness it's been gripped with; scared of the child in silk Cinderella pajamas and her agonizing focus.

The girl went on with her drawing, dragging an orange marker over the lined page, right under the first. Into the empty basement, she hummed the song she’d learned at school to make sure she got the colors right and then went on with an arch of yellow, then green, then blue, then purple. She took extra time on the last stripe to make sure it was perfect, even though she was tempted to make it bigger than the rest, as it was in her opinion, the best color. The fluorescent lights buzzed above her and the dryer let out a steady thump from the room next door everytime it spun, still she went on drawing nonetheless, her eyes never leaving the page.

Now would be the hard part. She picked up a gel pen she’d gotten for her birthday and paid extra attention to how she was holding it. She imitated the procedure she’d been taught as best as she could, first making her hand into an alligator, then eating the pencil and making an O. She succeeded after not too long and all was well, minus her sore hand of course. The pen touched down on the page below the freshly drawn rainbow and slowly, but surely formed the letters she needed. R-A-I-N-B-O-W appeared on the page and a question mark soon followed.

The girl grinned widely, making the apples of her cheeks push up below her eyes and tucked her long, still wet hair behind her ears. She looked down at her drawing, and more importantly, her question as she walked up the dark wooden stairs and past the corners full of spiders that already claimed pages and pages of questions in her book.

She walked up the steps and her questions followed. Her questions always followed. They followed her, they followed us, they still follow me. Her questions were mine when I was still young and my questions now aren’t that different. I’m happy to tell her how rainbows work, as she's with me every day. She’s the side of me who trusts, who asks our questions and who assumes the best. I’ll tell her about how the sun reflects through water in the sky and splits into the beauty we call a rainbow, as long as she keeps telling me it's okay to live, to ask and to wonder. 


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Stickied -- Mon Jun 10, 2024 9:25 pm
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Coffeewriter wrote a review...



Hey there!! It’s Coffee, here to drop a quick, steaming hot review!! How are you today dear reader/author?^^
Grab a tasty treat and relax a little, will you? <3
Let’s dive into it, shall we?
First of all, I love how creative this is and I don’t know if it’s based on personal references but I love it a lot! I love the description and how hard it’s made to sound to the reader, so they understand how much effort the little girl is putting! I also noticed how there’s a lot of foretelling and I love that little detail, it really brings the whole setting and story together, leaving the reader reeling with questions and wanting to know more! I can immediately tell the little girl will be adorable, with rosy chubby cheeks and maybe(when dried) long plaited hair and bows at the end, maybe wearing a cute yellow dress… Cute!
At the end, it reveals all the little details and hints of what’s behind this seemingly harmless scene and treads into more sensitive topics. As I mentioned briefly before, I really hope this isn’t based on any type of personal experience or memories but if it is I hope you are not struggling too much!! Please reach out if you are struggling and need an helping hand or if you know someone who is!
Anyway, haha sorry I got distracted, the ending is a sad one but it’s a hopeful one too in a sense because the character manages to hang on and cling to their precious life because of this little, hopeful past self cheering them on. Aren’t we all like that, sometimes? We’re humans in the end, we all need a helping hand sometimes even if it’s from ourselves!
I love the message of the story and it kind of depends on how your views are to be honest! It’s a little sad how the character is so dependent on her little past self that that’s the only thing that makes her hang on. That’s sad….
Thank you for reading, your work is amazing!!!! Have a good day/night!! Good night(it’s late for me, haha)!


(P.S-I assumed it’s her past self that is mentioned, then again it’s just a way I interpreted it, there are many different meanings)!




emilyrebecca says...


I'm doing quite well, thank you so much for asking. This is based on personal experience and you were spot on in your analysis. It's been hard at times, but as of now, all is good. I can't say though that I'm not motivated by little me, but its a good way to remind myself to love myself. After all, how could you hate a little kid lol! She's just a baby and at the end of the day she is still a part of me, so thinking of it like that reminds me to treat myself gently and kindly. I so appreciate your review and your concern and hope you have a wonderful night!

