A Single Wish Part 5

January 3, 2010
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*By the time I had stopped running the open landscape at home had turned into a dense tree-like atmosphere. It was quiet, but the sun was slowly going down and the temperature was dropping. I had worked up a sweat, but I didn’t feel remotely tired. I looked up to the sky. It was a pale blue and there were absolutely no birds in the sky. I probably shouldn’t have run off like that but I needed time just to myself. I didn’t know where I was exactly but I knew I wasn’t too far from home, far enough though. I sat down on an old log and looked at my surroundings. There were trees of course, but there was stream trickling water and if you were silent enough you could see little chipmunks dashing in and out from the tree roots. It was comforting knowing that I wasn’t the only one out here. It definitely felt like that. I felt hollow. I had no idea how everything was going to work out. It was maddening. “Maybe if I stop thinking everything will go away, but I doubt it.” I chuckled remembering one of my dad’s sayings. “It does no good putting it off, just get-er-DONE!” he had said continuously. Just thinking about his remarks made the flame ignite once again. I jumped up and ran over to the nearest tree. I had no idea what I was thinking, but I just started swinging punches at the tree. The pain sure kept my mind off my father.


After I couldn’t take any more of the pain, I started walking. Even though my hands killed me I felt lighter. It was as if a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I hurried into a jog. It was getting darker by the minute and I felt as if I had worried my mother enough.


I had been only jogging a few minutes when I first spotted the lights at the house. I ran up to the front door and when I opened the door it was pure chaos. Rebecca was calming Matthew and John and Mother was silently crying in the corner. Alice was nowhere to be found. Mother finally noticed I had entered the room. “Eric! Is Alice with you??” she demanded. “No,” I replied. I was confused. “She’s gone. I think she went after you. You know the woods better than me. Eric, can you please find her? Please?” she begged. “Of course I’m going. I’ll be back with her before you know it.” I promised. She came up to me and embraced me in a tight hug. “Please be careful. I don’t want to lose either of you.” As she let me go, Rebecca handed me a sandwich and a lamp and with that I bounded out of the house.


I turned the lamp on and ran towards the forest. If I knew my sister, I knew that she wouldn’t like getting lost. She always did something to prevent that. Just as I was looking, Lassie bounded over to me and tugged my sleeve. As I bent my head down I spotted a flash of red. “She must have tied the string onto the tree,” I said under my breath. I picked up the string and I followed it into the forest with Lassie at my heels.

There was a big difference between being in the forest during the day and being in the forest at night. There were a lot more shadows, a lot more sounds, and a lot more animals roaming around. That was the part that made me the most nervous. “Alice!!!” I yelled. But no call answered me at all. The string was still going on so I hoped that she wasn’t too far away.


Lassie and I kept trudging on. The path that Alice was taking was swerving more and more to the stream. Every minute that passed I got more and more anxious. Even Lassie seemed a little nervous.


I looked towards the ground and I spotted hoof prints in the dirt. They looked roughly the same as a horse’s. Did I ever hope that Alice would be okay.





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