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The Braided Silver Chain
"Brenda said, I feel like I am going to pop. It has been 9 months. What do you think, baby sister? What can we do to help this little lady inside of me to come out of hiding?”
Emily said, "They say walking helps. It's a beautiful autumn day. Let's go to the park to admire the colorful trees. Brenda, come on! Please?"
Brenda said, "Okay, let me get my coat." As she put on her coat she smiled and said, "You know I love you. You are going to be a great aunt."
"The air feels so good on my face." Brenda said as she closed her eyes to take a deep breath. Emily was sitting on the park bench admiring her sister. She was so excited that she was gong to be an aunt. A loud noise caught Emily's attention. She turned around to look but didn't see anything there. She turned back around to look at her sister and noticed that she was lying on the ground. Emily ran to her to get her up but she didn't move.
"Brenda! Brenda! Wake up!" There was so much blood. Emily felt dizzy. She could not stop shaking.
Emily yelled, "Help! Someone! Help! A crowd of a people started running over. Emily was crying over her sister's body.
The police and paramedics arrived. They attempted to revive her. Brenda was unresponsive. Emily heard them say that she had lost a lot of blood due to a gunshot wound. Emily yelled, “What gunshot! There was no one around! She was just standing there!” The police officers pulled Emily aside to ask her a few questions. Then Emily remembered the loud noise. The police officers asked her if she saw or heard anything strange.
Emily weakly responded, “I heard a loud noise. I turned around to look where it was coming from and did not see anything. I turned around again to look at Brenda and she was lying on the ground.”
She saw the paramedics lifting her sister up to be put into the ambulance. Emily pushed through the officers, screaming for Brenda.
Emily said, “Please don't close the door. I want to ride with her to the hospital.” The paramedics continued to work on Brenda. Everything they tried to do didn't work. She was still unresponsive. Emily just sat there frantically rocking back and forth.
When they arrived at the hospital, the trauma team was waiting. They told Emily that she could not go any further and to wait in the lobby. Emily kept on trying to convince herself that everything is going to be okay. She imagined the doctor coming out saying,”You can go back and see her now. She is going to be fine” Her imagination turned into a nightmare when the doctor came out. By the look on his face, she knew that it was not good.
“No! Oh my God! No!,” Cried Emily.
The doctor said, "I'm sorry, there was nothing we could do."
Emily asked, "What about the baby? Did she survive?"
The doctor said, "yes."
Emily said, “can I go in to see my sister? I want to see her and the baby, please?" The doctor motioned her to go into the room and that the baby was in the maternity ward.
Emily started walking slowly into the room. All she could see was her sister quietly lying there. She still looked beautiful as if she was sleeping. She touched Brenda's skin. It was cold and stiff. She was gone. Emily gave her sister and tear stained kiss on her forehead. The braided silver chain that she had given her sister was covered in blood. She removed it and put it around her neck, She turned around to walk away. Before, she passed the threshold of the door, she fainted.
When she woke up, her family was standing over her. Her sister's husband, Brent, was holding the baby. Emily lifted her arms out to hold the baby. He gently placed the baby into her arms and started crying.
She asked, “What did you name her?
He said, “I named her Emily. Brenda and I was trying to find names for her and we decided to name her after you. Look at her, she has your eyes.”
"Emily held her niece tighter and said, “I love you! We are going to have so much fun together.”
Three months later, the police found out how Brenda was killed. She was in the line of fire from a gang shooting. A senseless act of violence. Emily was furious. Still grief stricken, she wanted revenge. She wanted to hurt everyone that killed her sister. She was in a rage. She started throwing things and tearing up the room. She was on a rampage. All of a sudden, the braided sliver chain fell from her neck. Emily sat down and cradled the chain in her hands and began to cry. She thought to herself, “Violence is why my sister is no longer with us. I have to be better than them. I have to reach out to others that have lost loved ones to due a senseless act of violence.
Emily began to reach out to other families. She held a candle light vigil in the place her sister died. She asked everyone to bring a picture of their loved one so they could be remembered. When everything was said and done, she passed out braided silver chains. She told them, this is a sign of unity to help break the chains of senseless acts of violence.