The Short Cut Home
Peter and his friends were discussing the rumours about a street which is a shortcut from school to his house. They were talking about how the street is deserted, with only one house in the middle.
When they were walking home from school the pace of Peter’s steps increased as they went past it. Peter felt a shiver going down his spine. The street was pitch black as there were no streetlights. There were wooden planks boarding up the windows.
The next day, Peter was going home from school. It was dark and he was walking alone as he had got an hour’s detention after school for swearing at a teacher. He thought to himself that he should take the shortcut home as he was late. Suddenly he stopped. He thought about the things his friends had been talking about. “A murder happened here 2 days ago” Laura said. He was thinking should he go or not. “All that stuff is nonsense” he thought and stepped into the dark, pitched black street.
At first it felt normal, but as he kept on going he saw a strange light flicker in the old, abandoned house. He jumped and stopped. Should he go back or keep walking? Peter deep in his thoughts went nearer to the house. He didn’t know what he was thinking. As he reached nearer and nearer to the house, he felt his neck tingle. The window was high so Peter got a small box and placed in under the sill.
He looked and peeped through a small hole in the plank. He could see out of the corner of his eye a man. A thin man, tall with a long overcoat on. He had a shiny kitchen knife. Peter suddenly saw a woman on the floor with tape masked over her mouth. Her hands and feet were tied.
Peter fell off the box. The man heard the sound and ran to the front door. Peter swiftly went to the back of the house and hid behind a bush. The man shouted “Who’s there?!” Peter, not knowing what he should do stayed deadly still. He felt the footsteps getting closer and closer. Thoughts were running through his mind. “Why did I come here? What should I do?” Run or stay? If he ran he might get caught but he might still get caught just staying there. The man kept getting closer and closer. Peter could hear his heart beating.
Then the footsteps suddenly stopped.
Peter was sure he was still there but at the same time he was sure that he had gone.
He peeped over bush. The man was walking back, checking the grounds as he was going. Peter desperate to get out of there ran as fast as he could.
The man stealthily shifted round and saw a glimpse of Peter’s face. He ran after Peter. Peter was running as fast as he could, trying to catch his breath. The man reached out and he was about two-three centimetres away from him. He grabbed Peter. He was scared to death and he burst into tears.
The man took Peter quickly into his house.
As Peter entered he could see his own breath. It was cold. Peter felt like he was entering a freezer. He saw the woman lying on the floor. Her mouth masked and her hands and feet tied together. There were knives on the floor next to the woman. Peter jumped and screamed. The man put his hand over Peter’s mouth and commanded him to “Shut up or you’ll get the same thing as the woman.”
Peter slowly calmed down and got his breath back. Thoughts were running through his mind. Should he go for the door? What did he mean by saying “the same thing as the woman?” Was he going to let him go? Maybe it was just a plan to shut him up.
“Look, this is the important thing. You’ve got to promise me something” explained the man. Peter nodded his head. “If I let you go, you’ve got to promise not to tell a soul about what you saw in this house. Even if you mention one tiny bit then I’m coming after you.”
Peter nodded in fear.
“I’ll be onto you faster than a dog on a cat. Don’t underestimate me lad. If you cross me then you’ve had it. Understood?” shouted the man.
Peter let out a low grunt.
The man led Peter to the door and let him go. He ran as fast as he could until the dark, pitched black street disappeared and he reached the gentle, warm glow of the streetlights.
When Peter got home he went upstairs and quickly got into his bed.
Peter woke up the next day feeling much better. He went to school with a big bright smile on his face looking like nothing happened to him. As he reached school he decided that he should tell his mates what happened as he thought the man doesn’t even know where he lives so how can he do anything to him? His mates didn’t believe him at first but eventually they did. Peter wasn’t scared of the man anymore.
That evening, when Peter reached home after school, his phone rang. He picked it up.
“Hello”, Peter said.
“You’re dead”, barked a hard voice.
Peter realised it was the man from the house.
“I know where you live and I’m coming to get you!”