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7

Lottie’s whole story

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Once upon a time, near a big but calm river, there was a large colony of otters. These animals are known to always live in pairs. From birth, in fact, an otter is predestined for one and only one soul mate, with whom to hold hands forever. Soul-mate otters are born at the same time in different families. It happens that one day two otters are born. The female is healthy and strong, the male is apparently lifeless. The law of the otters is very clear in these cases. The elderly leader of the colony sentences that an otter can not stay without their soul mate. Therefore, the healthy baby otter must end up like the other one. The leader points to a cliff. The otter's father steps forward in despair, begging for mercy for his cub. Suddenly he hears a hubbub in the distance. He sees two pairs of humans chatting in the shade of a tree in the middle of the park not far from the river.

One of the couples is holding a newborn baby, the other is not. The father otter gets an idea. There is a waterfall with strong and irreversible magical powers that can intervene, in exceptional cases, to resolve situations that would otherwise be unsolvable. The father otter begs that his cub be immersed in the water of the waterfall and transformed into a human. She will thus be handed over to the couple without a baby and may have the chance to find her soul mate in another form. The elderly chief, after several attempts, finally agrees. But he warns: the action will be irreversible. The baby otter will remain human forever.

As the father plunges the baby otter into the water, he notices that the two couples are greeting each other. In a hurry, he dips the baby only up to her forehead, leaving out her head’s hairs. The baby otter thanks a human appearance, except for the tuft of white hairs on her head. Mother and father otters leave their daughter in a leafy cradle, clearly visible. They position themselves behind a bush to make sure their daughter is picked up by the human couple.
At one point, however, a stroller pops out from behind the tree near which the two couples were talking. The two humans already have two small children. The two otters are shocked. They try to retrieve the baby, but it is too late: the humans have found her. The wife, fascinated by the big eyes and the tuft of white hair, begs her husband to take the baby home with them. They leave together, under the worried eyes of the otters.
The little girl, named Lottie, grows up with her new family.

Everyday Lottie and the twins share their life together. They are all loved, but it's clear that the parents consider the twins their real children. The four of them have a strong bond. The parents always help the twins in their everyday activities and are very present. Lottie, oftentimes, has to act very independent. Even going to school, she never gets one last goodbye, as the parents and the twins share before entering their class.
In her classroom, although most of the children never lose a chance to laugh about her strange hair, that are now longer and with the white strip much more evident, Lottie seems to have some friends she can rely on and have fun with.

Until one day, the teacher says: ok children, let's play a game now. Hold the hand of the kid you want to be best friend with. Everyone in the class holds hands but Lottie. No one has chosen her.
Lottie goes home crying. She thinks about her family and friends. Everyone she knows has a special person to be with: her friends, her parents, her twin brothers. She goes in front of the mirror and looks at her white strip: she is different from anyone else. "Why am I different?" she cries.
She heard some voices. She go downstairs and hears her parents fighting because of her. They are worried, they know she is not like the others and they are thinking if they did the right choice taking her home when they found her in the woods.
Lottie can't believe their words. She didn't know she was found as a baby. Now she knows she is not really part of that world. So she decides to leave.

Her parents can't find her in her room. The mother is worried, while the father seems relieved.
Meanwhile, Lottie arrives in the woods where she was found. It's night. She is terrified. At one point she notices a pair of eyes hidden in the bush. Lottie screams, startling whoever is watching her.
Day comes. Lottie wakes up. She arrives at the banks of a river and discovers an entire colony of otters. The thing that immediately jumps out at her is that they are all in pairs and holding hands. Lottie watches them in amazement.
At one point she sees an otter looking for its mate. He reaches out his paw toward one then the other, but finds only rejections. The scene is the same as Lottie's at school.

An older otter approaches the isolated otter, followed by all the others. With a gesture he orders the otter to depart from the group. The sad and frightened otter runs away.
Lottie chases after him. The otter is much faster and has already gained several meters. Lottie tries to run even faster but stumbles and falls to the ground. She begins to cry.
The otter hears her crying and suddenly stops. A blurry memory of Lottie being carried away comes to mind. The otter slowly approaches her. Lottie looks up and this time the otter does not run away.
The otter takes courage and strokes her wisp of hair. Then it decides to stretch out its paw. Lottie hesitantly does the same. The hand and paw meet. Lotti and the otter look into each other's eyes as if they recognize each other. They both smile with emotion.

Team:
Tamba team
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