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That no life lives for ever;
That dead men rise up never;
That even the weariest river
Winds somewhere safe to see
-from The Garden of Prosperine by Algernon Charles Swinburne

Message to Readers

Hi! I would love any and all feedback on this piece. I'm thinking of expanding on it and I want to know what everyone thinks! Thanks! <3

The Boy in Handcuffs

September 26, 2020


    The sound of gravel crunching under tires jolts me awake. I've trained myself to wake up at the slightest noise that might threaten danger. I haven't slept soundly in years. Peter grumbles when I shake him awake, but he soon realizes what's happening and blows out our lone candle. 
    "Quickly." I whisper to Peter as he sweeps our few possessions into our raggedy backpack. But as I scrape wax off the floorboards so that we leave no trace, I notice a difference in the noises outside. The voices are louder, rougher, the cars heavier and more impenetrable. There's a small crack in the rough boards of the house, and I risk a glance through it. I know immediately that this is not Social Services.
    The cars are black and sleek, military grade. Armoured. The Social Services cars are mismatched, but all with the same blue symbol stamped on the side. These cars are imposing and surrounded by a dozen people wearing matching black suits and fedoras tipped to the side so that their faces are put in shadow. Even through a quick glance my mouth dries and I can tell that these people mean business. They are most certainly not Carolyn from Social Services, who pleads for us to go with her, says that we will be safe and happy.
    I'm just about to whisper to Peter that we need to leave, now, when I see him. A boy, about 16. My age. He's wearing a gray hoodie and jeans, but his hands, his whole hands and wrists, are encased in shiny silver handcuffs that glow ever so faintly red. Before I can turn to leave, to grab Peter and run away from this terrifying and confusing scene, he sees me. His haunting brown eyes widen and in them I see a terrible amount of fear and panic and worry. I know I will never forget those eyes that have lost all hope. He mouthes a single word to me before the people in suits grab him roughly by the elbows and haul him into the abandoned house across the road.


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