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“I have to go with her,” she stated, firmly.

“You know that everyone has a place, and your place is here,” the calm voice responded.

“There is no way I am letting her go down there alone!” she shouted angrily.

The calm in the voice changed to compassion. “It is already decided.”

“Then undecided it!” she urged, “because I am going with her and there is nothing you can do about it.”

“We need you here. There is no reason to send you.”

“If you don’t send me, I’ll go anyway,” she continued, holding her ground. “I’ll turn to the dark side. I’ll do whatever it takes to stay close to her.”

The calm voice laughed because they both knew she would do no such thing.

“This is no laughing matter,” she elevated her voice.

“I can see that,” the voice said, taking her request more seriously. “Fine, you can go but come back immediately.”

“I am not coming back immediately!” she demanded. “I am staying to see her through this.”

“She needs you that much?” the voice changed from calm to concerned.

“We need each other that much,” she hadn’t expected the words to come out with such feeling but they did.

“Fifteen years,” the voice was no longer calm or concerned but spoke with the power of a final decision.

“The whole time,” she begged.

“Fifteen and a half and if you ask for more, I will reconsider you coming back immediately!” the voice spoke with regal authority.

“I’l  take the fifteen and half years with her,” Justine, replied to God. “Thank you.”

“You’re welcome, my daughter.” God replied, smiling.

I was overcome with the urge to write this vignette about Justine for Jentri. It makes me feel better when instead of thinking we were unlucky to only have Justine 15-1/2 years, I think we were lucky to have her for 15-1/2 years.