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Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Fable of the Corpuscles

Fable of the Corpuscles

This story (or fable) is well known by most.
I’ve heard it repeated from coast to coast.
It involves two corpuscles, red to be sure.
Whose daily rewards had little allure.

Their home, by the way, was in the blood of a horse.
And their movement was dictated by a pulsing course.
Life didn’t seem lonely, if the thought may be interjected
‘Cause they met quite often where the vessels intersected.

Passing opposite their friend in a separate vein.
They would greet each other by the other’s first name.
“Hi, Joe.” “Hi, Moe” “Hi, Joe.” “Hi, Moe” “Hi….”
Alas, there was never much time for a proper goodbye.

But the monotony of their circuit soon became clear
It was no fun repeating it year after year.
Deciding to change streams and trading their niches.
They succeeded quite handily in making the switches.

Much happier, now, that their lives were reversed,
They went their opposite ways, the other now first.
“Hi, Moe.” “Hi, Joe.” “Hi, Moe.” “Hi, Joe.”
That’s precisely how their new schedule would go.

The new route worked goodly for quite a long while
You would see them passing and flashing a smile.
“Hi, Moe.” “Hi, Joe.” “Hi, Moe.” “Hi, Joe.”
They were immensely pleased by the opposite flow.

But then it happened quickly, without any sign.
Their health took a dive, and they were dead by nine.
You may wonder what happened to cause their demise.
I’ll tell you frankly, I don’t profess to be wise.

Well, I expect you’re waiting patiently for the end of this poem
Believe me, my dear friends, I too want to go home.
The moral of this fable is readily clear, of course
Never, NEVER, change streams in the middle of a horse.


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Copyright © 2016 Lawrence Entertainment Group

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

"The Stairway to Never" by A. E. Lawrence



The Stairway to Never

By

A. E. Lawrence

 Josef Barrington becomes a wealthy man because he takes heed of the voice in the night.  When he obeys the command to build a special stairway in his mansion, he thinks the stairway is another step toward his destiny.  However, it soon becomes apparent that the stairs have become the device of his destruction. 
On a trip to Cleveland, Ohio, Peter White is flying his airplane over East Ridgeville when he spots an old, ill-kept mansion.  When he makes inquiries about the property, he learns that it’s known as the Barrington Haunted Castle.  Thinking he might purchase the property, he takes his girlfriend, Claire Whitley, to East Ridgeville to see the realtor.  There, they hear that Josef Barrington had killed his wife and three children almost a hundred years ago and was duly hanged.   
Peter and Claire go out to inspect the mansion and discover a strange stairway in the living room.  Although they think of the stairs as just a whim of a crazy old man, they are forced to change their minds one stormy night when the stairway becomes a gateway to the bizarre. 
They soon realize that Josef Barrington did not kill his family.  The stairway and what lay beyond were instrumental in their disappearance.  And Peter and Claire are about to meet the same fate. 

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           "Field Mouse: The Fooder"












An excerpt from 
"The Stairway to Never"

