DON’T TELL YOUR FATHER – a short story by Leanne Halyburton.
3826 words. Please note: contains strong language.
Ten-year-old Jamie, and his deep, inscrutable little sister Alice, have finally found a sense of peace and security under the roof of their beloved Aunt Lil. However, their father, a man driven by his own inner demons, seems determined to nip any happiness that comes his family’s way sharply in the bud… and when his sister Lil steps in to prevent him from dishing out yet another beating to his weary, resigned son, Frank immediately declares that they are hitting the road again. Devastated, and wishing that she’d kept her mouth shut, Lil comes up with a way of keeping in touch with her brother’s family… whilst praying that he doesn’t find out. Jamie, sworn to secrecy, knows the price he will pay if he discovers just what Lil has put into the paper bag of ‘snacks’ she insists on giving the boy for their journey. But Alice has Jamie’s back – and she proves to be more than a match for the man who’s rage and bitterness has led him to terrorise his own family. Read more