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A Friend in Need


As soon as I heard the faint sound of my parents’ door

close, I hopped out of bed and opened my closet

door. In the corner was my friend, Ilisa. She had been

living in my closet for a week now. She ran away

from home about three weeks ago. She says after her

parents’ divorce, all her mom and her do is fight. One

time, it turned into violence. That’s when she left.

Since then, this is her fourth home. After three or four

days, all of her other friends shooed her out the door.

I opened up a cabinet and handed her a bowl of soup.

She sipped it with peace, but knowing only more

terror was on its way.

“Um, Ilisa?” I whispered. “When are you planning on

going home?”

“Never,” she replied. I sighed. I didn’t know how much

longer I could keep doing this.

I went back to sleep, though.

Over the next few days, Ilisa got very whiny and

demanding. She got so annoying, I finally yelled at


“Ilisa, I can’t keep doing this! You’re invading my

space, my privacy and my life!”

“So… you’re kicking me out?” she asked softly.

I let out a big sigh, and started to breathe a bit.

“No. But I wish you’d at least think about what you’re doing

– to your friends, to you, to your mom.”

“Look, you don’t understand. You get along with your

mom fine. I’m doing what I have to do!” she cried.

“Maybe if you just swallow your stupid pride, accept

fate how it is and move along, you’d be going

somewhere!” I huffed and ran outside. I decided to

take a long, long walk. I thought and I thought. After

a while I started to realize Ilisa’s situation. I decided to

go back and apologize for my outrage.

When I arrived back, Ilisa was gone. I searched the

whole house. I started to panic. What if she had done

something to herself? Because of me!

After more searching, I finally told my mom everything.

We called Ilisa’s house but no one answered. We called

all of my friends and all of Ilisa’s friends. She wasn’t

anywhere. Finally, we called the police.

After two days of intense fright, the police called

back. They said Ilisa was fine. I ran up to my room

to call her again when I heard a distant ‘bing’ on my

computer. It was a message from Ilisa.


I just wanted to thank you for the hospitality you gave

Also, thank you for making me realize I had to do

something. My mom and I are in therapy and we’re

working out all our problems. You’re the only one that

has actually treated me like a person over the past

few weeks. Thanks again. — Ilisa”

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