by Sarah Pasquarelli (249 words)

Seven years ago he sat in his home with his wife and his sister. They were all playing a board game, the television on in the background. His sister always hated games because she wasn’t any good.

He decided to let her win that night.

His wife winked in agreement.


Two years ago he ran down the street toward his home with his wife and his sister. The town over was being attacked by a monster, a creature so powerful it could burn a city to the ground.

But their home was still their safe place.


One year ago he ran barefoot down the street away from his home. It had burned to the ground along with the rest of the street. So he ran toward his family. His sister and his wife.

His family was still his safe place.


Six months ago he ran. He was ran like mad with no direction, no idea where to go. His entire city had burned to the ground. Along with his sister. Along with his wife.

He had no safe place.

So he ran to a place where people didn’t believe in monsters. He knew that this place was safe. Far enough away from the creature that had destroyed his home. His family. His safe place.

He wanted to meet his new neighbor who had never seen a monster before. Maybe play a board game with him. He reached out his hand, but the neighbor said, “Go home.”