Friday, August 20, 2010


They always get found, the kids who can do magic. Everyone says so. They always get found. But Billy was good at hiding; he always had been though he didn’t know why. Maybe it was the saying “they always get found” that spurred him to be good at hiding. He wasn’t going to be found, not unless he wanted to be.

Billy wasn’t hiding now, not yet. All the kids were being taken somewhere else tonight. They were all walking, holding hands with a friend in the dark or riding a tricycle or pushing a bike or walking alone. There was a grownup here and there but Billy could only see one ahead of him in the dark.

He looked up; clouds were rolling in fast looking like dirty cotton balls in the night sky, but that wasn’t what frightened him. Up there, was four moons that he could see - all lined up like marbles, but they were close. The first one - the one most directly overhead - looked like a platter on a dark blue place-mat. He reached up and used his fingers to measure. The platter was as broad as half the moon was wide. The next moon had a noticeably narrower platter, as did the next one probably; it was difficult to tell with that one because the clouds were crowding it. The fourth one though . . . . He watched it closest of all. Just before the clouds covered it from sight entirely, he saw the blue platter rush to the center of the moon, generating more clouds in its hurry, and then it huffed all that air toward the earth, aiming somewhere far below the horizon behind him.

He pulled at the sleeve of a girl that walked near him. “We have only one moon you know.”

She looked at him and then at the cloudy sky. “Of course. What are you talking about, Billy?”

Billy looked up again. The clouds covered everything now.

He turned around and started to walk back.

‘They always get found.’

He passed the grownup that was bringing up the rear. “I forgot my coat. I’m cold. I’m going to go get it. I’ll be right back.”

“Well, hurry up or you’ll be late,” said Mrs. Wilson.

Billy started to run

‘They always get found.’

He ran back to the now dark buildings where he and all the others had lived for the last two years, but he didn’t go to his room - he went to his stash. A box of wood chips and a heavy black quilt he’d altered so that he could wear it like a cloak.

‘They always get found.’

It was easier to wear it like a cloak than it was to carry it.

‘They always get found.'

Well, he wasn’t going to be easy to find. Not until he wanted to be found. He ran to a place he’d found months and months ago. It was cold and snow had blown to cover much of it but very little was inside. It would be perfect for now; no one would think to look here - surely, it was too small for anyone to hide in.

A plane flew over just as he was pulling himself into his hole, heading toward where his classmates were going. With a chip of wood in his hand, Billy pointed up with his finger and like he was shooting a make-believe gun “pisu,” he whispered and the plane vanished in a ball of flame. He dusted the ash off his hands and coiled back into his hole.

Yeah, maybe they’d find him, but he wasn’t going to make it easy for them.


Tina D said...

Hi Anna,

I really enjoy your work. Your work is right up my alley for the types of books I like.

Tina D.
Women of Color in Business

Anna L. Walls said...

Thanks Tina. Glad you like it.