The Neighbor

fishing gear

One morning, a man and his two sons went fishing in the woods that stretched for miles beyond their own backyard.

His wife watched from the kitchen window as they disappeared into the trees. Later that day, the wife began to become worried, for her family was not back and she hadn't heard word from them since they left. Dinner had been ready hours ago.

After another hour of waiting, she decided to go out and look for them. By now, it was almost completely dark. She ran through the woods calling out their names. She got no replies. It was some time before she came to a stream. There, lying in the banks of the stream were the bodies of her husband and oldest son, with a knife sticking in each of their chests. It was obvious that they had been murdered. But where was her younger son, a boy of only eleven?

After a long time of silent vigil, prayer, and mourning, she decided to head back home, for now she realized, the person who killed her two family members was still out there in the woods. Frightened out of her wits, she ran frantically through the woods until she reached her house. She went to her next door neighbor's house and told her what had happened, but swore her to secrecy because she didn't want anyone else finding out about this tragic event. To avoid the press, the next day, her neighbor helped her smuggle the bodies out of the stream and buried them both in the woods, right by the stream.

The woman was still in search of her younger son, however. She had searched the woods the entire morning and found no trace of him. Her hopes were that he had found shelter and would return home when he knew it was safe. She had been digging her husband and son's graves all day and was getting tired from the work. When she was finished digging, her neighbor offered to go back to the house and retrieve two blankets to wrap the bodies in. The new widow told her to get the one off of her bed. Her neighbor went inside.

Nearly three quarters of an hour passed by and the neighbor had still not returned. The woman decided to go back to see that she was okay. She went up the stairs and was horrified at the sight in her bedroom. She screamed, for there on her bed, near the open window, was the severed head of her youngest son, and a knife. Her neighbor was nowhere in sight. - By Allison Thomas