Stray Pieces

I've got into writing a lot of snippets and short stories for contests lately, so I will be putting them here from now on unless I love one of them so much that I want to make an individual blog post for it. Check back for updates :)

This is for Christ is Write's Monday Minute challenge this week.

Corrie checked the scribbled directions on her notepad and kept walking, the white skirt of her sundress swishing around her legs. This was the right town. A tiny, insignificant, cell service deprived speck on the map. Two hundred four residents and none would talk to her about the Charles’ boy murder. It was only ten years ago. Someone still had to be around who knew about it.
     She walked down the lonely street and stopped when she came to an address she’d read in the old reports. The house was boarded up and locked, with signs warning off trespassers.
     Corrie circled it, looking for a way in, but when none presented itself, she turned to the shed in the backyard. It was a small, squat building. Faded and weather worn, the yard grown up around it.
    The door swung open easily and she stepped in, taking a moment to adjust to the dim lighting. A gasp caught in her throat. Small shelves full of odd items. A rock, seashell, a baseball trophy. A metal whistle hung from a nail. Drawings and signs that read “Clubhouse. Keep out” hung on the walls, curled from age and water leakage. A single light bulb hung from the ceiling, but nothing happened when she pulled the chain.
     A little notebook lay on a chair with a child’s magic wand, turned to a written on page. Corrie stepped toward it, sending a pencil rolling across the floor when her shoe bumped it. She picked up the notepad and tried to read the childish writing.
     She slid the chair toward the open door where the light streamed in and read the wobbly, poorly spelled words.
     They told me not to come. That made me really want to. I didn’t want anyone to die.

This is for the latest prompt over at Teen Words of Steel

     I roll over sleepily, tugging the blankets up closer. A jolt goes through me and I  wake up with a start and look around the tent frantically. What’s wrong? Something is different. I’m alone. No! Where is she? I fling away the blanket that had covered me and my infant daughter the night before, scrambling to my feet. She’s gone! Where is she?
     “Gavin!” I screech, stumbling out the tent flap. People stare as I dash through the refugee camp frantically calling out for my husband. I don’t know where to go. Where could she be? She’s only three days old. Where is Gavin?
     I can see people gathered in a group up ahead. Something is going on up there. Maybe Gavin is there. Maybe he has our daughter with him. Why would he take her without waking me? Why would he take her from me at all?
     “Gavin!” I trip over my skirts and nearly fall. Mud from yesterday’s storm sucks at my shoes. “Gavin!” I force my legs to carry me to the crowd.
     People turn to look at me as I try to get through. Why won’t they move? I catch a glimpse of men on horses, children clinging to them from behind. A baby’s cry pierces the air and my heart nearly stops.
     There’s only one baby in this camp. Only one. Mine.
      “No!” I scream dashing forward, trying to get to them. They’re riding away. They’re taking my baby. “No! Don’t take her! Stop! Gavin!”
     Someone grabs me from behind and starts pulling me back. “No!” I scream, flailing my arms. “Let go! Someone help! Please. I don’t want them to take her!” Tears blind me and I can’t see. Coughs shake my body violently and I fight to breathe. Darkness creeps into the edge of my vision. I can’t control the convulsions going through my body.
      “Stop! Stop, it’s okay.” My husband’s voice sends a jolt through me.
      “They have her!” I sob.
     “She’ll be safe. I promise, she’ll be safe. It’s the only way.” His words don’t make any sense to me as he pulls me away. The crowd closes in again and I can hear hoof falls as the men ride away with my little girl.
     “Gavin, they have our baby!” I try to twist around in his arms. I have to tell him. I have to make him understand. He has to let me go!
     He lets me turn, still holding me tight. “Please, don’t do this. I promise this is for the best.” Why is he pleading with me? What is he saying? We have to go get her back! We have to go before they are too far and we can’t catch them!
     “They took our baby.” I insist. He has to understand me.
     He shakes me by the shoulders. “No. I gave her to them.”

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