Written for The Daily Slice
Timmy’s Secret Place
By Lisa McCourt Hollar
Timmy looked over his shoulder and then ducked down to enter the small hiding place where he kept all of his treasures. It was really just a bunch of sticks he’d put together in the woods behind his house and then covered with leaves, but it was his and no one knew about it.
Once inside, Timmy set his book bag on the ground and began sifting around inside. He had a new treasure he wanted to add to his collection. It was very precious and he’d covered it with other objects, just in case anyone went snooping before he had a chance to hide it. Moving the books and magazines out of the way, he pulled his treasure out, a porcelain doll with blond hair and blue eyes. Her lips were ruby red. He stared at those lips, feeling a little funny inside. They reminded him of Jenny Murphy’s lips. She’d kissed him once, at Adam’s birthday party. They’d played Spin the Bottle and the bottle had landed on her. He’d felt funny inside then, when they’d gone into the closet and she kissed him, only it was nothing like when his mother kissed him good night. She’d pushed her tongue in his mouth and her hands had groped at his pants. Then she’d laughed at him and told everyone he was just a little boy. He didn’t know what she meant, but he still felt ashamed.
That was mean of her.
Timmy looked at the doll. Did she just speak?
She should be taught a lesson.
“How?” Timmy asked.
Bring her here.
“But this is my secret place,” Timmy protested.
Maybe she was right then. You are ‘Tiny Timmy.”
Tiny Timmy is a ninny.
He’s got a teeny weeny, weeny..
“STOP!” Timmy covered his ears but he could still hear her voice in his head.
You make it stop, Timmy. Bring Jenny here.
“Are you going to hurt her?”
Yes. Because she hurt you Timmy and she deserves to feel your pain.
“Jenny, wait up.”
School was over and Timmy was running down the road, trying to catch her before she got to her house.
“What do you want, Timmy?” Jenny asked, waiting for him.
Timmy looked around. No one was around. He and Jenny were the only ones that walked this way after school, once they passed Rays Tavern.
“I wanted to show you something.”
“Really?” Jenny leered.
“In the woods, just behind my house.”
Jenny’s eyes widened. “Really?” She took hold of his arm. “A private game of Spin the Bottle?”
“Uh huh,” Timmy said. The doll had told him to say whatever he had to, as long as he brought Jenny to her.
“My mom’s boyfriend says I’m mature for my age,” Jenny said, following Timmy.
Timmy wrinkled his nose. Brent William’s, Laura Murphy’s boyfriend, was a creep.
“He says boys my age don’t know what they are doing.”
Timmy didn’t say anything. He didn’t know what to say. He didn’t know what he was doing. He was only ten years old.
Can I tell you something?” Jenny whispered? They were almost to the fort. Timmy’s stomach was beginning to hurt.
“Uh huh,” he said.
“Brent scares me. He hurts me too. He says it’s a good hurt, but it makes me want to cry.”
They were outside Timmy’s secret place now. Timmy hesitated outside the entrance. He didn’t know what to do. The doll wanted him to send Jenny inside; she wanted to punish her for making him feel bad. But now she looked sad. She wasn’t being mean to him and he had a feeling she was asking him for help.
“Can you tell him to stop?” Timmy asked.
“I tried. The first time. I was crying and I begged him to stop. He slapped me.”
Timmy felt anger surge inside his stomach. It rolled around a little, twisting and knotting. It felt a bit like a fist punching him in his gut. “Tell your mom? She can make him stop.”
“I tried. She didn’t believe me.”
Timmy didn’t know what to say. He could always tell his parents anything.
“Maybe if I tell my mom…”
“Timmy, no! It will just make it worse.”
She sounded scared.
“Jenny, I don’t think not saying anything will help…”
Jenny was looking past him towards the fort. “Is this what you wanted to show me?”
“Let me see, silly.” Jenny pushed him out of the way and stepped inside.
Go away, Timmy.
“No, I was wrong. I don’t want to hurt her.”
“Timmy, what’s going on?” Jenny was covering her ears. “My head hurts. Timmy?”
Go away, Timmy. Timmy felt something push him towards the door. He stumbled out into the woods and ran. He covered his ears so he couldn’t hear Jenny’s screams.
The police searched the woods until dark. Timmy was afraid they would find his fort, but it was concealed well. He’d wanted it to be a secret and he had done a good job. He could hear the doll, in his head. She told him what he should do once the police left Jenny’s house.
He was afraid, but she told him it would be alright. He walked up to Jenny’s door and knocked. He almost pissed himself when Brent opened the door.
“What do you want?”
“Um, er… it’s about Jenny.”
“I don’t know where she is. Doesn’t anyone in this town believe me?”
He was drunk. Timmy could smell the alcohol on his breath.
“I do. I know where she is.”
“Where?” He reached out to grab Timmy’s shirt, but Timmy stepped back. Brent staggered and almost fell before catching himself.”
“I’ll take you to her, but it has to be just you. She doesn’t want anyone else to come along.” Timmy turned to leave, waiting long enough for Brent to step out the door and follow him. “She’s in the woods, back behind my place…”
Word Count: 996