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Since the boy had been born, the woman had been paranoid about his life.

She
remembered looking at herself in the mirror the first time the bump began to form, and
she remembered how filled with joy she had been, how Paul had come up behind her and
wrapped his hands around her stomach.
Smile for the mirror. Embrace, smile, and kiss.
Snapshot.
Perfect.
She remembered how many times she puked over the toilet, and she remembered
how much she hated all those restless nights as her little baby kicked and kicked, and
rolled and spun around in her stomach, but she didnt care all that much, it was her baby,
her first and only, her pride and joy, her sunshine and roses, even Paul could not compare
this was truly her baby. Yes, she remembered how she pushed and pushed hard, felt her
stomach collapse as he spilt out, bloody and screaming into the doctors hands. Ah, how
she looked unto her child in his warm blue blankets and beanie, and she remembered how
he wrapped his tiny hand around hers, and it was then that she knew he was the one, he
was her special one, he was her future, and what she had been waiting for. Her little bird.
At last, Stephanie Wates was a mother.
Then he began to grow, and he began to explore, and he began to experience
(experience was dangerous). She would watch from the porch of the house as he gleeful
little child ran around with Paul in the front yard and watched him fall and laugheven
then, though, her heart bounced as she feared he would get a scrape or get badly hurt on
the sidewalk, or get bitten by a bug.
She could still hear his sweet little laughter through the hall as Paul would swing
him around, taking him up in his arms, and she would hear something bump and her
business in the kitchen would stop as she waited for the cry (the plea!) for her to come
and kiss his booboo. Yes, and she could still feel his soft little skin as she tucked him in,
kissed him goodnight and would run her index finger down the length of his cheek,
seeing him smile in the dark
She had watched with a keen eye, a close eye that dissected both Paul and the childs
every movement. When the boy had turned three, the neighbor children began come
around, and she could still remember the many afternoons spent drinking tea on the porch
or in the house, and she could remember how her heart crashed against her chest in a
mallet like crash every time she heard the thump of the floor as one of the boys fell. The
other women had also wanted to talk about other things, things not related to children, but
Stephanieno, Stephanie was too proud a mother to talk about anything but her sweet
baby child, and just how cute and darling he was. Then one of the other children got to
biting, and that was the end of that on that fine summer day.
When the boy had turned four, Paul started to work double shifts, of course
Stephanie was doubtful at this, and she would begin taking the little child on field trips
out to town as she spied on her husband from under sunglasses and a colorful tarp on her
head, sometimes she extorted to wigs or makeup, anything to get closer, closer, and ever
closer to her husband. It was night when she saw him at the bus stop, checking his watch,
but there was something in his slouch, something in the way that he kept looking around,

he was anxious, he was paranoid. She drove home and put the child to sleep telling him to
stay in bed if he heard a noise. And so the boy obeyed.
When Paul arrived home, she had been waiting in the kitchen, the fluorescence
buzzing as she washed the same dish over and over, turning it over in the watercan you
imagine her water bill?and then stopping as she heard the door slam shut in the main
hall.
Typical of Paul: Honey, Im home! (The audience woops as they get a sight of the
costarring role) Paul takes off his hat, hooks it on the coat tree, and then pulls of his coat
and hooks it to, starting down the main hall to his beloved.
Typical of Stephanie: Hey Paul, how was your day, hon? (And then they whoop as the
camera turns to their leading lady, a big round of applause for the one and only
STEPHINE WATES) And Paul walks into the kitchen, Stephanie whirls around fluidly
like a ballerinaher black shin high skirt billowing out as the air puffs under it, her white
apron tight against her thin waista large blade in hand and smile on her face (and gasp
goes the audience, the laughter stopped short) her lips cherry red and shiny, her hair pent
up with a black and white polka-dotted bow. Paul gasps and takes a step back. Stephanie
looks at the blade and then laughs, but doesnt lower it.