by

A. E. Lawrence

           He was in the middle of his calculations when he heard Claire call for him.  Grudgingly, he got up and went into the living room.  He couldn’t imagine why she would interrupt him at such a critical stage.
She was standing in front of the couch, staring up the truncated stairway.  He walked over to see what she was looking at.
When he walked up to her, she said, “What do you make of that?”  she pointed at the ceiling over the stairway.
He looked to where she was pointing and saw that the area of the ceiling directly over the stairs was shimmering.  Just then, lightning flashed through the windows, and a deafening clap of thunder shook the mansion. 
Claire grabbed his arm.  “What’s happening?  What is that?”
At first, he wasn’t sure what to tell her.  Finally, he said, “It’s storming outside and lightning is probably striking the house.  It looked something like Elmo’s Fire.”
“What?”
“Elmo’s Fire.  It’s the static electricity that builds up on airplane wings during electrical storms and is bled off through wires trailing off the back edges of the wings.  It’s blue like that.  It’s harmless as long as it’s bled away.”
“But how could it happen on a ceiling in a house?  Doesn’t that happen on metal wings?  The ceiling is wood and plaster.”
He shrugged.  “I didn’t say it was Elmo’s Fire.  It could be something else like it.”  He shrugged again.  “How should I know?”
“Well, I don’t like it.”
He stepped up a step to get a closer look.  The shimmering didn’t look particularly dangerous.   It didn’t look like the ceiling was on fire.  The shimmering was uniform and looked like it conformed exactly to the dimensions of the stairs.  It just looked like the ceiling had turned into an area of sparkling, blue water.  He went back down and got a flashlight.
Claire stood watching him, with her arms folded across her chest.  “What are you going to do?”
“I don’t know.  Just look at it and try to figure out what it is.  It’s probably going to go away any second.  Why don’t you get a picture of it?”
She walked into the dining room and got her camera bag.  When she got back to the stairs, Peter was sitting near the top, studying the ceiling with the beam of light.  She decided to use the Polaroid, first, because it was easier to use in the dim light.  She stepped up on the first step and took a picture without the flash.  Then she took one with the flash. 
While she was taking pictures, peter began probing the ceiling with the end of the flashlight.  He expected to feel resistance but, to his surprise, he found that the handle of the light went easily up into the shimmering light.  Then he expected to find that the flashlight had been damaged in some way when he pulled it out.  But, again, he was surprised when the handle came down unscathed.  He sat for a moment, trying to figure out what to do next.

§

Claire had stopped taking pictures and stood watching him as he experimented with the wavering ceiling.  She was both curious and afraid.  The house had a history of violence, and the stairway had been built by a madman.  Was this a manifestation of a divine power?  God?  Or the devil?  Without realizing it, she took three steps up so she could get a clearer view of what Peter was doing.  She had her flashlight and was shining it on the spot where he was inserting the handle of the flashlight, again.  The beam didn’t reflect back but seemed to be absorbed up into the ceiling.
Peter moved the flashlight up and down several times, and the result was the same each time.  He couldn’t detect any damage to the handle.  Nor was it any warmer or cooler for the exposure. 
He looked down at Claire.  “What do you think?”
She moved up another step.  “I don’t know.  Do you suppose the ceiling is radioactive or something?  Maybe radiation is doing something to the plaster and wood.”
“Well, if it’s atomic radiation, we’re in a lot of trouble.  But I don’t think that’s it.  I’m going to try something else.”  He went to the kitchen and took a package of sliced ham out of the ice box.  Then he went back up the stairs and probed the ceiling with the meat.  There was no indication that the meat had been damaged in any way. 
He took the ham back to the ice box and got a bottle of water.  After taking a sip, he took it back to the stairs.  When he got in place, he sloshed some of the water upward.  The water went into the ceiling and fell back down as if he had just tossed it into the air. 
Claire dodged as the water splashed at her feet.  Gaining her balance, she said, “It just went up and down like nothing was there.”
He was quiet for a moment then turned to her.  “Go upstairs and see if the handle of the flashlight pokes through the floor.”
She hurried down the steps and headed toward the main stairway.  He waited a moment then lifted the flashlight into the ceiling again.” 
He yelled, “Is it showing?”
She yelled back, “No!  I don’t see anything coming through!”
When she answered, he had turned in that direction and inadvertently put his hand up into the ceiling.  When he looked back and saw part of his hand missing, he jerked it back.  There had been no sensation, but his heart was suddenly thumping in his chest and he was breathing like he had just run a mile.  Fearing the worst, he inspected his fingers with the flashlight.  He flexed them.  There didn’t seem to be any damage to the skin.  He was still opening and closing his hand when Claire returned.
She shined her light on his hand.  “What are you doing?”
He was beginning to calm down.  His hand felt all right.  “I wasn’t paying attention, and I put my hand in there.”
“Peter!  Are you all right?”
He shrugged.  “I don’t know.  I guess so.  I didn’t feel a thing.”
Lightning flashed through the windows and thunder shook the mansion.  They could hear sheets of rain rasping against the windows and front door.  Although it was only four o’clock, the windows were black pits when the lightning wasn’t turning them into flashing beacons.
“Well, come down from there.  I’ve had enough excitement for one day.”
He looked up at the ceiling.  “Wait a minute.”  He reached up and put his hand back into the ceiling.  It disappeared down to his wrist.  He pulled it back out.  His heart was beating almost normally and his breathing had returned to normal.  He studied his hand, again, and still didn’t see or feel anything wrong. 
“What are you doing?”  Claire had seen his hand disappear into the shimmering ceiling.  Then come back out.  He didn’t show any signs of pain.  She didn’t know what to make of it.  “Be careful.”
After a moment’s hesitation, he reached up into the ceiling and moved his hand around to find out if he could feel anything.  All he could feel was air.  There was no change in temperature.
Claire had put her hands to her mouth and had quit breathing.  The sight of Peter’s arm, cut off near his elbow, was the weirdest thing she had ever witnessed.  She kept looking at his face, waiting for signs that he was in pain.  But his face remained expressionless, except for his look of determined concentration. 
Peter brought his arm back down and stared at the ceiling.  The whole thing is ridiculous.  Except it’s happening.  What would make a ceiling open up like that?  And what could possibly be up there?  There has to be something…doesn’t there?
When Claire realized what he was going to do, she yelled, “No!”
But he had gotten up and put his head into the ceiling.
She started up the stairs.  The sight of him cut off at his shoulders brought a scream to her throat.  But before she could push it through, he came back down.  She stopped mid-scream and stared at him.  He was still in one piece.  And, to her irritation, was grinning at her.
He held his hand out.  “Come on up.  You’ve got to see this.”
“What on earth…?”  She hesitated, then started up.
He laughed as he took her hand.  “Not ‘what on earth?’  What on un-earth?  It’s the most bizarre thing I’ve ever seen.”
She held back.  “Are you sure it’s safe?”
He cocked his head.  “I’m still in one piece, aren’t I?  Come on.”
She relented and stepped up next to him, stooping as she got close to the ceiling.  Then, holding hands, they rose as one.



