One of my earliest memories was of my mother. Her almost shoulder-length, ivory-black hair covered her thick eyebrows. Her eyes, large and black as coal, were filled with warmth and love. Her tall figure bent down to pick me up and give me a peck on the cheek. I was but a small infant, red-faced and blurry-eyed, unable to walk properly. Putting me in a highchair, she would feed me porridge, which I would make a disgusted face at and refuse to eat. She would patiently feed me until I finally gave in.
I toddled up the steps of the playground and walked unsteadily to the slide. Travelling down the slide at top speed left me with a feeling of exhilaration. Craving for more, I repeated the process, until finally, I was exhausted. Sitting at the bottom of the slide, I gazed at the sky, building sandcastles in the air. All of a sudden, a thundering like a stampede if wild gazelles drifted into my ears. I looked around, seeing a herd of older children charging towards me. I fled in terror.
I sat on the soft, plush sofa, gazing at the TV screen in front of my eyes. The images changed continuously, fixing my eyes on the flickering screen. At lunchtime, my stomach grumbled its protest at having to stay empty, but I ignored it, unable to tear my gaze away from the screen. Suddenly, all the colours and shapes turned into pure blackness, save for the reflection of my angry mother. I whipped around only to see my furious mother holding the remote control, glaring at me.
These were my earliest memories.
The dark alley lay before the mouse. Dark shadows crept along the vandalism-filled walls and a lone street light flickered on and off, on and off. Piles of rubbish strewed on the floor let off an unbearable, rancid stench. Every once in a while, a vehicle would rumble by, shaking the floor. “Okay, all I have to do is to get some food. A piece of cake,” the mouse told himself.
As the mouse strode forward confidently, he thought he heard a faint rustling noise, which stopped the moment he whipped his head in its direction. Glancing at the piles of rubbish, he thought he saw a pair of tiny, red eyes, which vanished just as quickly as they had appeared. The mouse twitched his whiskers and quickened his pace waving the rustling off as the wind.
Another rustling sound, this time longer and louder, crept into the mouse’s sensitive ears. His sharp eyes spotted the red eyes again, but this time, they did not disappear and they blinked more furiously than before. The small, beady eyes of the mouse darted left and right and his heart beat rapidly. He backed away slowly, then dashed away as fast as his tiny feet could go, away to safety.
And he wished he had not stepped near that dark alley.