Oh, this, sorry I didnt mean to give a scare hon, and she bobs her head she presses
her lips together and gives a low hummed giggle. you shouldnt have anything to be
afraid of though, babe, why are you so paranoid? Something on your mind? Im sure if
theyre something you need to talk about the blade and I can definitely help you express
yourself. (nervous laugh track) She began to glide over to Paul, as fluidly as she had
turned, the smile painted on her smooth face.
Stephanie, baby, look theres nothing going on, I told you Im
Who is she? Stephanie said softly suddenly and Paul jumped. He was pent up on
the wall right next to the archway that led into the main hall. Who is she? She her voice
raising to a slow crescendo again, still sauntering (gliding) ever closer.
Theres no one Stephanie, youre being paranoidStephanie, listen to me! He
shouted at her, holding his hand out towards her, his heart knocking hard in his chest.
Some would say that Stephanie, like a vampire, heard it and smelt the blood pulsing
through his veins. Her smile widened, and her canines seemed to sharpenor this is what
Paul perceived.
WHO IS SHE? Stephanie screamed. Paul jumped again, and his hand clutching the
light switch, suddenly fell and the light above them flashed off. The kitchen was suddenly
bathed in shadows, and Paul hit the floor, scrambling backwards upon impact. His tie
askew, his hair taped to his forehead with sweat, his eyes bulged as he watched his wife
float into the main hall. Shadows shaded and detailed Stephanies face as she sauntered,
and her eyes shone in the dark light of the night.
Paul was blubbering (you keep it up Pauly, scenes almost done; youre doing great!)
his mouth was trying desperately to form words, but tears and snot streamed down his
facethe face of the guilty. Stephanie frowned melodramatically and shook her head,
making a tsk-tsk sound.
It does no good to lie, Paul, its a sin you know, and sinning is bad. Its a shame,

Tommyll never get to see his daddy come to his ball games or see his daddy grow old.
Its a shame, its a real shame.
And when Paul hit the little table next to the stairs, the vase atop it shattered sending
glass across the floor, and Paul tried to reach for a piece, but the silver blade in
Stephanies fingers had been plunged into his chest in the next moment.
Glistening black blood spewed out from his chest, and began to spill out from his
mouth and the hole where the knife had entered his chest. Within seconds, the dark liquid
had pooled around him, thick and warm. There was blood on Stephanies apron and she
stood, holding the dripping blade in her right hand. She sighed.
See what youve done Paul? You got blood all over my apron, and this was my
favorite one too. Damnnit Paul (Stephanie never swore, not ever), now Im going to have
to throw it in the washing machine and get the stitching all frayed, even then though, the
bloods not going to come off. She let out yet another sigh and shook her head. What a
shame.
Then she felt another presence (some motherly sense) and looked up at the stairs
where Tommy stared down at the scene, horrified, his mouth pulled down and his eyes
slowly moving up towards Momma, who smiled up at him, her teeth white as paint.
Go back to bed, Tommy. Youve been a bad boy, I told you to stay in bed. Now go
up there. No dessert for you tomorrow. She said and Tommy continued to stare
transfixed at the scene. The smile melted form her face, as though someone had washed it
off, and was replaced with a slow grimace. She lowered her killing arm and began to
walk towards the foot of the stairwell, crunching glass under her heel as she started.
Tommy bolted up the stairs, and the grimace as gone, once again taken up by a toothy
smile.
It had taken a good week to really get things running around the house again, to
make up a large very well said web of lies. Stephanie wore black, for she was a widow
now and she needed to play the part, both parts. The part of the spider, and the part of the
mourner. No one suspected that she had killed Paul, as she took Theater in High School
and college, and she was a damn good actress. She played it smooth enough, crying at the
right times, giving the correct answers to interview questions, and none of them bat an
eye. And then it came down to Tommy and his innocence, first broken when Stephanie
gave him her wild death stare with those big blue eyes, cold and hard on him as he spoke.
He lied for the first time then, and Stephanie gave him a good pat on the head with a
double scoop of ice cream and a movie when the police had gone.
Though, if one took away the fragranced candles and the fragrance sticks littered
around the house, you could still smell the stink of the dead as Paul rotted under the
floorboards of the kitchen.
