Tag Archives: guilt

Hide and Seek


Photo Credit: A Mixed Bag – 2016

“…18 Mississippi…19 Mississippi…20 Mississippi. I hate this game.”

Pete slid the barn door open just enough to slip through.

“Ugh! It stinks in here. Buddy, come on…just come out!” Silence.

“Buddy! I’m not kidding. It’s creepy in here! I’m going to count to ten and if you aren’t out by then, I’m leaving.”


Pete plopped in front of the tv. After several hours, his mom called from the kitchen. “Hey Pete, didn’t you say you were with Buddy today?”

“Yeah…I played with him. That lame game of hide and seek!”

“Well, I just got a call from Buddy’s mom. He hasn’t been home all afternoon. They’re starting to worry. Where did you say you last saw him?”

Pete slumped under a feeling of dread. “We were in the woods by that old barn. He wouldn’t come out, so I came home.”

Hours turned into days, days to weeks. They never found Buddy. It was years before the authorities were finally able to connect Buddy’s disappearance to a pattern of abductions in the area.

…And years before Pete could come to terms with the guilt. He never played hide and seek again.

kat ~ 9 January 2016
(200 words)

Al Forbes has provided the creepy photo above for this weeks Sunday Photo Fiction Challenge.  You can read some of the other stories, or try writing your own by click HERE to visit Al’s page.

A Confession 52 Years Late…

I have a confession to make…to the boy, I can’t remember his name…the one who sat next to me in the second grade.

I’ll just say it.

I’m the one who stole your Baby Jesus. Snatched him right out of the pencil tray in your desk. How could I not?

It’s no excuse, but I believe I needed him more than you did that day. Even your pitiful tears that made snot ooze over the crest of your lips and into your mouth…that made me flush from my neck to the tips of my ears…could not budge my resolve. I needed your tiny plastic Baby Jesus and I took it. And I told you eye to eye that I didn’t.

I’ve never forgotten this moment of lost innocence when at seven years old, I learned I wasn’t that good girl. Behind my twinkling eyes, freckled nose and curly locks a monster lurked in the dark recesses of my heart. I can think of nothing more heinous than what I did that day. Baby Jesus? That’s how hard core I was when I embarked on my maiden crime spree. It has haunted me for years.

And I don’t expect you to forgive me little boy, who is now a man. I hope you have forgotten it and me. And if it’s any consolation I’ve learned my lesson.

I needed to know about the darkness inside of me so I could choose the light, so I could learn not to judge.

I never stole again after that day. And when I have fallen victim myself to petty thievery I have learned to let it go. To say a silent prayer even, for the perpetrator.  Whatever it was that captured their fancy, I am convinced that they needed it more than me.

kat 31Aug2015

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