International Writers Magazine - Our Tenth Year:
yelled my little sister.
I couldn't move. I was petrified. Rooted to the spot. My skinny
legs felt as heavy as the grey, graffiti covered concrete tunnels
I could see in the junior school playground. The huge ball of soft,
blue putty I'd been playing with didn't seem fun any more.
I dropped it on
the floor then kicked it towards the red brick wall. It was too late
to put it back into the window frame. I'd been caught red handed and
my sister had already run away and left me standing there.
The figure inside the classroom lifted up her gnarly finger to point
at me as she crept closer to the window. Her black eyes peered at me,
squinted at me, accused me. Her tiny mouth opened wide as she shouted
" I know who you are! You're Amanda Donovan!"
"N.... no, No, that's not me." I stammered as I turned bright
"Yes it is. You live in Allen Close. I heard you scratching at
the windows and thought someone was breaking into the school. You really
scared me! This is vandalism. I'm calling the POLICE right now."
That scared me enough to leg it out of the school. I climbed over the
metal gate, quickly left the school, then ran up the steep hill panting
hard, tears of fear running down my face. My sister, Nicola, appeared
suddenly. I shouted,
"The cleaner said she's calling the police!"
"Why didn't you run you idiot? You just stood there like a spaz!
"...she'd seen me already, so it was too late to run and I couldn't
"But we'd have got away with it. It's your fault! You've ruined
the weekend." she cried running off to her friend's house.
I walked home slowly, dreading the rest of the weekend. It was going
to be so good. Dad was going to treat us while Mum was away at a Cliff
Richard show. Shoulders slumped. I sighed miserably when I realised
there would be no treats now. I passed some ramshackle gardens that
backed onto the school then carried on through the woods at the bottom
of our street. I could hear police car sirens in the distance. Oh my
God, they are really coming for me! I ran again, running through the
woods, twigs cracking under my feet, ignoring the boys playing in the
I ran straight past my house, skidding as I turned right into the overgrown
alley way where the bins were kept and the prickly hedgehogs lived.
My heart was pounding so loudly that my ears were throbbing. I felt
sick with worry. The sirens were getting louder. Shit! My Mum is going
to kill me if she finds out! I sat on a rusty bin for a moment to catch
my breath. Oh my God, This is the end of my life. I'm going to prison.
I'll have to hide, maybe build a camp in the woods and live there for
a while until the police forget about me. I'll get my sister to bring
me food and water.
I had to make a decision. Hide in the alley and wait until the police
left, then pretend I didn't know what was going on, or just go inside
to warn Dad? The police might look for me. What if they found me hiding
here? That could be much worse. Ten years in prison instead of 5 maybe?
I'd seen things like this happen in my favourite T.V program, Grange
Hill! I couldn't stay here hiding. I decided I had to tell Dad before
the police came. He deserved a warning. What if the police thought he
was hiding me?
Breathing hard, face bright red, eyes bloodshot. I opened the rotting
back gate, walked down the path, stepped down the two uneven concrete
steps and arrived at the yellow back door. The sirens were getting too
loud. I took a deep breath, opened the door and shouted for Dad.
"Hello, darling. Where have you been? Auntie Edna called and she
wondered if you wanted to go ice skating with her tomorrow?"
"The police are coming! The police are coming! They will be here
"Don't be silly, love. They're not here for you."
The sirens were right outside the house now. I could see the blue flashing
lights reflected on my Dad's face, on the walls, on the TV. Everything
was flashing blue. I wanted to faint.
"...they are! Dad, I've taken wet putty out of the school window
because it felt really nice like play dough. I did it yesterday and
today I went with Nicola. But the cleaner saw me, she was really angry
and said she was calling the police. They are here. They've come for
...and then came the sound of the special police knock.
Rat tat tat.
© Amanda Donovan Oct 2009
Amanda is studying
for her Masters at the University of Portsmouth
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