It was when the boy turned six that the nightmares started to come, and Stephanie
could not explain why, truly. For the most part, she had played the part of the good
mother, making sure that Tommy got to school on time, reading him little bed time
stories, and keeping her little bundle happy. Of course, there was no going outside for
him, there was no playing with the neighborhood boys, and there was to be no rowdiness
in that household, she would have none of that. She made sure that if a bad commercial or

program came on the television, she quickly switched it offTommys precious mind
was to valuable to be corrupted by the horrible evils of monster cars and horror films. At
some point, somehow, The Banana Split Adventure Hour and Honk Kong Fooey made it
on that list, but whose to say how and why? The first hit of horror pricked her when she
was baking a pie (a window sill pie, the kind that attracted the flies and the dogs and the
cats, and all the other people around the neighborhood) and as she pulled it from the
oven, there was a groan under her feet, and she turned to stone, the heat of the oven still
warming her arms, and the house deathly quiet.
Another groan, and she slowly straightened up.
Oooooohhh, the floorboards groaned, and she stiffened, gooseflesh pecking her
skin and arms, the warmth of the oven having been absorbed by the frost of the room.
The groan returned, and she came to slowly look over her shoulder, her heart thumping
ever so slightly. Her eyes made their way to the small rug where she had covered the
square of wood, where the metal box that encased Pauls body sat. OOOOOOOOO, the
rug complained, and Stephanie turned around, her hands instantly reaching for the knife
drawer next to the sink.
OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, the rug cried, and she pulled out the blade, the very
blade that she had used to kill him the first timeshe would not mind killing him a
second time. She stared for the rug, the blade in hand, her arm expertly arched, and her
eyes wide as they had been that night.
And then a cry from upstairs made her jump and drop the knife on the floor, it
clattered and she listened for a paralyzing long moment as Tommy cried, and it wasnt
until his little voice plead, MOOOMY! that she was snapped out of her visionthe pie
forgottenand bolted for the stairs.
Mommys coming, Tommy, mommys coming! She screamed up to him and raced
up the stairs, and burst into his room, but he was not there. His bed had been empty, and
she tore the room apart in desperate search for her little bird, and she whirled around
when he heard him again, MOMMY, MOMMY! He cried from behind, and she ran
into the hall, listening for his call again, her heart like a hammer in her chest hit her ribs
like a school belldingadingdingadingadingadingdingdingdingdingand then,
MOMMY, MOMMY, MOMMY! From her room. She was slapping herself mentally
for it not coming to her faster, and she sprinted to her bedroom, where the window above
bed stood ajar, and on the slanted roof was Tommy standing right on the edge.
TOMMY! She shrieked. Tommy, you come to mommy, you turn around you and
come to mommy! She cried out, and then he turned to her, and she staggered backwards
into her dresser knocking over perfumes and lotion bottles as she saw the shimmering
silver blade in his hand, the sunlight making it shine like a star in the night, and his eyes
glowered at her darkly.
Mommy, wheres daddy? I called for daddy? Wheres daddy? Wheres daddy?
Wheres daddy? Like a broken record he said the words over and over, a strange chant,
and it grew into a rising screech, WHERES DADDY? WHERES DADDY? WHERES
DADDY? And she slapped her hands over her ears, and pulled down, trying to pull them
off, and screamed out

She had awoken in the middle of her sheets, her nightgown strangling her breasts and
her heart crashing against her rib cage. She swallowed hard and closed her eyes, trying to
wash the image out of her head, but it would not goWheres daddy? Said a voice
from the door on the other side of the room, and her heart stopped as she pulled her
fingers from her eyes, making a wide enough slit to see Tommy dressed in his little blue
nightwear, his bear in his hand, standing at the doorway, casting a long shadow out into
the hall as the moon shone into the room.
Stephanie had shook her head, and cried. Something caught her nosethe stench of
death. The stench of death was as irremovable as the blood that still stained her apron.
