She ran down the street, heedless of the danger of slipping and falling on rain-slicked asphalt. Rod ran four steps ahead of her, close on the heels of the shadowy figure that clutched her son. Kevin stared over the figure's shoulder, fixing her with a sullen, accusatory stare.
With a final lunge, Rod caught Kevin's captor in a tight bear hug and forced him to stop. The shadowy figure gave up the boy and disappeared in to the night.
"Oh, Kevin," Jenny said, holding her arms out to her son.
Rod began to back away from her, tightly gripping Kevin. She stopped, confused.
"Rod," Jenny cried, "Stop! Where are you going?"
Her husband said nothing. He simply kept backing away.
Kevin opened his mouth, but all she could hear were garbled noises.
"Kevin," Jenny felt tears streaming down her cheeks, "Kevin, speak up. Mommy can't understand you."
Kevin again opened his mouth. This time the words came out in a steady, low growl. "I said," he narrowed his eyes, "That I'm going to get you for this."
Jenny's mouth dropped open in shock, then clicked shut again. At that moment the world exploded in to white light and her husband and son disappeared.
Her body jerked suddenly, violently and she found herself lying on the couch under her favorite red comforter. Rod was sitting calmly in the overstuffed chair, reading.
He looked up, smiling. "Hey, beautiful. Did you sleep well?"
"What?" she looked at him with confusion and horror. "Where's Kevin? Where did you take him?"
"I didn't take him anywhere," Rod put the book down, "I was at work when he disappeared, remember? You must have had a bad dream."
"Oh." Jenny rubbed the sleep and confusion from her eyes. "Okay."
"Do you want any breakfast? We have eggs and bacon, but I wasn't going to make anything until you woke up."
"Yeah," she nodded, "Yeah, that would be good." He started to get up, but only made it halfway out of the chair before she spoke again. "Hey, what were you reading?"
He picked the book up again and thumped its cover. "I think I've figured out what happened."
"To Kevin?" she asked, even more confused.
"From that book?"
"Yeah," he thumped it again, "From this book. My mom sent it to me a couple of years ago. It's all about the end of the world." He held it out and pointed at a bulleted list on the back cover. "See?"
She took it and stared at the words he’d pointed to, unable to focus or connect them with what had happened to her son. "What does this have to do with anything?"
"You see that first point," he asked excitedly, "The one that says millions of people worldwide will vanish in the blink of an eye?"
"That's what happened yesterday. Don't you see it?"
"Right..." she nodded, mostly to humor him, "I'm sure that's exactly what happened."
"Just you wait. When the antichrist rises out of Europe, you'll see."
She re-read the second bullet point. "What's an antichrist and how will we know it's coming?"
"I..." he paused, then shrugged, "I really don't know."
"Well," she rolled her eyes, "Maybe you should find out before you get too geeked about this."
Rod scratched his head thoughtfully. "Wait, I know what I'll do," he said.
"Does it involve making me breakfast?" Jenny asked, realizing she felt very hungry.
"I'll do that later. First, I'm going to call my mother." He turned and practically ran for the kitchen.
"Oh, good, your mother," Jenny muttered to herself, standing up. "Guess I'll make my own breakfast, then..."
Some Women I Love
3 weeks ago