By Lisa McCourt Hollar
It wasn't the Eiffel Tower, but Liz liked to pretend the radio tower outside her home was the famous French icon she had once seen in a picture. She'd found it hidden under her mother's mattress. Liz wasn't supposed to be snooping in the room and when her dad came in she'd been afraid. Then she showed him the photo with the note on the back, and he wasn't mad. Instead, he sent her to her room and told her not to come out, no matter what she heard. And she heard a lot that night. Liz covered her ears, but she still heard and she knew it was her fault.
"Did you think I wouldn't find out?" Her dad's voice was a loud boom.
"Where did you find that?" Her mother's voice, scared.
"Where do you think? Who is he?"
"It's nothing. It's over. I promise." Short gasps. Her mother was afraid. Liz pictured her father , his fist pulled back, ready to hit her if he didn't like what he heard.
"It says he wants you to come with him to France. You and Lizzie. Well leave, but you're not taking the girl."
"I'm not leaving her with you." Her mother sounded frightened, but determined. Liz covered her ears when she heard her mother crash against the wall. Then there was a lot of screaming and finally quiet.
The next morning was Valentine's Day. Her mother was gone. Her dad said she moved to France, but Liz knew she was dead. He gave her a box of chocolate and told her she was the woman of the house now. Then he showed her what he wanted her to do. Dying inside, she stared at the lights on the tower and pretended she was in France with her mother.
Word Count: 300