When the boy was seven, she rumbled with the school to get him home schooled, and
she won after a furious rant and a threat to kill them all (the cops got involved, and she
played blonde, claiming to not recall saying any of the audacious things the principal and
several of the teachers claimed she said; Tommy kept his mouth shut, and once again, ice
cream came next). On the way home with the school books and things, Tommy asked
why he couldnt go to school with the other boys and girls, and momma explained,
Because, the other boys and girls havecooties, and they can kill you, and I love you
Tommy, and I want you to stay alive. I also want you to be with me, I want to make sure
that you get the right education so that you can be smart, and I want you to be, most of
all, happy. She smiled at him benevolently in the rear view mirror, but he did not return
it back.
After ice cream, they walked through town and she bought him a box full of new
clothesclothes that he would wear mostly around the houseand they passed a pet
store, to which Tommy exclaimed excitedly to his mother, Look mommy, puppies! Can
we get a puppy? Can we? Can we? (God, she thought, is my love not good enough? Will
the kid ever shut up?) Can we? Can we? He was jumping, at last when she couldnt take
his squealing anymore, she drug him into the pet store and they got a small little Labrador
Retriever, and Stephanie had to admit that the puppy was cute with its smooth golden fur,
and those big glimmering eyesso much like Tommys ownand how it licked its nose
(and the crowd goes, awwwww) all made her heart a little warmer.
Tommy loved the puppy, and played with it constantly, even when she was trying to
teach him in the living room, the puppy would come bouncing in doing something silly or
knock over something, or peeing (all of which she had to clean up in the end), and she
wouldnt be able to get an honest session out of him, and she would go into the kitchen
and begin to heavily knead dough (one of the reasons, the house no longer needed a
fragrant, as it always faintly smelt of pies), and then she would bake pie and cake and
brownies and cookies, and before the day was done, Tommy couldnt and wouldnt go to
sleep because hed had so many sweets. She soon turned it into a business, as her own job
was beginning to drop off and she needed to keep the rent paid; she would not live with
her mother, no, she would not let that woman spoil her Tommy, her precious, precious
Tommy.
It had been the middle of the night, and Tommy wouldnt go to sleep. Stephanie had
put up with it simply because there was truly no harm in it. She would be working at

home now, maybe going out to get business cards and put up posters and things of the
sort, and Tommy being home schooled made the whole thing a whole lot easier. There
was no need for Tommy to go to sleep early or any time soon reallythough that one
parenting book suggested that, based on scientific research, children needed the sleep to
grow, and Stephanie didnt want Tommy to be a midget kid, or grow up to be shorter than
his colleagues likelike himso she allowed him to play with the dogthe dirty, dirty
dog.
The book she was reading was called The Crack in the Plaster, a book of about a
thousand or so pages detailing the events of a girl as she survived an insane asylum and
sweet psychopathic love. She was about halfway through, and the thrill ride had not
stopped since the opening sentenceThe world in which I live in is a gray one, one in
which you either got your eyes gouged out or you took the pills and submitted to the
nursesand she had gone to great lengths to keep Tommy from finding it, for it was a
rather adult book, and she knew Tommy knew how to read, and if he knew the things in
this book, well, he would be corrupted, and she couldnt corrupt him, no, no, no. The
climax of the book was flaming on the page, and suddenly there was a loud barking from
the room down the hall. She ignored it at first, but then there was another, and another,
and then bumps and then a crash, and then silence. She slammed the book on her white
nightstand and looked over the rim of her glasses at the door of her room, her hands
already gripping the sheets and the edge of the bed, ready to pounce; she was a tiger, and
from the bottom of her stomach a low growl was building up into a roar. This is the time
when her mind goes blank, when it all fades to whiteness after the fury is over.
She explodes from the bed, and starts down the hall, her pink nightgown billowing
around her ankles, and her glasses forgotten on the bed. She threw open the door and saw
Tommy on the ground next to the guilty little bastard of a doghis paws were over his
nose and he seemed to be quite literally shakingTommy was holding the dog close, and
he was also biting down on his bottom lip hard. Stephanies eyes followed the trail of
glass leading form the top of the low dresser to Tommys foot, where blood was
streaming steadily. Stephanie frowned at her son and then took a deep breath, putting her
hands behind her back. They were balled up in tight fists, her nails dug slightly into the
heels of her palm, and a small stream of blood broke from under the skin.
