Lisa Perez always dreamed of something better, she always felt like she had more to offer than sitting in front of a desk from 9 to 5 everyday attending to people with so many issues ranting about their miserable lives, but In a city where family wealth and status were everything, she was painfully aware that she had to make do with what she had, Lisa grew up in a relatively poor home She had 3 younger brothers; Julius the eldest was 20 years old, Bolin was 16 and Binxing was 12. Their parents had passed away 10 years ago without leaving anything substantial to their name. She was just 16 years old then, so they had to live with their grandmother, who was their only living relation at the time , but Nana passed away 5 years later,barely a month after Lisas 21st birthday, she was still in business school at the time so she had to work 3 jobs so she could complete business school and keep the boys in school. Poor as they were Lisa never lost faith that things would get better, her grandmother was Chinese and she very religious and she made sure that all her grandkids were religious as well. She taught them to pray every morning before their day began. Sometimes the kids would complain about it. They did not like waking up that early. She had this saying every time they tried to grumble their way out of prayers.

”Without faith we
e all living meaningless lives ” she would say wiggling her wrinkled fingers at them. After Eventually it became a habit she couldn do without. She would pray to all the gods every day and today wasn any different

It was a dark morning, the sun was not out yet, Lisa was saying her morning prayers to the goddess it was a routine that took about 15 mins of her time every day so she had to be up early to meet up with her busy schedule. She was saying her final prayer with her head bowed when she felt a sudden warmth all around her and a soft voice whispering something that sounded like her name.

” What was that ” she thought.

The ordeal had left her goosebumps but she didn have time to ponder on it because she had to get Bolin and Binxing to school before leaving for work.

She went up to their room to wake them up. She usually left Julius to sleep a little bit later because he was done with high school. Hed be off to college by now but they didn have enough money to send him off, so he had to take a gap year so they could raise enough for tuition. The extra few minutes were usually short lived because all the shuffling usually woke him up anyway. After waking the boys up, she hurried to make their breakfast and she packed their lunches. After which she went to their to check on their progress, getting there she met Bolin all dressed up but he looked flustered

”Whats the matter Bolin? ” she asked with a quizzical look on her face

She scanned the room slowly.

”Where is your brother? ” she asked

”bin … Binxing said he doesn want to go to school today ” he said nervously as he tried to avoid eye contact

”Where is he now? ” she was starting to look angry now.

”Hes downstairs, Julius went to get him ” she slammed the door and walked down furiously, they only had a few more minutes and they would be running late

She got downstairs and she met Binxing sobbing, she hesitated, she had planned to scold him when she saw him but now she wasn so sure. Julius was beside him, he was hugging him, he wiped the tears of Binxings face and told him to go get dressed, when Binxing turned around to leave he met Lisa in the corridor, she was upset but she couldn bring herself to scold him anymore.

”Go get dressed ” she said trying to look as angry as she could

Binxing nodded and ran back to get ready, he knew he got off easy this time. When she was sure Binxing was gone she decided to ask

”What was that all about? ”

”He was upset because some kids at his school made fun of his shoes yesterday ” he said. ”They
e all just spoiled brats aren they ”

Julius chuckled.

e just kids, and he does need new shoes ” he said.

”I know ” she sighed.

”Ill get him a new pair before the week runs out, and thanks for talking to him ”. She said she was a little relieved that he had been there.

Julius nodded.

”I have to go get ready for work ” he said

He started to leave then gave her a hug.

”theres breakfast in the kitchen when you
e ready ” she said pointing towards the kichen

”thanks ” he said and left.

As they sat in the bus silently, she couldn help but think about the earful her boss was going to give her, she could be a real pain at times and it was always best to stay out of her radar. She turned to look at the boys, Binxing still looked a bit sad.

”You really shouldn let some little kids make you feel bad ” she said

”They only have as much power as you give them. If you ignore them their words have no power and theyll leave you alone ”

”What if it doesn work ” Binxing said he looked genuinely concerned.

”Well, if that doesn work, I could come over there from work and rough them up a bit ” she smiled.

Binxing smiled too

”but you don look so scary ”

Lisa burst into little fits of laughter

”thats because Im your sister ” she said as she tried to suppress the laughter

”I can be very scary if I want to, remember those kids that used to live next door? ”

”The Feng boys? They used to be such a handful ” Bolin chimed in.

”Exactly, but they stopped bugging us after I scolded them and threatened to tell their parents. They looked so pale that day, and I think the younger brother peed himself ” there was a hint of pride in the way she said it.

They both laughed.

She was happy she was able to cheer Binxing up. It was time for them to get down from the bus.

She waved them goodbye as they walked into school, she was still seated in the bus. The law firm where she worked was just a little drive from their school. She looked down at her watch, it was 8:15 am and she was late.

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