As her mother smoothed the tendril back into her mass of black hair, Eris squeezed her eyes shut.
Please make my hair curly like momma’s, she wished. She wished so hard that she thought she would burst. She was sure it worked this time as she raised one tiny hand cautiously to touch her hair.
She scrunched up handfuls of her pin-straight hair, trying to force it to curl. She let go of it again and again. Each time it fell past her shoulders still straight she sobbed and sniffed a little louder.
Her mother glanced her way and sang softly, “Hush li’l baby, don’t say a word. Momma’s gonna buy you a mockingbird.” as she poured boiling water from the kettle into two identical mugs waiting on the counter. “And if that mockingbird don’t sing, momma’s gonna buy you a diamond ring.” Her mother looked at Eris again and giggled.