Tommy, honey, what happened? She asked, and investigated the scene further,
finding that the lamp was smashed on the ground, the bulb still in its holder under the
massive domed shade.
Tommy stared at her, and he squeezed the dog harder, his hearth thumped
Stephanie heard it, just faintly and something like Deja vu hit her hardas he held back
the sobs that were preparing to flood from between his lips. Mommy, we-we were just
playing, I promise and I-I took a bad fall, an-and the lampMommy, the lamp it just
feel.
How did you fall? She snarled, her teeth bared, though her face played the
infamous red lipped smile.
Wha? Mommy, Jimmy and I were just playing and eh was running around and I
slipped, Mommy, I slipped! The boy plead and the dog began to whine, for Tommy was

digging his fingers into his side. Stephanie eyed the dog who now met eyes with her from
under its paws, and she cocked her head to the side. Stephanie started for Tommy, and she
crouched over onto her knees. Tommy slid the dog behind him, but kept clutching him.
Stephanie simply looked at her son, and slowly a smile unfolded on her face.
Let me see your foot. She said plainly, all her anger seeming to have evaporated
into the air. This took Tommy by surprise, he looked at his foot, having forgot about it. A
small ring of blood had appeared around it.
He slowly slid his foot towards Stephanie and she slid her fingers along the sides of
it, and then slowly she made her way to the small shard of glass that was caught between
his heel and the balls of his foot. She pulled it out slowly, and Tommy screamed, letting
go of the pup, who shot under the bed. Tommy slammed his hands on the floor, and then
the shard was out and he was still screaming without knowing it (had he been screaming
because it hurt or simply for relief?).
Stephanie held the small shard of glass in her fingers and observed it. It was
completely covered in crimson, and glistened. A small stream of blood started down her
spire-like fingers, and she then put the shard on the ground, slowlyall of it happened so
slowly. Tommy finally stopped hollering and looked at his mommy. Mommy had a sad
smile on her face now, and she reached out to caress Tommys smooth little face.
Sweet Tommy A whisper, so faint, so distinctive of a mother trying not to wake
up her son as she kissed him goodnight long after story time. And then she stood and
went to the bathroom, got a band-aid and bandaged Tommy, putting him to bed.
Can I have Jimmy? He asked, he had calmed down, but he did not yet understand
the full view of his mothers eyes and mind (Paul did, Paul did, yes he did), so when she
shook her head he simply watched her for a long time before turning over to go to sleep.
But his eyes were staring at the little pictures on the wallpaper that lined his room, and he
suddenly heard scuttling behind him as his mother ripped Jimmy from under the bead.
Like another shard of glass had been shoved in his foot, he bit his lip and he restrained
himself from whirling around and jumping to fight his mother and keep Jimmy.
SLAM.
His door was shut and there were sharp barks from the hall. Jimmy cried silently into
his pillow.
The puppy yapped and tried to flee from her arms, but it was far too weak for her,
and she stopped at the top of the stairs, and dropped the puppy who tried to run away, but
he was kicked hard in the ribsa tiny snapand the puppy went crashing down the
steps, hitting the wall and still yapping.
Why wont you shut up? She murmured to herself. And started down the steps. At
the foot of the stairs, the puppy was limping as it tried to get away from her, but still
yapping at her. When she finally touched the first floor landing, she ripped the puppy up
from the floor and flung it into the wall, it howled out and tears burst from its eyes. She
picked up again and threw it again, and again, and again like a tennis ball from when she
was a girl. The dog was half conscious when she plucked it from the ground and dropped
it on the kitchen, hard on its feet. It was whimpering and crying, no longer able to escape
her wrath, and she then pulled her foot back behind her, her nightgown pulling with it,

and dropped it. The dog shot across the kitchen floor and hit the sink cabinet so hard a
crack formed where it had been struck by the dogs side. Blood seemed from the puppys
head, and it breathed wheezily. Stephanie simply stared at the pup, and then turned,
turning the kitchen light outshe had forgotten to turn it off when shed gone off to bed.
