I have an hour. Go.
Jack thought he had not a friend in the world, but he did. He had Bertie. The problem was that Jack didn’t believe it. He was eleven and Bertie only six; she couldn’t be his friend.
“You can’t be my friend,” Jack argued. “You’re practically a baby. Besides, you’re a girl.”
“What does my being a girl have to do with anything? I can throw a ball farther than anybody in kindergarten. I climb trees, run like the wind, and make chocolate chip cookies from scratch. And you can’t get enough.” Bertie could have continued but stopped there, elevating her chin slightly, pursing her lips, and planting her little hands on her hips as though she just might rule the world some day.
Bertie had a very clear sense of herself, already, at six. Her boldness astounded Jack who was a skinny, quiet child who preferred his books to baseball, shooed spiders outside rather than stomping them flat, and sketched picture after picture of anything that caught his eye. He hurried home from school each day alone with his chin tucked downward, hands in his pockets, and his eyes straight ahead.
Though Jack felt lonely at times, he never was alone, for Bertie was there, a little, blond imp who looked at her friend with unabashed admiration that made Jack blush crimson. It’s embarrassing.
Jack wanted to chase her away sometimes, but he didn’t for reasons he could not have articulated at the age of eleven. At twenty- three, however, on the day Bertie turned eighteen, Jack found his voice. She had been right.
Started at 3:45. Finished at 4:32 – Writing Practice