Story Contest 2019 #2 - Highly Commended Stories »

Highly Commended Story - Letters Of Love

“Letters Of Love” by Cheryl Wong Xuan Xuan, SJK Chung Hua No 4, Kuching, Malaysia, is the Highly Commended story in the junior category of the second biannual Short Story Contest 2019.

Cheryl Wong Xuan Xuan is a grade 6 student in SJK Chung Hua No.4 Kuching. She is a class monitor and loves hanging out with her friends. It was her teacher that encouraged her to read books. Since then, she read a lot of books and the Geronimo Stilton series had become one of her favorite books. Her dream is to be a comic writer. Cheryl loves drawing stories about all kinds of relationships and adventures. The story "Letters of Love" was inspired by a Chinese article she had read. It teaches her to be grateful to her loving parents as they always encourage her when she is feeling down.

Letters Of Love

Everybody pushed him away. With a big black birthmark on his face, Thomas never had any friends. He was lonely and depressed, as if the world could never see the light. He used to love acting dramas in front of his mother, but now, he thinks he does not have the right to do so with such appearance.

This miserable life has begun since Thomas went to school. However, everything changed since that evening.

Thomas was sitting on the chair, gazing out of the window while trying to forget the names that his classmates had called him earlier at school. The tree outside was surrounded by dried, lifeless leaves, with bald branches lowering themselves to the ground, as if the gloomy clouds had just bullied them. It was so quiet that only the sound of the wind blowing the leaves away could be heard. A knock on the door broke the silence. “Thomas, here’s a letter for you,” Mom said while pushing the door open. Just as Thomas reached out for the letter, Mom immediately pulled it away and said:” let me read it for you.”

Dear Thomas,

How are you? I’m your aunt. I know that you feel sad because of your birthmark, but you cannot change that. Hence, instead of feeling bad for your appearance, you should stand up for yourself. Go do astonishing things that would change everybody’s thoughts about you. PROVE YOUR5ELF. I believe in you.

Aunt Janice

Thomas felt a wave of warmness in his heart. That night, he carried a smile on his face to his dreams. After that day, Thomas received more letters from relatives, encouraging him to be brave to do what he wants. Mom would read out every single letter, each time with an affectionate expression. Thomas realized that there is so much people caring and loving him. He heard a voice telling him that he should prove himself to the world.

With the encouragement his family had given him, Thomas joined the drama class in his school and had the chance to perform drama in his school during the semester break. Unexpectedly, the whole school cheered for him and praised his acting skills. The teachers later signed him up to represent the school for an acting competition. Despite of his appearance, the judges crowned him as the winner. His confidence grew and he no longer felt inferior to his peers.

After all the things Thomas had gone through, he still received letters from relatives. Mom would always bring letters in and read it aloud to him. Coincidentally, the letters seemed to come very timely whenever he encountered challenges or doubt about himself. As he stared at the view outside the window, he saw the tree once again, but with fresh green leaves at the tips of the branches, which are reaching high into the blue sky. There are thousands of beautiful flowers around the majestic tree. “That tree, is me,” though Thomas.

One day, Thomas went home from school with a tired body. He dragged himself towards Mom’s bedroom door. He opened the door quietly and saw Mom slumping on the desk, sound asleep. There was an opened letter on Mom’s desk. He leaned towards the desk, and saw the letter was unfinished writing. Then, a box with heart shape patterns caught Thomas’s eyes. As he opened it with confusion, letters that relatives sent to him were lying in there. He read the letters one by one, and realized the words were Mom’s writing. Instantly, Thomas understood all of it. He could never forget how these letters of love had changed him.

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