The puppy lay there all night, breathing wheezily and trying to desperately to stay
alive, but at some time around midnight, it died, right there, its head sitting in a halo of
dark blood. In the morning Tommy cried over the puppy and pressed his face into the
dogs fur, but then screamed as some of the blood got on his pajamas, scrambling
backwards in the same direction his father had years ago. He finally hit a leg on the table
and began to take his pajamas off. He flung them onto the puppy and criedbut his
hands, his hands were covered in the puppy blood too. He screamed and suddenly his
mother was there, she dropped down onto her knees and was crying to, she put her hands
on either side of his face, and nodded to him. I know, I know, I know baby, I know, its
going to be okay. And she pulled him into her breast for a hug. She closed her eyes, and
through the tears, a smile came. At last, there would be quiet around the house again.
Mom, the ten year old boy said suddenly in the golden Ferarri Testarossa, the hood
up and the A/C on (it was hot this summer).
Yes honey? Said the woman.
I want to go to school, with the other kids. She gripped the leather wheel tightly,
stopping at one of the few stoplights in Littlefork.
No. Was all she had said to him that day.
Why not? I dont like being at home all the time, you dont even let me go outside!
He was shouting quickly and she didnt like this.
Tommy, there is a reason for everything that I have done to you in your life, and I
pulled you from school for a reason.
Because the girls and boys have cooties, he said hotly, his brows turned
downwards into a V. Mom, I know thats not true, Ive been reading a lot these days,
thats not true! Cooties arent even real! He snapped at her.
Damn him for being smart, she swore in her head. I have my reasons, now stop
asking me about it or you wont be getting any candy from the store.
I dont care, we have enough sweets at home, I dont need any candy from the
store. He said, his anger pressed down by his resignation. It did no good to fight with the
woman, he simply threw his arms over each other and over his chest, and stared out the
window as he watched the world began to move again with the green light.
At home, Tommy snuck out to the backyard, and then outside of the backyard and
went into two with the dollar he had. The town was a dangerous place for a little kid like
him, especially since he hadnt truly been out to explore like many of the other kids. He
wandered around for a little while, and then found his way into the corner candy shop
where a bunch of boysleather jackets and Poloswere standing on their seemingly
assigned sides, and when little Tommy entered, he was dazzled by the many colors and
aromas that drifted to the air, oblivious to the two groups on either side of the small
showroom where pop was standing on the shelves near the polo wearing kids, and the
hard candy was near the leather wearing fellows on near the window. Tommy picked up a

bunch of 1 hard candies, and then he made his way over to the main counter where the
fat man stared nervously to the two groups, and then gave his best sweaty smile to
Tommy who picked up a 10 candy bara couple actuallyand then put all the candy
on the counter and slapped his dollar down with a wide smile on his facethat would
teach his mother, yeah it wouldand the man quickly tallied up everything.
As the man did that, one of the leather jacket boys came up to Tommy and crouched
down. Hey kid, you wanna do me a favor for a dollar? He asked. He had Elvis Presley
hair and his eyes were blue as his mommas, but his face was friendly enough.
Sure, what I gotta do? Tommy asked, and the leather jacket boy eyed the polo
shirts on the other side of the room, and then looked back to Tommy.
I want you to go over to where the fancy cars and those big houses are, and I want
you to take this and put it in any of the cars that you want, okay buddy?
Sure, can I have the dollar now? Tommy asked and the leather jacket boy smiled as
he produced by the dollar and the little stink bomb from his the inside of his leather
pocket, and handed them to Tommy who took them both gleefully. The cashier was done
with Tommys purchase and sent Tommy off with a bag and an apprehensive look. He sat
back in his stool behind the counter again and began to pray that no blood would wax his
floor that afternoon.