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Copyright © 2016 Lawrence Entertainment Group

"The Angry Spirit of Never Moore" by A. E. Lawrence




The Angry Spirit of Never Moore

    By
A. E. Lawrence



Phillip Everette Moore is a wealthy man who loses his wife and two daughters in a tragic accident in 1846.  He becomes a recluse and loses his will to live.  However, he leaves his entire estate, including his mansion, Ever Moore, to a compassionate psychiatrist who operates a small insane asylum.  Dr. Dinston turns Ever Moore into a state-of-the-art asylum that treats its inmates humanely. 
As time passes, new administrators operate Ever Moore according to Dr. Dinston’s tenets.  However, when Dr. Willison takes the reins, the quality of care deteriorates drastically when he begins misappropriating the operating funds.  And the new staff he hires are nothing more than sadistic thugs who enjoy beating the inmates.  Eventually, the asylum becomes known as Never Moore by the despairing inmates.  And when the collective anguish of the inmates radiates out through the walls into the night, the spirit of Phillip Moore rises from his grave to exact retribution on those who would desecrate his beloved Ever Moore.
Marly Manchester is a fifteen-year-old girl who has been brought to Ever Moore by her uncle, Dr. Willison, after her family is killed in an accident.  The doctor wants to dispose of the girl and gain control of her sizable inheritance.  His plans are working until Marly commits a murder so bizarre that Inspector Markus Mackenzie can’t bring himself to bring charges against her.  And to complicate his investigation, several more inexplicable killings take place in at the asylum in a matter of days.
Markus and his wife, Stella, become enmeshed in a struggle to solve the mysterious murders while trying to find a way to absolve Marly of murder.  But they have no way of knowing that they are dealing with the angry spirit of Never Moore.

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          "The Angry Spirit of Never Moore."










