August 25th

Prompt: She’d only given in because she was lonely

She’d only given in because she was lonely. She didn’t want to hurt anyone but the loneliness was too much for her. He was so easy to take, sitting on the sidewalk, playing with some matchbox cars. He came from a good home, she could tell. The house was a renovated Victorian with a Lexus parked in the open garage. The big bay windows and screen door allowed her to hear and see his mother totally absorbed in a conversation on her cell phone. She parked just down the street near a small park with a playground. It was the middle of September and slightly chilly, school was in session and no children were around. Except Him. He was so sweet and innocent, it was almost too easy. She wondered if it was a set up and as soon as she put him in her car a SWAT team would descend upon her. Pulling away from the curb she felt giddy, this was dangerous and new. She’d dreamt of pulling off many different crimes in her life but never actually had the guts to go through with it.

“Where are we going?” he asked, his head barely peaking over the car door to look out the window.

“We’re going to my playhouse like I told you, silly!” she looked in the rearview mirror and watched as his eyes brightened.

“A playhouse?”

“With lots of toys and games and stuffed animals! You’ll love it!” she said, driving south out of town.

“I want my Teddy,” he said, pouting.

“You wont need your Teddy, you’ll have lots of new toys to play with,” she reached into a bag in the front seat and pulled out a giant chocolate chip cookie, “Do you want a cookie?”

His little eyes widened as he grabbed it out of her hand and began gobbling it down. He was quiet for several minutes. She handed a sippy cup of milk to him and he drank. It wasn’t more than five minutes later that he began to ask her about his Teddy, then he asked her where his mom was. She handed him a stuffed bunny to occupy him with but he refused. He began crying but she knew it wouldn’t last long, the sleep aid she added to his milk would knock him out soon. Sure enough, after several minutes of crying he slowly began to sniffle and hiccup then he stopped crying and fell asleep. Relieved, she continued to drive.

They reached the old farmhouse just as the sky was beginning to darken. The grasshoppers whirred and the light breeze blew the cornstalks softly. She undid his seat belt and carried him into the house. She laid his sleeping form into a small bed she had painted green for him and watched his little chest slowly rise and fall. She stepped back and surveyed the room. Hand-painted dinosaurs filled the bright blue walls of the bedroom, toys were scattered all over the floor, a big wheel sat in the corner. She wasnt sure if he was in to dinosaurs but she hoped he’s come to love them. He’d come to love her as well.

She came out of her daze with a start. That had been well over a month ago. He was finally accepting that he wasn’t going home and she was now his mother. It had been a trying few weeks but she knew what was in store and she’d rather have the wailing, crying little boy over nothing at all. She had arranged a special activity for them that afternoon, once he had woken from his nap they would walk through the field toward the forest where a long stretch of raspberries grew and they would pick them until both their buckets were overflowing. Then, they would walk back to the house and make raspberry turnovers for breakfast the next morning. She had pictured this day for a week, he was finally ready for this adventure.

She heard the floorboard creak and

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