By: Ana Vidosavljevic
Lizzie, the Wind, was very fidgety waiting for the Clouds to appear. All of them were late. Mrs. Peterson was obviously angry and even though Lizzie was right on time as well as all the others, Birds, House, Chimney, Church, she showed the obvious annoyance by having to wait the rest of them.
Almost half an hour passed and Mrs. Peterson’s annoyance was directed to Lizzie, the Wind, since she was dancing nervously which irritated the Goddess, Mrs. Peterson. Lizzie didn’t know what a “Goddess” really meant and what qualifications, degrees or virtues had brought her that title, but she imagined probably the serious face which never smiled, stern look, discerning eyes and high-pitched voice. Also, she was a chatterbox. She never stopped talking. Well, Lizzie didn’t mind being the Wind. At least winds don’t talk. And she was not much of a talker.
When the Clouds finally appeared all fluffy and bouncing, Lizzie, the Wind, breathed the sigh of relief. Angry Goddess rushed them in and told them never to repeat that again or they would be forever expelled from the Heaven. And nothing would bring them back, no crying, begging, protests, whining. Well, most of the Clouds didn’t seem to care. Actually, Lizzie thought some of them would be happy to leave never to return. And Lizzie, the Wind, even though happy with being what she was, the graceful Wind, also thought that maybe she would be happier if she was not the part of this Heaven. It was not the Heaven itself that bothered her, since the Heaven was pretty cozy and warm place, and she preferred spending time there than on the cold winter street, but Mrs. Peterson, the Goddess, who didn’t put much efforts to make anyone welcome to this Heaven.
Since all those who were supposed to be there had arrived, the show could start. And Mrs. Peterson’s serious face somehow loosened its fierceness and got mellow features. She was so focused on making the Heaven operate perfectly that she forgot about her anger. Everyone relaxed. The soft tunes could be heard in the background and the main stage of the Heaven was given to the Clouds. They chatted nosily, and naughtily played around splashing the rain drops on the town below, sending lightning and thunders and scaring the citizens of the town. Those citizens were small metal figures, children’s toys. The people prayed that the Rain stopped and the Sun appeared and it seemed the only one who heard those prayers was the Wind. And Lizzie, the Wind, decided to help those people. She jumped in the middle of the Clouds pushing them abruptly and fiercely until they couldn’t stand on their feet and they all fell down making such a noise and screaming loudly that the whole Heaven shook. The Goddess started yelling asking the Wind to stop and she jumped in the middle of all those fallen bodies trying to get hold of the Wind who was so engrossed in her role that she didn’t even notice that the Goddess was just behind her. The Wind was dancing to the sounds of the soft music happy that she managed to throw the Clouds away from the Heaven’s throne, and she started turning around in the circles when suddenly and accidentally she hit the Goddess so hard that the Goddess stumbled and fell down on the stage with a thump. Her face got red and furious and in that fury, she couldn’t pronounce even a word. And if she could, the Wind thought a whole lot of thunders would get out of her mouth.
Shocked and scared, Lizzie, the Wind, moved her hands over her mouth but still a frail scream left her mouth cavity and the tears filled her eyes.
Finally, Mrs. Peterson, the Goddess found her lost voice and started yelling frantically: “You, silly child! Haven’t I told you a billion times that the Wind should chase the Clouds away not push them on the stage???!!! Haven’t I repeated those words so many times every single day???!!!”
“I am so sorry Mrs. Peterson. I am truly sorry.” Lizzie wept.
“Get out from her. Go to the dressing room and change that costume!” Mrs. Peterson still yelled but it seemed her voice got more pleasant sound.
Lizzie rushed through the door and ran to the dressing room. Her tears were all around her costume and her face and they threatened to cause a flood. She did it again. She spoiled the opportunity to play in a show and she ruined the chance she had been given. Mrs. Peterson picked her up from the street, sorry that the poor child begged for money and looked for the food in garbage bins, she opened the door of a new opportunity for her and made her a part of this amazing play which was supposed to be performed for the whole town in the town’s theater, and Lizzie, that silly girl, ruined everything.
Lizzie cried and cried unable even to take off her wind costume. The costume got drenched and Lizzie started feeling that her eyes were wet and puffy and her face soaked with her own tears. Suddenly, the door of the dressing room opened and Mrs. Peterson entered. Instead of yelling and reproaching Lizzie, she approached her, helped her take of the costume and wet clothes until Lizzie was left only in her underwear and then, she sat on the chair next to her.
“Please stop crying.” Mrs. Peterson said with an unusually soft voice. “I didn’t mean to be so fierce and scare you. But I do take seriously everything I do and I want to make this play perfect. That is me. Sometimes, in the burst of that chase for perfection I forget to be tactical and mellow and I leave the impression of a terrible angry woman, which I might become but I don’t mean to. So I apologize for that.”
“Will you return me back to the street? Am I expelled from the show?” Lizzie asked panicky.
Mrs. Peterson smiled gently and said: “No, of course not. You are a good actor, Lizzie. You get so involved into acting that you forget everything else, which can be good, but it also has its downsides. You forget what your role is all about and what you are supposed to do. I need you to be more focused and memorize what your role requests from you to do. Will you be able to do that?”
“I promise I will try Mrs. Peterson. I promise.” Lizzie said with a meek voice, her head bowed in shame.
“Ok. Then, we have an agreement and there is no need to cry. Now, dress up and go to the classroom. We will have a theory class. And for tomorrow’s rehearsal just remember: The Wind should chase the Clouds away.”
Mrs. Peterson said that in so tender manner that the fact left Lizzie confused. For the first time she thought that maybe Mrs. Peterson really liked her, even loved her. Anyway, why would she give her another chance? That thought warmed her heart. She stood up, went to her locker and took her clothes out smiling while getting dressed. Well, everyone made mistakes, and everyone deserved another chance. And she promised herself that she would not ruin it this time, not knowing that even if she did, Mrs. Peterson would give her another chance, and another, and another, and another…