An excerpt from 
"The Angry Spirit of Never Moore."

by

A. E. Lawrence

It was early afternoon and Rudy was napping when the commotion of a new arrival woke him up.  The bed to his left had been empty for almost a month, but when he sat up to see what was going on, he saw a girl sitting on the other side of the bed, facing away from him.  Some of the other people were standing near her bed, trying to talk to her, but she sat with her hands folded on her lap and refused to say anything.  Finally, the others wandered away to their own beds.
He still sat there and watched her.  She seemed to be about fourteen years old and was very pretty.  She kind of reminded him of his younger sister, Mary, except Mary’s hair was brown.  He wanted very much to go over and try to be her friend, but he knew that if she complained about him bothering her, the nurses and orderlies would take him back to the basement for more treatment.  And nothing was worth going through that, again.
He had lost track of the time of day because he had fallen asleep, but when the large door at the end of the dorm opened, he knew that it was lunch time.  He got up and stood at near the bottom of his bed like you were required to do at meal times.  The nurses and orderlies would push the food cart along the aisle way and serve the meals as they went along.  Then they would leave for a half hour for the inmates to eat.  Then they would bring a cart back to pick up the tin plates and cups and utensils.  If someone didn’t finish his meal by the time they came back, the orderlies would take it from him.  So everyone hurried to finish.
As the nurses and orderlies came down the aisle, Rudy was surprised to see that the girl wasn’t standing at the foot of her bed.  She was still lying on her back, staring at the ceiling.  He thought about calling to her to let her know what she had to do, but no one was allowed to talk while the staff was in the dorm.  So he had no choice but to forget about her and get his own food.
When the food cart reached the girl’s bed, the nurse in charge just glanced at her and motioned for the others to move on.  If the inmate couldn’t follow the rules, she didn’t get to eat. 
After Rudy got his food, he sat on his bed to eat.  But he couldn’t enjoy his food while the girl was doing without.  Finally, he decided to keep a piece of his bread for her.  It was a daring thing to do because it was against the rules to keep any food in the dorm.  If they held a surprise inspection as they often did after a meal, he would get punished, usually a half-dozen whacks with a wooden rod.  And he still had welts from the last beating.
He waited until they had come back and collected the plates and cups.  Then he waited a while more to make sure the staff wasn’t coming back before he took the bread from under his mattress and went over to the girl’s bed.   He stood there for a moment, trying to think of what he should say to her. 
Finally, he bent low and whispered, “You have to get up and stand by the foot of your bed.  If you don’t, they won’t give you any food.”
The girl didn’t respond.
He spoke a little louder, “I saved you some bread.  Do you want it?”
Still no response.
He was getting nervous because he was standing there with bread in his hand and the was a chance that some of the staff might come back in and catch him with it.  He didn’t know what to do.
He didn’t understand why she wouldn’t talk to him.
He leaned closer.  “I’m going to stick the bread under your pillow, okay?”
She didn’t make any indication that she had heard him.
He quickly pushed the piece of bread under the edge of her pillow then hurried back to his own bed.  He laid down, but instead of looking up at the ceiling as he usually did, he rolled onto his side so he could keep an eye on his new neighbor.

