For A Few Centimetres More

Time was now running out. If he didn't find a solution within the next ten minutes, he would be too late. And it made him so angry. He wanted to be the first one. Any time now, Janina's mother, sisters, friends could come through the door and into the lift. Then it would be too late. He had to be the first. Surely then she would notice he loved her more than all the others put together. Enough to save up every hard-earned penny he had to buy her the platform shoes she had been dreaming about for months. Enough, to race away from school the moment the bell rang, skip his dinner and surprise Janina at the flat she was looking after for her sister. When she saw him, when she saw the shoes he had bought her, surely then he'd no longer be little Peppe, the smallest boy in the class. Then she'd learn to look up to him with pride and he'd sweep her up off her feet and carry her off into the sunset.

But one small problem remained; one he'd not bargained on. He couldn't reach up to the top buttons in the lift. He tried everything. He'd even ridden up to the eight floor - as far as he could reach - hoping he could walk the four other floors. But as at the bottom the doors to the staircase were closed firmly, as it was being renovated. Jumping up and down had helped a little, but even then he only managed floor ten. What on earth was he to do. He didn't dare ring to ask anyone to help him as they'd surely never believe his little story.

He went back down to the ground floor to see if he could find anything to stand on. The bins in the cellar were far too big and heavy for him to move. Maybe someone had left a bike in the shed but that too was firmly locked. There was nothing for it. He'd just have to wait until one of the others came to visit Janina; he'd just have to remain little Peppe, the kindest boy in the class as Janina called him, but not the greatest.

Picking up the bag with the shoes he shuffled towards the entrance when the idea struck him like a flash of lightening. Of course, he'd have to undo the paper he'd taken so much care to wrap the shoes in. But if he was very very careful... Maybe?

In no time he had the parcel open and was taking the shoes out. He pulled his own off without bothering to undo the laces, and placing them in the lift underneath the buttons he put his own little feet into those gaping holes, he stretched up. With the tips of his fingers he could just about touch the bottom of button twelve, but not far enough up to push the button. He stretched a bit more, but still didn't make. Closing his eyes he counted to three and jumped. This time it worked, and the lift trundled off making its way up to the twelfth floor. The hero was coming to claim his damsel.


Hooray for Peppe! This story is fantastic. I love the hero using all his might to slay his modern dragon and reach his damsel. Such an uplifting story (please excuse the pun).

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