“...West Heckerling is not a safe place for women. Everyday, men keep punching us down to the ground and most of us reach rock bottom. This leads to suicide and nobody does anything about it. Of course, there are women like me who see this as a red flag and some of us share it too, but we really do not have the authority to make a difference, and when we try to, we’re punished by men.” Astrid finishes.
“Astrid, that does not sound convincing. Honey, you know that there are women out there who would go against this because they just won’t understand.,” I say.
“I know, but I’m just not good with words. I’m not as smart as you, which is why I told you that I want you to write this speech,” she whines.
“You know I can’t do that. They’re your ideas. Only you can share them and because only you can sound convincing while reading them out . You’d put all your pain and emotions in it-” I get cut off by Astrid.
“See? My pain and my emotions. Sophie, they are subjective, and you understand other people, you know what they think about everything. So if I want them to connect to it, I need a speech that only you can write.”
“Alright, I just need you to give me some time because I might end up writing some of my ideas without thinking, when your speech should only deliver your ideas.”
“Sophie, what are your ideas anyway?” she asks. I sigh and look at the clock above my door frame.
“All I can tell you is that they’re not as good as yours. It’s 5 in the evening, now leave before my father finds you here.” I open the window.
“Alright, I’ll see you later then.” She then goes near the window and steps outside to the ground. I just smile and wave her goodbye. This whole making a difference thing is insane, but I am not stopping Astrid because she is very stubborn and I want to see her loose, I want to see her suffer. I met Astrid when I was seven and she was nine. She bullied me till I was eleven years old, and all that time I was planning my sweet sweet revenge. According to her, we’ve become really good friends when her parents wanted her to marry my brother and she did not want to, so I helped her out in cancelling the arrangement. Nobody else knows about it, it’s our little secret. I clean my room and hide all my books under the bed. I hear footsteps coming from outside the room that belong to my father. I sit in front of my little dollhouse. I then see the doorknob turn.
“Sophie, darling, can you guess what’s behind my back, hiding between my two hands?” my father says as he walks in.
“Father! I do not know, is it a new doll?”
“No, but it’s alright, you’re not as smart as your brother little one. I got you chocolate chip cookies!” he then reveals them.
“Father! Yes! Thank you!”
“Anything for my sweetheart,” he smiles. His eyes then scan my room.
“Your room looks great, you’re not spending time with Astrid right?”
“No father, I told her and she understands.” I lie.
“Alright, I’m going to the library. Make me dinner and place it on the table outside the library, darling.” I nod, and he smiles and walks out. Sometimes, I do wish that Astrid’s plan to make a difference works, I hate acting like a little baby in front of my father, I hate cooking him dinner, I hate that dollhouse, and I hate these cookies. I throw them on the wall and aggressively lay down on my mattress. I hate being pragmatic.
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