Chapter 2

Rudy had dozed off, again, as he usually did after a meal, and it took him a moment to come fully awake.  When he did, he remembered that the girl was next to him.  He looked over and saw that she was still on her back, with her hands clasped on her stomach, staring at the ceiling.  But he also noticed that the piece of bread was gone from under her pillow.  He smiled.
Encouraged that she had eaten his bread, he got up and stepped over to her bed.  Bending down, he said, “You don’t have to be afraid of anything.  If anyone bothers you, I’ll tear their heads off.  You can be sure of that.  What’s your name?”
She didn’t give the slightest indication that she had heard him.
Frustrated, he said, “My name is Rudy.  I’ve been here for a long time.  Why don’t you talk?”
That’s when he realized that she might be afraid of him.
He let out a big breath.  “Okay.  I don’t know why you won’t talk to me, but you don’t have to if you don’t want to.  I’ll be in my bed if you ever want to be my friend.  Good bye.”
Just as he turned to go back to his own bed, the large door opened and Nurse Dillard and an orderly came in.  He thought they were going to do a search, but they went straight to the girl’s bed and stood for a moment looking down at her.  Then the nurse used her wooden rod to poke at the girl’s foot.
The girl opened her eyes but otherwise didn’t respond to the prodding.
The nurse yelled, “Stand up!”
The girl still didn’t move.  She kept her eyes on the ceiling.
The nurse whipped the rod down across the girl’s thighs.
The girl jumped from the blow.  Then, slowly, she sat up on the edge of her bed.
“I said stand up!” 
The girl looked at the nurse for the first time.  Then she slowly got to her feet and faced the woman.  But she didn’t speak.
Bringing the rod up threateningly, the nurse said, “You think you’re high and mighty.  When we bring in the meals, you are to stand at the foot of your bed to receive your food.  Do you understand me?”
The girl just stared at her.
Whack!  The nurse brought the rod across the girl’s upper arm.  “I said, do you understand me?”
The girl didn’t cry out or jump from the blow, but she got an odd look on her face. 
The nurse brought the rod up, again, to strike another blow.  “You will not defy me, you little bitch!”  She swung the rod.
As the rod came toward her, the girl grabbed it with her left hand.  Then in a swirl of motion, she used both hands to yank it out of the nurse’s hand.  And in one deft move, she pivoted and jammed the end of the rod into the nurse’s stomach.
Everyone in the dorm had been watching the encounter between the nurse and the girl.  When the girl grabbed the rod and poked the nurse, a few of them laughed and a couple applauded.  Then the room grew quiet as the full implication of the conflict became apparent.
The girl had rammed the stick into the nurse’s belly so hard that it went into her and the tip came out her back.
The nurse stood there for a few seconds with a shocked look on her face.  She looked down at the rod sticking in her.  Then she looked at the girl, confusion distorting her face.  Finally, her eyes rolled up and she twisted to one side and crumbled to the floor with a thump.
Rudy was sitting on his bed, watching what was taking place.  He didn’t laugh or applaud because he saw the rod go into the nurse’s stomach, and he knew the girl had just killed the woman.  The whole thing was like a nightmare in slow motion.  He didn’t understand how the girl could push that rod so hard that it would spear the nurse like that. 
When the nurse fell to the floor, she had twisted around and fell on her face.  As she hit the floor, the rod was jammed into her, further.  And blood was beginning to pool around her body.
Rudy knew what was going to happen and couldn’t stand the thought of her being punished.  His first impulse was to go to the girl and try to protect and console her.  But he was caught up short when he saw the look on her face.
She didn’t look scared.  In fact, she laid back down on her bed, clasped her hand on her chest and gazed up at the ceiling as if nothing had happened.  As far as he could tell, killing a nurse didn’t bother her at all. 
The orderly stood transfixed as the girl wrested the rod out of the nurse’s hand and rammed it into her.  He stared at the pooling blood, nervously tapping a wooden club on his palm.  Then he looked at the girl.  Then he looked around at the other patients.  Finally, he turned around and ran out the door and slammed it shut.


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                    "Field Mouse: The Fooder"









