What’s so terrifying about the dangers of this world is how close they can get to us without us even realizing it.
When I was a small child, I lived on a cul-de-sac with a little park at its end. Between my outgoing and wonderful family and my adorableness, we were on good terms with all of our neighbors. It was a picturesque little place. It was safe.
One day, I went to the park, sat on a swing, and waited for a playmate to show up. I was disappointed when only two teenage boys arrived. One was very nervous and constantly glanced around while the ‘nice’ one talked to me. The nervous one didn’t like it when the charming one asked me for a date but didn’t interrupt until he heard me innocently reply, ‘I’ll have to ask my mom’.
Looking back, I think it was that response that transformed me from just a concept into an actual child in his eyes.
Nervous forced Charming to leave. I was too young to realize all the possible dangers I had just avoided, but I never felt comfortable alone in that park again.
Many of the characters in this collection will never get to ponder the ‘what ifs’. A new home, a doctor visit, a simple online order—we navigate through so many everyday occurrences with an unspoken promise that we’ll be safe.
We often forget that the world never promised us anything.
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See you in the shadows,