Bree looked out the window. The stars glistened in the night sky. Bree knew she needed to close her eyes and go to sleep soon, but she wanted to stay up for just a little longer. She stroked the fur of her teddy bear, which was safe in her arms.

The world was eerily quiet. The roads were empty. The squirrels occasionally looked at the windows to see why the humans weren’t coming out of the houses. (Thanks for caring, squirrels.) The virus had changed the world so much; it was stricken by fear.

But Bree was too young to understand what was going on.

The coal-black eyes of her teddy bear shimmered.

Bree gazed into the tiny spotlights that illuminated everything in the world. Then she opened her mouth and sang:

When you wish upon a star

Makes no difference who you are

Anything your heart desires

Will come to you

If your heart is in your dream

No request is too extreme

When you wish upon a star

As dreamers do

Fate is kind

She brings those who love

The sweet fulfillment of 

Their secret longing

Like a bolt out of the blue

Faith steps in and sees you through

When you wish upon a star

Your dreams come true.

Bree picked up a paper airplane from the pile on her desk. She grabbed a pink scented Mr. Sketch marker and wrote, I wish that the stars will light up the darkest day.

Then she opened her window and threw the airplane out. The wind offered the airplane a ride and the plane grew smaller by the second. Going… going… gone.

Bree closed the window. She crossed the room and turned on the night-light. Then she turned the ceiling light off. She closed the door, crawled into bed, and gave herself into the world of dreams.


  1. Joanna, this story merges fiction and reality in a way that is compelling and urgent. The imagery of Bree’s bear, the flight of the paper airplane, and the stars are beautiful.


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