Copyright © 2016 Lawrence Entertainment Group



Monday, December 12, 2016

"Field Mouse: The Fooder" by A. E. Lawrence

                                                                           Field Mouse: The Fooder


by

A. E. Lawrence

Charles Willoughby’s youth was an ordeal of beatings by his God-fearing father and seductions by his grossly obese mother.  A warped and cruel man, he marries a woman who is willing to submit to his jaded sexual demands.  However, when she bears a child not of his loin, he holds her and the child captive on his isolated farm and severs all ties with the nearby town.  Then when his wife is killed, he is left with the girl.  Although his religious beliefs preclude him from killing her, he doesn’t feel obligated to treat her humanely.   
The girl, Taffeta Moonrose, is treated like a dog under Charles’ care.  But one day, she finds herself free when Charles has a heart attack.  Now, weak with hunger and on her own, she ventures forth into an unknown, hostile world in a desperate search for food.  After stealing from the towns people all summer, she becomes known as the wild girl of Ashville.  
When Matt and Toby Claybourne arrive at a nearby cabin on vacation, they learn of the “wild girl” and become determined to find and adopt her.  When they finally do find her, their relationship with her becomes one that will change each of their lives in ways unforeseen.       
This is a story that will grab your attention right from the prologue and won’t let you go until you’ve finished the very last page.  It will take you on a rocket ride of emotions that will allow you to hate, entice you to love, tease you with hope, and leave you crying with a smile on your lips.
What Charles Willoughby does to his wife and her bastard child begins you on a journey filled with fear and humor, suffering and joy, sorrow and redemption.   

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                "Field Mouse: The Fooder"












An excerpt from "Field Mouse: The Fooder."
                                           
                                By

                   A. E. Lawrence

The clatter of silverware and the sound of footsteps scared the girl.  She jumped down and squatted in the darkness, gauging the distance to the dark wall of trees.  She heard the screen door bang open and sprinted to the rear of the cabin, not yet willing to brave the shadowy woods.   
Seconds later, the man stepped into view, looking around cautiously.  He stood for a long time at the front of the cabin before he spoke.   
"I don't see anything.  If it was a dog or wolf, it's the strangest sounding one I ever heard." 
The woman's dark figure joined his and latched onto his arm.  "Whatever it was sounded awful pathetic.  Wait!  I see something back there."  She pointed to the back corner of the building. 
The girl wanted to pull her head back, to run; yet, the sound of the woman's voice pulled on her like a living magnet.  She stepped boldly into the open. 
"It's her!"  The man's coarse whisper rode the distance.  He took a step forward.  But when the girl moved away, as if to bolt, he retreated and pulled the woman down with him to a crouch.  "No, wait!  We won't hurt you," he called. 
The woman spoke, "I'll bet she's hungry.  Maybe she smelled our food." 
Soft laughter; "I'll just bet.  I don't think she stopped by to ask how our vacation's going.  More likely, she came back to see if we're dumb enough to leave our stuff out again.  Good thing I locked up." 
She nudged him.  "Will you be quiet.  The poor thing has to be desperate to be out this late.  Look, she's scared to death." 
A snort.  "Maybe.  But I'm not exactly eager to buddy up to someone who sounds like that.  If you're serious about this, we'll need a muzzle." 
"Matt!" 
A heavy sigh.  "Okay."  He directed himself to the shadowy figure, "Little girl.  We'll give you some food if you'll tell us where you live."  When she didn't respond, he spoke to the woman in a low voice, "Want me to get her?" 
She ignored him.  "Do you want some food, dear?  Are you hungry?  Of course you are, what a silly question."  Letting go of his arm, she got up and headed for the front door. 
The girl had been listening intently; they were talking about her.  She couldn't understand everything he said and didn't like what she could understand, and she was positive he was saying things not meant for her ears (probably mean things), but it didn't matter anyway; she knew he wasn't to be trusted.  She wished she could see his eyes. 
She almost ran when to woman got up, remaining still only because she mentioned food. 
It could be a trick, though. 
He was off balance; she could beat him to the trees.  Standing ready, facing him across the yard, she waited. 

