Click to visit the Siren Stories website and read more work by J.J. Barnes and check out her latest novels.

Click to visit the Siren Stories website and read more work by J.J. Barnes and check out her latest novels.

When my little girl is poorly, or hurt, or unhappy, she can’t tell me why. Perhaps this frustration and sadness at being unable to communicate her misery adds to it. Today she has been suffering.

I think her arm is hurt. We have checked her all over; pulled, prodded, poked and squished, but nowhere seems to be hurt, but sometimes when she moves her arm she wails in abject despair. She is avoiding using it, she won’t hold things with that hand and won’t wave or gesticulate with the arm, but there seems to be no sign of injury or damage.

Being a child of normally pleasant disposition, the change in her today has been noted by everyone. I took her to the pool to have our daily swim, an activity she generally regards with great excitement, but as soon as I tried to take her top of she started crying a miserable and pitiful cry. She was instantly swooped upon. Women who I only vaguely recognised cried out “Rose, darling what’s wrong? You’re never unhappy you’re such a happy little girl?” “What is wrong? Is she sick? Is she hurt?” was demanded of me and I didn’t know! One lovely lady ran off to get her some toys to play with, another offered to get her a drink or something to eat.

We didn’t swim, she was just too unhappy. Though the fact we weren’t going to swim seemed to induce more unhappiness. As I tried to strap her back into her buggy whilst she cried, one of the members of staff, who is well known for not being keen on children (even Miss Rose), came rushing over to try and distract her and ask what was wrong and whether I needed anything for her. Bless him.

I very much enjoy this stage, and am in no rush for her to grow or change. I enjoy this stage, as I enjoyed previous stages, and do not want to push her along in her development but let it come naturally. However, if she could learn to talk a little more, learn to tell me what hurts and why, things would be much easier for both of us. I have been assured by my mother, the well respected doctor, that she has probably slept on it funny or walked into something and hurt it, so not to worry. In my head she is obviously dying or suffering from some severe life altering damage to her arm that could see her paralysed within the week. If she could say “Mummy, I hurt my arm when I climbed on my rocking horse in an effort to scale the window to try and shout NEENAW at the passing ambulances more audibly, but fell off and knocked it on the box of bricks that I had just smeared in Weetabix” then I wouldn’t need to worry. I could just squirt more calpol into her, remove the rocking horse from the window, clean up the Weetabix, and sleep soundly knowing my child isn’t broken.

You can check out all my contact info an links on www.jjbarnes.co.uk, I’m on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram so you can get in touch on there, as well as find links to all my work. There’s also www.sirenstories.co.uk which has all the work by both myself and Jonathan McKinney and loads of extra content such as background stories for different characters. If you want to subscribe on Patreon, its just $1 a month to help support our work and it also grants you access to our extra podcast a week, you can go to www.patreon.com/sirenstories.

Thanks as always for reading, and I’ll speak to you soon I hope!



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