Tommy started for where the leather jacket boy had told him, and the sun was nearly
down by the time he got to that side of town, with the gated communities and the big
cars, and the people with their hair all big beauty queen style, and their nice shoes
Tommyd only seen such things on his mother, but they lived in that old two story on
Creek Lane, and he didnt like it to much, but he did like these houses.
These houses were covered in ivy, and they had long driveways, and big tall columns
and windows, and bushes and trees all over their front yard, and people sat on their
porches and they drank lemonade and Tommy picked up on a couple of things here and
there, some of them were talking about how much money they made, others were talking
about what they were going to be getting their kids for Christmasit was Julyand
Tommy began to wonder then what he would be getting for Christmas (a little toy robot
and some other stuff, though most of it he already head, he took it anyways).
The streetlights buzzed on overhead as eh finally spotted a really nice car that had no
roof, and he pulled out the little stink bomb in his pocket with his candy. He popped a
Jolly Rancher in his mouth and started across the street. Behind him, some polo shirt kids
were walking, and they were watching him as he climbed up on the little step and then
leaned over into the driver seat. He fell in and giggled a little bit as he pulled himself
back up into the seat, and then imagined himself driving the car, even going so far as to
put his hand on either side of the big wheel and make little race car sounds. The polo shirt
kids were smirking across the seat. Tommy then decided that he needed to get back, and
then his heart leapt.
His mother.
His mother mustve figured out he was gone by now, and she must be horrified,
worried, and prepared to go out and look for him. This made him rip the little stick from
the stink bomb, and he jumped out of the car, and stated sprinting the way he had come,

but with the light of the afternoon having been swallowed up by the pink horizon of the
evening, the enormous Richie-rich neighborhood was suddenly a labyrinth of colonnades
and tall bushes, spiked gates, and shadows. Behind him, something made a pop noise, and
there was a short a gasp.
Tommy looked back and thought he would see some looming green cloud coming
after him, but no such thing appeared, rather a big group of the polo shirt kids were
sprinting behind them angry looks on their faces, and in their handsin their hands little
knives and in one of them, a gun. Tommys heart broke one of his ribs and he let out a
sharp wheeze as he picked up his pace, turning at some random street, panic crawling up
from his stomach and scream began to ponder out with this panic.
Then suddenly, beaming white headlights appeared behind him, and he looked back
to see the face of his mothers Ferrari behind him, and the car screeched to a stop, and like
lightning his mother burst from the roaring car with a large blade in hand and a furious
look on her face. Her hair was a birds nest, almost like cotton candy and little pieces of
spaghetti keeping it straight as possible. She wore her bloody apron, only it was covered
in flour and little pieces of chocolate accent where shed dropped it. The polo shirt kids
whirled around, and one of them had the guts to point his gun at her, but she let out a roar
that made Tommy fall to the floor with fear. YOU STAY AWAY FROM MY LITTLE
BOY! And she pounced just as a bullet spat from the barrel of the gun, but the boy who
wield it was so shocked by Tommys mothers sudden outburst, that the bullet went flying
into the window of some house across the street.
Stephanie landed on the boy who wield the gun, and she bellowed as she stabbed him
once, twice, thrice, four timesFIVE! Blood painted half of her face and the righteous
motherly rage that courses through her burned through even the dark of the night. She
turned to the other boys who stood with gooseflesh bitten on their skin, and their eyes
wide. They dropped their blades and began to stagger backwards as Stephanie rose like
slow smoke rising from a chimney in the winter, and she let out yet another bellow, and
blood split the sidewalk in a long red crack. One of the boys fell, and this time the others
bolted down towards Tommy, who was still staring at his mother, the candy having fallen
out his pockets and was splayed across the sidewalk.
When the entire neighborhood was silent, and the only sound was the soft step of her
mothers feet on the pavement and the low hum of the Ferrari, Stephanie stood right over
her soon, her dress flowing lightly in the soft wind of the night as she glowered down at
him, her face a shadow.
Tommy, the softness in her voice rattled him, but he could not move. Tommy,
where did you get that candy?

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