December Boys

Maps ran along the rocks trying desperately not to fall. He had to help, he just had to. Without thinking he jumped into the water and felt something hit his head as he attempted to swim to Misty, but he didn't even acknowledge the pain. Maps kept going under because he lacked the skill and knowledge of how to swim.

"Look at us we're swimming!" Maps yelled to Misty.

"I'm drowning!" Misty screeched, out of breath.

"Hold onto me and catch your breath."

Misty clung to Maps shoulders in an attempt to suck in oxygen. It was unsuccessful when Maps began to sink too. It came to the point where they were both descending to the ocean floor where they did not want to go. Maps felt as if he was asleep and Misty was feeling the same way as a result of their brains getting no oxygen.

For a few moments they kept their eyes shut as tightly as they could but slowly they began to open. There before them was a glowing figure in the water with them…it was the Virgin Mary. Wide eyed, Misty took in her image while Maps reached out to touch her. A thought crossed in the back of their minds, we're dying. But they were at ease knowing they would soon be with the Virgin Mary.

Then out of nowhere a hand seized Maps' and Misty's shirts and yanked them to the surface. It was Fearless. He had rescued them. Holding on to the life preserver for dear life they were pulled to the shore. In a haze they were pulled up onto the warm sand by Sparks, Spit, and the fisherman. Maps didn't make a single attempt to raise his head or even move he just laid there, eyes closed. This worried Fearless and his friends. While Fearless carried Misty who was still in shock into the house, Spit and Spark knelt beside Maps and shook him.

"Maps! Are you okay?"

Maps didn't answer he just opened his eyes and nodded slightly then closed his eyes again. Sparks and Spit looked at each other than tugged on Maps arms to get him into a sitting, then standing position. After slinging each of Maps arms around their shoulders they braced themselves against his weight because he was leaning fully on them. Slowly and clumsily, Spit and Sparks made their way to the stairs of the house where they were met by Fearless yet again. Apparently he wasn't going to wait for them to make their way up the stairs because he promptly picked up Maps and, like Misty, carried him into the house then into their bedroom.

Maps had felt himself being lifted and opened his eyes so they were mere slits. He was being laid down on his bed.

"Maps talk to me, are you okay?"

He didn't answer.

"Maps!" Spark and Spit had heard Fearless shout his name and rushed inside. But still Maps laid still on the bed. Worried they ran over and shook him quite harshly.

"Maps open your eyes and look at us now!" yelled Fearless.

Slowly but surely he opened his eyes yet again looking at the ceiling them back at them. He looked so tired and fragile. Then they noticed the gash on his forehead right at the hair line and looked at each other with looks of worry plastered upon their faces.

"Maps can you talk to us son?" said Fearless

"I'm tired, my head hurts…" he whispered

"I know son, can you sit up for me so I can take a look at it?"

Watching Maps struggle to get on his elbows, Spit and Sparks helped him. Sparks sat behind Maps and pushed lightly on his back and supported his head, and Spit held onto his shoulders and pulled gently forward getting him into a sitting position, he had closed his eyes again and seemed to have fallen asleep. Maps slumped backwards onto Sparks who wrapped his arms around his chest to keep him from falling off the bed and causing any more damage.

Fearless stood from the bed to look more closely at Maps head. It was about a 3 inch gash on the left side of his forehead…he must have hit his head when he jumped in to save Misty he thought to himself and he was willing to bet that being hit repeatedly on the head my Misty hadn't helped much.

Now it made sense, the gash he saw was the result of Misty hitting him in the head and what made it larger was when he hit his head on the rocks. So that meant he was unconscious not asleep.

"Maps! Maps wake up!" Spark, Spit, and surprisingly Misty yelled

Misty hadn't sustained any injuries so now he felt guilty about Maps risking his life trying to save him when he himself couldn't swim either.

"Boys I need you to be really quiet okay. Maps is hurt."

All the boys nodded swiftly and Misty began to cry.

"It's my fault that Maps is hurt isn't it?"

"No it isn't Misty he chose to go in after you and he knew the risks." Said Fearless

Misty nodded but still cried silently.

The orphan boys refused to leave Maps side the entire afternoon. They looked at him and the realization that Maps was years older than them and he acted as more of a big brother, really sunk in.

"Hey Misty?" said Spit


"What did Maps do when he got to you?"

"He swam over and told me to hold onto him and catch my breath."

"How did he stay floating, he can't swim."

"He didn't stay floating he sank while I held onto him and he stayed under until we were pulled out by Fearless."

"Really he did that for you?"

"Yeah it surprised me too."

For the rest of the night the boys were silent. Checking on Maps every hour to make sure he was okay.

In the morning Spit walked over to Maps bed, he was just starting to wake up.

"Hey guys get over here Maps is waking up!"

"My head hurts…" whispered Maps yet again

"Yeah we know just stay awake okay?"


Sparks ran to get Fearless and bring him over for they had no idea what to do next. While Sparks was gone, Maps tried to get up off of the bed and almost fell to the ground if not for Misty and Spit catching him.

"I'm dizzy guys."

"You hit your head when you jumped into the water after me."

"Did I?"


Right then Fearless walked into the room followed by Sparks.

"How you feeling buddy?"

"My head hurts and I'm dizzy"

"I would think so after what happened. I want you to listen to me carefully. I want you to stay put for today and try to stay up for a little bit. That means no exploring the caves, no walking on the beach, just lie down and rest for today."

"We'll stay with you Maps!" said Misty

"Yeah we can play some card games!" Spit chimed in

Maps sat back down on the bed and rubbed the sleep from his eyes.


"So Maps…how are you feeling?"

"Tired…" he said as he closed his eyes.

"Hey, Fearless said you have to stay awake for a little bit." Said Misty


As Misty, Spit, and Sparks talked about what they were going to do tomorrow Maps just looked out the window, his eyes glazed over. He didn't even notice when all three left to go talk to Fearless.

"Why is he acting like that?" asked Sparks

"I bet he's just trying to get attention! So he'll have a better chance at adoption" yelled Spit as they walked to where Fearless was.

"Hello boys." He said calmly

"What's wrong with Maps?" said Misty getting right to the point.

"I think he's still in shock and still pretty shook up about what happened. He's also still recovering from his injuries. Why what happened?"

"Nothing happened, he just seems different." Sparks said.

"Just give his mind a little while to catch up to his body, okay?"


And with that all four went back to Maps who had already fallen asleep in the five minutes they had been gone. About three hours later he woke up and slowly made his way to the living room where everyone was praying… for him apparently. At the sight of him all three boys jumped up from their seats to help Maps into a comfortable spot. After he was seated they continued.

"Lord give us strength in this most difficult time, and watch over young Maps. Amen."

"Amen." Spit, Sparks, and Misty said simultaneously while often looking out of the corner of their eye at Maps who still looked in a daze.

"Maps dear why don't you go lay down." Suggested Theresa

"No I'm fine." Said Maps weakly.

And with that they all got up to help Maps get to his feet, who didn't want to go to bed but thought it would be best. He simply waved them off and got up with great difficulty and walked back to the room. Two days later Maps was allowed to go outside and his eyes started to regain their once bright sparkle. With Sparks holding onto his right elbow and Spit holding on to his left they made it outside with Misty following close behind seeming to watch Maps like a hawk.

"How are you holding up?" asked Spit.

"I can walk by myself you know."

"Yes we know, we just don't want anything to happen."

"Fine, I just don't like being babied."