The Evil That Lies Within

Submitted into Contest #158 in response to: Write about a character with questionable morals.... view prompt

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Drama Crime Sad

This story contains themes or mentions of physical violence, gore, or abuse.

It was a beautiful afternoon for playing games. The sun was out, and not a cloud in the sky. It was a perfect day for play and several children from town were taking advantage of it. Through the laughter of the children, one voice rang out. “You’re it, Thomas!”

Tag was far from one of Thomas’ favorite games, and he frowned

at his plight, for he was smaller than the other children, and rarely was able

to run anyone down to tag them. Still, he had no choice but to try. Again, and

again, he would chase after them, trying to tag them, but as much as he tried, his

efforts were in vain. Exhausted, Thomas fell to his knees.

Like sharks drawn to the smell of blood, the other children encircled him like a pack of wild dogs surrounding their prey. “Come on, Thomas, pick me!” each one would chant. Thomas lunged out and flailed his arms but was unable to touch anyone. They were too quick, and they knew it.

A whiney voice shouted out. “Aw, the poor baby can’t touch us.

Don’t cry, little baby!”

As the children broke out in laughter, Thomas felt his face

flush, and he knew it was visible for everyone to see.

“Look, everyone,” another boy shouted, “the baby’s shitting his

pants! I hope he doesn’t try to roll around in it when it comes out!”

A second voice joined in, “Maybe we should help him get over the

fear of doing just that!”

“You’re right. We should.” chirped out a third voice.

The circle closed in on Thomas, and two of the oldest boys

grabbed him by the shoulders and dragged him to a nearby pasture. After a

moment of searching, they found their prize, and showed Thomas what they found.

There, on the ground was a fresh cow pie accompanied by a swarm of flies.

The oldest boy holding Thomas whispered in his ear, “Welcome home.”

The boys threw Thomas down on the pile and pushed his face in the muck. Next, they vigorously rolled him through the pile, ensuring he was thoroughly smeared from head to foot. When their work was completed, the oldest of the boys shouted, “There you go, little baby. You should feel comfortable now, living in the shit you’re made of.”

Broken in spirit, Thomas laid silently in the muck, wishing he

was dead. The taunting continued until the children disbursed, leaving Thomas

to fend for himself. Why me, he thought. Why am I so small compared to other boys my

age? Why am I the only one they pick on? It’s not fair! Rolling on

his side, Thomas glared at the boys as they disappeared in the distance.

As their laughter faded away, Thomas became filled with rage. It

was at that moment, the seed of an emotion was planted in his mind, and it

sprouted into hate. Pulling himself out of the mud and slime, he proceeded to

go home. Blinded by anger, Thomas ignored the stares that greeted him on his

way home. He knew he smelled terrible and looked like a mess, but none of that

mattered. He had to get home and get cleaned up before his father saw what

happened to him.

As the thoughts of his father sifted in his mind, a chill ran down Thomas’s spine and his fit of rage was replaced by fear. The humiliation he felt walking home would be nothing compared to the punishment his father would bestow on him—and worse, the punishment he would give his mother for having given birth to him.

Fortune was with him that day, for he beat his father home.

Quickly, he changed out of his clothes and washed the slime from his body. When

he was done, Thomas went to find his mother. When he reached the kitchen, he

found her there, preparing the evening meal. Giving her a hug, he said, “Hi,

Mom. I missed you today.”

Ruth smiled at him and returned his hug. “Hi, my Thomas. I’m so

glad you’re home. Where’s your brother?” she asked.

Thomas released his hug and shrugged his shoulders. “I don’t

know,” he said. “Don’t worry about him. He can take care of him­self.” He knew

it was true. Adam was two years his elder. He was tall for his age and strong.

Adam also had a lot of friends and was praised for being a good boy by the

neighbors. He was everything Thomas wasn’t.

Ruth released her hug too. “It’s almost time to eat. Be a good

boy, Thomas, and find your brother.”

Thomas relented and went back outdoors again. He went to the

part of town where Adam frequented. As he wandered down the road, he found Adam

on the street talking to some other boys. When Thomas saw whom, he was talking

with, he froze in his tracks. He saw Adam talking to one of the boys who rolled

him in the muck. Thomas hid behind the corner of a nearby building and waited.

It wasn’t long before he heard both laughing aloud about something. There was only one thing he could think of that would make them laugh like that. The rage he felt earlier returned and started to eat away at him. Desire for vengeance

filled him as he waited for an opportunity to arise.

God must

have heard my prayers, he thought, for soon after, the boy walked off

alone. Thomas stealthily followed him and waited for his chance. He picked up a

rock about the size of his fist and con­tinued to follow him. Then the fated

moment arrived. As the boy started up a vacant street, he made his move. Thomas

caught up with him on silent feet, then called out to him. The boy stopped and

turned around, and when he did, Thomas swung the rock with all of his might and

struck him in the head. When the rock hit him, he heard a cracking sound, and

the side of his head caved in. The boy fell to the ground in convulsions.

Thomas curiously watched as the boy slowly died in front of him.

His rage was sated, but still he felt dissatisfied. He only

wished the boy had suffered more.

Thomas then turned and walked back the way he came. When he returned to where Adam was, he called out to him. “Adam! Mom’s looking for you. Come on, let’s go.” Adam took off with Thomas, and as they ran home, they were laughing all the way.

August 09, 2022 16:21

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