St. Louis, Missouri, 1982 – William Taylor opened the closet, expecting to see his leather jacket. Instead, there was a gap between his church coat and Laura’s raincoat. Even the hanger was gone.
Looking down, he spotted the hanger and bent to pick it up. As he grabbed it, he noticed that the shoe shelf was missing a pair of shoes. Specifically his hiking boots.
He frowned. Where on Earth?
He turned around and saw five-year old Henry engulfed in his jacket and boots. “So, you’re the thief!” he said, a humorous glint in his green eyes.
“Uh-oh!” Henry’s matching green eyes widened and he turned to run away. He didn’t get far when William grabbed him, swung him up into the air, and started to tickle him. The boots fell off Henry’s feet with a clunk.
“Daddy, stop!” Henry said between laughs. “Daaaaaddy!”
After a few more tickles, William set him down. “Can I have my jacket back now, buddy?” he asked.
“Yeah,” Henry said, trying to shrug out of it. “It’s too big for me.”
“Then why’d you put it on?” William asked with an amused smile as he helped his son.
Henry shrugged. William put on his jacket and boots, then took Henry’s coat and shoes out of the closet and handed them to him. “You want to come with me?”
“Yeah!” Henry said as he took the items. “Wait, where are you going?”
“Oh, just to the store to get a few things,” William said, tugging his baseball cap over his brown hair. He helped Henry put his shoes on, and when they’d finished, he called out, “Laura, I have Henry with me. We’ll be back in about half an hour.”
After she’d replied back, William moved to the door with Henry in tow.
“When I get bigger, will I fit in your jacket?”
“Maybe,” William said, opening the door. “Maybe I’ll even give it to you when you are. Would you like that?”
Henry nodded vigorously. William reached out and ruffled his brown hair, causing him to wrinkle his nose and protest.
©H.S. Kylian 2018
(Critiques are welcome and appreciated!)
This post was last updated December 3, 2018