                                       §

The woman came back and knelt beside the man again, a plate in one hand.  "Do you want this, Dear?"  She held it out. 
Remaining still, muscles low on her ribcage quivering, the girl's mind was churning.  The offer of the delicious-smelling food was near overpowering, yet one of the women in town had nearly grabbed her this way, and there was a man here. 
Leaning to the woman's ear, he said something.  She waddled forward and set the plate on the ground where the light shown from the kitchen window.  Then they backed all the way to the far side of the driveway and waited.   
Temptation was too great; her hunger had to be addressed right then.  Tensing for treachery, the girl sidled forward and cautiously squatted just outside the line of illumination.  She kept her eyes on them as she pulled the dish close.  Still watching them, she tossed the fork aside and grabbed the chunk of meat.  She thought she heard the woman make a protesting sound, but now she was too busy to care.  After wolfing the meat, she fingered a gob of potatoes, then some vegetable and then the bread.  The flavor was so maddeningly delicious it made her light-headed.  She emptied the plate as fast as she could chew and swallow, then licked the plate clean.  Finally, she wiped her hands on her pants and waited.   
The man and woman hadn't moved, nor had either talked while she ate.  All three remained staring at each other for several minutes.   
Then the girl remembered the second dish of food.  Not sure how to deal with this man, she anticipated him...as she had learned to do with Charles.   
She smacked the ground with her fist:  "Owwooo, owwoooo." (Begging was the right way to get another spoonful of the delicious dog food.) 
The woman jumped and hid part way behind the man. 
The girl was amused.  She repeated the performance, smacking the grass several times as she howled. 
The man said something to the woman; she went back into the cabin and returned quickly with the second plate.  He said something else and pointed.  She duck-walked forward again and set the plate on the ground; this time, on their side of the rectangle of light from the kitchen. 
The girl had moved back at the woman's approach but returned once she had retreated to the man's side.  More sure of the situation now, she stepped into the light and squatted before the dish. 
Not quite able to stifle a scream, the woman managed to cut it short; "Matt!  Her face!" 
"What the hell...?" 
Startled by the woman's outburst and momentarily blinded by the light, the girl grabbed the dish and ran back to the rear of the building.  There weren't any rushing footsteps behind her, no grasping hands, so she stopped and looked back.  They hadn't moved. 
She started to eat the second piece of meat, but her stomach 
"...us your name." 
was beginning to hurt.  She wondered if she could get the dish back to the farm without spilling it, or if she should eat everything now.  One time,   
"...want to help you." 
she got sick when she found a chocolate cake and ate the whole thing right on the spot.  She had to puke it out, and that made her cry.  Finally,   
"...you talk?" 
she made her decision and began stuffing everything into her jacket pockets.  It was a slippery business, and sticky; she had to scrape the potatoes onto the bread before she could wedge it next to the meat and green beans.  But she got it all safely stored.  After licking the dish and her fingers, she tossed the dish aside and took a couple steps further into the open.   
"Let us help you.  The police are really mad at you."  He was still talking.   
But she didn't want to talk; she was trying to think:  Can I trust her?  Wait to see what she's going to do?  Of course, he's doing the talking.  Oh, shut up, will you?  I'mgonnabeatchubitch.  Of course I can talk; I'm no baby.   
Her hunger was satisfied; she didn't need anyone to give her food, now.  She wanted 
"...your name...." 
Shut up! 
to curl up and go to sleep.  Even though the woman fascinated her, the man was like Charles.  She felt uneasy with him now that she was so full.  And not being able to see his eyes, she had no way of knowing his intentions. Is this really a trick?  Will he try to get me now that I eated so much?  If he gets me, will he make me take a bath, or make me lay down so the rats can eat on me, too?  She was willing to put some trust in the woman, but she feared him; he would be the one to make the decisions.   
Afraid of the dark but more afraid to be captured, she headed toward the path.  It was a risk going across the yard with him so close...yet, the woods were unfamiliar here.  And though the night was scary, she could use it to her advantage if she had to.  She kept her eyes on him all of the way to the edge of the clearing then she ducked behind a shadowy bush and worked her way to the big tree.  She expected him to make a dash for her. 
But he didn't budge.   
He was still talking, telling her not to go, asking how she hurt her face (which didn't make any sense), still wanting to know where she lived.  But Charles had warned her against talking to anyone, or even listening to what they said. 
Yet, she was confused by the man's gentle tone, and strangely miffed that he wouldn't chase her.  It was certainly odd.  Charles would have.  She waited for them to go back into the cabin so she could walk out to the road and back to the farm where she would be safe.


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         "Field Mouse: The Fooder"


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