(P.S- I love how you opened your review! It's so so cozy and the vibes are comforting :))



Coffeewriter says...


Thank you so much, you too!!^^



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Mon Jun 10, 2024 8:24 pm
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Ley wrote a review...



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Hello fellow writer! Ley here to write a tortoise-y review on this amazing work you've published! This is a new review style that I'm using only for the month of June, in spirit of the Great Tortoise Race! Let's get started, 'shell' we? xD

Shell Start: This is a super awesome short story! The story starts with a vivid image of the girl sitting on the cold, white tile floor in her basement, immersed in her drawing. Then, The narrative shifts to the first person in the final paragraph and reveals that the girl's curiosity and questions are shared by the narrator, presumably her older self. The ending actually made me stop and reflect on the story, and the morals that you wrote behind this whole piece. Let's get into the details~

Favorite Leaf:

She walked up the steps and her questions followed. Her questions always followed. They followed her, they followed us, they still follow me. Her questions were mine when I was still young and my questions now aren’t that different. I’m happy to tell her how rainbows work, as she's with me every day. She’s the side of me who trusts, who asks our questions and who assumes the best. I’ll tell her about how the sun reflects through water in the sky and splits into the beauty we call a rainbow, as long as she keeps telling me it's okay to live, to ask and to wonder.

This last paragraph is for sure my favorite part of the whole story. It made me stop, process the whole thing, and then reread from that perspective! I love how you added the contrast between the narrators older self, as well as the thought processes and innocence in the first part of the story. Great job!

I also wanted to point out your descriptions, because they're too awesome to go unnoticed. The girl is described in detail: her pajamas, the way she grips the marker, her tongue sticking out in concentration. I'm a description girly, so I really enjoyed it!

Shell Fractures:
I think this short story is perfect exactly the way it is. I didn't mind that it was on the super short side, because you managed to delve deeper and reflect themes of innocence, youth, and reflection in just this many words! I really enjoyed it, and don't have any corrections or suggestions. <3

Overall: Overall, this was a super fun read! Thank you for sharing, and I can't wait to read more of your work in the future.

Thank you for taking the time to read this review! I hope to see you join the race, and keep being awesome! Happy Writing~

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emilyrebecca says...


Omg, thank you so much for the review AND the turtle puns! I unfortunately logged back in on the 3rd, so this month isn't possible for me, but with Summer coming, we 'shell' see about next month! On another note, I'm so glad you enjoyed the story!



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Mon Jun 10, 2024 6:39 pm
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Isbah wrote a review...



Hi!! This is an awesome story which seems to show two sides to the speakers personality. (Have you heard of multiple personality disorder?) The details about the girl and her drawings really bring the story to life. The rainbow seems to represent her curiosity, wonder and childlike joy, as well as being a simple shape that she’s trying hard to draw which also makes the story realistic.
My only suggestion would be that the setting-the empty basement- contrasts with the descriptions of a happy girl drawing a rainbow. Is that on purpose and does it mean something? If it doesn’t, it might be better to change it to a setting that’s more joyful?
My favourite part is the last paragraph which is about asking and answering questions and not being afraid to. Specially the lines “ I’ll tell her about how the sun reflects through water in the sky and splits into the beauty we call a rainbow, as long as she keeps telling me it's okay to live, to ask and to wonder.” This really speaks to me.
That’s all, good luck writing and have a great day/night!




emilyrebecca says...


The setting was intentional. To me, it represents the girls light and curiosity being unwavering despite the dreary setting, but I totally understand if that wasn't immediately apparent. Also, when writing this piece, I was writing it as a personal narrative about my own childhood, aka the girl is me. I decided to play with the pov to try and convey a separation between my current and childhood self, which in the end still comes together to kind of represent the ways my "different selves" coexist and compliment each other. Again, it totally makes sense that that wasn't clear, I just wanted to let you know. I really appreciate your feedback on both this work and Cyclical! Have a great day/night!




The first draft is a trip to the amusement park. The next drafts are returning there as a safety inspector.
— SunsetTree