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As Mel picked up the phone, my freshly bitten fingernails dug into the wooden carvings that decorated our antique chaise lounge. But the look he gave me after a few seconds made my heart sink for the gazillionth time that evening. Why weren't they calling? As he hung up the phone, Mel let out a long, long sigh. "It was Ms. Connelly, she wants to know if we have her ladder still, go and check won't you?" Mel's voice sounded bored.

I was about to leave our living room when the phone rang once more. This time, there was no disappointment on Mel's face.

"Dad!" cried Mel. "What's going on, is Mom OK?" Before my father could answer, I was on the kitchen phone shooting out questions a mile a minute.

My father's hearty laughter boomed from the phone, "Your mother is fine, children, and so is your new brother, Zachary."

I swear that when I heard those words, the sky lit up. My new brother! A long eight months ago, our parents had told us that we should expect a new addition to the family. Since then life seemed to drag, waiting for my new sibling. And now, now he was alive, a new child in the world. My brother.

Zachary new baby
Tears of joy streamed down my cheeks as my father offered him to me

Mel revved up his red Honda and we were on our way to the hospital. I sat in the front seat, looking out of the window and imagining my new brother. Zachary would have lovely, chocolaty- brown skin, with jet-black curls sprouting up all over his head. He would have sparkling brown eyes, and rosy cheeks. He would be a gorgeous baby He was mine.

"Mom!" I ran into the hospital room excitedly.

"Sam! Sweetie, come look at our Zachary!" I turned around and there, in my father's arms, was the most adorable baby I had ever seen. He was just what I imagined and more. His long, black eyelashes quivered as he blinked and began to stare at me. Tears of joy streamed down my cheeks as my father offered him to me. I agreed, and held out my arms. His soft body was now cradled in my arms and he looked up at me and chuckled with his small little mouth. Too scared of dropping him, I handed him back to my mother who smiled at me warmly.

"Don't worry, you have to get used to holding a newborn."

I played with Zachary for a bit and then the nurse said my mother had to do some tests, so did the baby.

We were about to leave when I felt something tugging on my finger. It was Zachary's little fist. I turned to him with tears in my eyes and whispered, "Don't worry, I'll always be there for you."

Zachary Adanma Raymond
Adanma Raymond, 12
Cascade, Trinidad and Tobago,
West Indies

Zachary Jena Ritchey
Jena Ritchey, 13
Albuquerque, New Mexico