The trees, now dead and limp, hung sadly over my head. It was as cold as the arctic today, colder than it usually is. I shoved my hands deeper into my jacket pockets as my breath clouded, then quickly vanished. As I came over the huge hill that boxed in the playground, I realized that I was alone. Not that this surprised me, I was the only one who went here anymore. As I jogged down the hill, the winter winds were an icy slap in the face. I occasionally looked over my shoulder as if I was being followed. I came to a halt on the faded blacktop, which no longer had bright colors painted on it. The cold air pushed the black and grey swings as if happy kids where on them, but they weren’t. The loud clanking of the basketball hoop chains interrupted the eerie silence. I shuddered then ran straight past them. I sprinted to my favorite play structure, with the monkey bars on top. I pulled myself on top of them and sat, staring out on the blank playground. I ran my fingers over the lining of my torn jacket and swung my feet. I sighed a heavy breath and took a look at my small wrist watch. It was a quarter to 4, and I should have been home a while ago.
I pushed my sleeve on top of my watch again and jumped down from the monkey bars and went looking for the only basketball left after the years. It was scratched and slightly deflated, but the best one there by far. I grabbed it and ran to a basketball hoop to start shooting. I shot over 100 baskets, missing every now and then. I ran around and played with myself, and my usually white cheeks turned a rosy pink. I turned around and went in for a lay-up, and then I realized I was by myself again, as always. I stopped and looked around, and the only thing to comfort me was a squirrel perched on a fence. The color drained from my face again, and I dropped the basketball. I really don’t like being by myself all the time. My heavy breathing was the only sound in the air. I looked down, and my dark brown hair covered my eyes. I sighed again and pushed the basketball away with my foot. Resituating my jacket on my scrawny shoulders, I began to slowly walk up the hill. I looked back on the playground, “I’ll be back later.” I promised myself. Walking at a quick speed, the playground soon disappeared behind me. I kicked leaves out of my way as I walked home, thinking about what I would play with at the playground next.

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