The Bridge Below

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Margo ran across the garden, in the moonlight. She cried, and she cried hard.

She called for Quint through the sobs, but he didn’t answer her. She thought she’d see him, that he’d step out of the shadows with a smirk, green eyes twinkling. Tease her, tell her it was all a ruse. But he didn’t. She was alone.

And it hurt. It hurt so goddamn much.

The Bridge came into view; it was almost closed, and Margo didn’t have any way to open it again. She didn’t care. She never wanted to see this place again.

He’s gone.

The thought wouldn’t sink in, not even when she stepped through the Bridge and knew she’d never step back. It closed behind her, as it if had waited for her to go through it. She was back in the world Above, her world. But she didn’t feel like it.

She walked blearily to the doors of her house, her real, rickety, leaky old house. She smiled then, as she touched the doors. She even laughed. It was done. It was over. Bale was gone.

But she was still crying.

She almost didn’t see her parents. The back door was open, and Margo could see their car, their ugly toaster-shaped car that made Margo hide her face when they took her to school. Their suitcases sat in the passageway.


Her dad couldn’t finish; Margo threw himself around him. He smelt of cologne and coffee and airports, which kid Margo had always considered the smell of goodbyes, and she cried harder. She loved her parents then, she really, really did, and she knew that she loved them, and that’s no easy thing for a teenager to know.

“What’s the matter, sweetie?” Her dad exchanged a glance with her mom, emerging from the kitchen.

“I missed you so much,” Margo said.

“We missed you too.”

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