Mei and Ginger part 4

That night, after her daddy tucked her into bed, Mei tried to fall asleep. But sleep didn’t come. She twisted and turned, wriggled and squirmed, and that funny feeling in her stomach was only getting stronger.

That’s it! She knew what she had to do. Jumping out of bed, Mei dashed to her mother’s study where she would be working on her computer.

Knocking, Mei called out in a trembling voice, “Mum, can I come in?” She heard the rush of footsteps as her mother came to open the door.

“Mei darling, what’s wrong? Are you feeling sick?” Her mother rushed her into the study, sat her on her chair and touched her forehead.

Her concern was more than Mei could handle and she began to cry.

“I ate the jam!” Mei blurted out between sobs. “I’m sorry, I’m so sorry. Please don’t hate me. I didn’t want to get Leila into trouble; I didn’t know. I’m sorry.”

“Mei, calm down.” Her mother spoke softly as she rubbed her back.  “I would never hate you!”

Turning her tear stained face towards her, Mei squeaked, “You wouldn’t?”

“I would never hate you. I’m disappointed that you lied, but I don’t hate you.” Her mother reached out and gave her a big squeeze. “I just want you to know that no matter what, you always need to say the truth and accept the consequences.”

Mei nodded slowly and turned when she heard her father clear his throat. He carried a glass of water in his hand.

“Daddy, did you…”

“Hear everything?” he finished for her.

Dad walked through the door. “So, Mei,” he said as he handed her the glass of water, “what do you think the consequence should be?”

Mei gulped down the water and finally spoke. “Say sorry?”

“Yes, and to whom?” he asked.



Mei frowned as she thought. “Leila’s daughter?”

“Actually,” her mother continued, “you need to apologise to Mrs Warren, the lady who Leila makes the jams for.”

Mei scrunched up her nose in disgust. “Her?”

“Yes, and there is also one more thing, Mei.” Mrs Carter looked at her husband and nodded for him to continue.

Mei frowned. What else could be left?

“Since you ate the jam,” her father began, “you need to pay for it out of your piggy bank money.”

Mei gasped, her eyes widening in horror. Not her precious money! She had worked hard for it.

“But, but…” she stammered. One look at her father and she knew that arguing was pointless!

Nodding slowly, Mei silently agreed.

“Tomorrow after school we will go and visit Leila and Mrs Warren. Now go get some sleep. I’ll tuck you in.”

Mei felt better as her mother tucked her in, but there was one more thing she needed to do.

Quietly slipping out of bed as her mother closed the door, she knelt down again to do her prayer properly this time.

“Dear Jesus, I’m sorry for lying, but please help me be a good girl. And please, please help me be brave tomorrow when I say sorry. In your name, amen. Oh, and please forgive me for being angry at Ginger.”

Jumping back into her fluffy yellow bed, Mei was finally able to fall asleep.

The next day after school, Mei and her mother made their way to Leila’s house. She wasn’t allowed to take Ginger because Mother said that he would distract her. Oh how she missed him!

As the car came to a stop at Leila’s driveway, Mei’s heart began to beat a little faster.

 “What a lovely surprise!” Leila’s smiling face greeted them at the door. “Come in, come in!”

After all the hugs and greetings, Mrs Carter finally spoke. “Leila, Mei has something she would like to tell you.”

Swallowing hard, Mei confessed the dreadful tale. When she finished, she was finally able to look up and see Leila’s face. But she didn’t look angry.

“Mei, sweetie, come here.” She motioned for her to sit beside her. “I’m proud that you were honest and brave enough to come and tell me. I know it wasn’t easy for you, but I know that you will never do that again.” Giving her a hug, Leila finally said, “Thank you for paying for what you ate, and whenever I can, I will leave you a little jam, OK?”

 Mei nodded, relieved, and embraced her wonderful Leila.

After a few more minutes of chit chat, Mei and Mother said their goodbyes and made their way to Mrs Warren’s store, The Intercontinental Deli.

Mei made her way inside the deli with her mum, the little bell jingling as they walked through the door. Mmm, it smelt delicious; it was such a beautiful little store too. But, the beauty soon vanished as Mrs Warren appeared.

I wonder if she ever smiles, Mei thought, wishing her precious Ginger was in her arms to bring her comfort.

“How may I help you ladies?” Mrs Warren asked.

Mother informed Mrs Warren that Mei had something she wanted to tell her.

Mei repeated her terrible tale and apologised to Mrs Warren, who wasn’t as nice as Leila had been. Mrs Warren was not impressed and she voiced her opinion loud and clear. “I hope you learn your lesson young lady!” she said sternly.

Mei only nodded and then left with her mother.

Once home, Mei flopped on her bed, exhausted. What a day! She never wanted to live it again, but she had also learnt a valuable lesson. Reaching over to pick up her small, precious moments Bible, Mei opened to the page her father had left marked for her before going to work that morning.  Leviticus 19:11– ‘Do not steal. Do not lie. Do not deceive one another.’ (NIV) 

“Even God says it’s not right to steal or lie.” Ginger stretched next to her and looked up at Mei. He purred softly and she patted him lovingly.

“Daddy also left me another verse, Ginger.” She flicked through the pages. “It says, ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.’ (1 John 1:9)”

She put her Bible down and picked up Ginger, kissing his fur. So far, Mei liked this verse much better!

“God forgives me!” Mei squealed, sending Ginger leaping from her arms. “And He will help me be good.”

Mei hopped off her bed and twirled around in her room – her pleated skirt twirling along with her. She was feeling very, very happy.


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