Stealing Away In The Night

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Johnny asked if he could go outside and have a smoke.  I nodded and buzzed him out the back door where he lit up a cigarette and I turned back to my conversation with Wally.  We were talking about the carpet cleaning business he owned and t...

Johnny asked if he could go outside and have a smoke.  I nodded and buzzed him out the back door where he lit up a cigarette and I turned back to my conversation with Wally.  We were talking about the carpet cleaning business he owned and time slipped away from us.  When I looked at the monitor showing me the smoking patio it was empty.

“Wally?  Did you buzz Johnny in when I wasn't paying attention?”

“No.  Maybe he stepped out of the camera angle?”

I shook my head.

“Shit!”

I called the local police.  Wally, the four officers and I each took a flashlight and headed out into the small wooded area behind the halfway house.  It was dark and nothing moved.  Everyone was silent, intently watching the darkness at the end of the beam of light from our flashlights.  

“Here Johnny.  Here Johnny, Johnny, Johnny.”  Wally cooed.

We're not searching for a lost dog I wanted to whisper.  The sound of a branch cracking stopped everybody in their tracks.  Then we heard it again.  It sounded like it was coming from above us.  Wally shone his flashlight into an oak tree in front of us.  There was a brief yelp as the light caught Johnny standing in the tree.  Johnny's cry was cut short as the limb he was standing on gave out and snapped sending Johnny to the forest floor with a loud thud.  The officers rushed him while he was down, handcuffed him and pulled him out of woods.  They stuffed Johnny into a squad car and took him back jail.  I stood watching the taillights thinking that in two months I'll be seeing Johnny again.

 

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