“Tommy! Tommy!” Hissed Lizzy, “Whata ya doin scaren up that deer like that? Sorry Lizzy I must of stepped into its hiding spot or something. I was just trying to stay up with the kids so’s not loose um and that ole deer come running out of the woods making more noise than a freight train. It scared me half to death too,” whispered Tommy.
“It’s no wonder that little boy screamed so loud, that deer nearly ran right over him and all,” stated Lizzy. “Now we gotta chase after them kids even further to get them packs.
All come on Lizzy I’m getting tired of chasing them kids,” moaned Tommy. “You wanta eat don’t ya?” snapped Lizzy. Tears started running down Tommy’s cheeks and he bit his lip and turned away from Lizzy so she wouldn’t see him crying.
Tommy was getting really tired of running and it seemed like they had been running for months ever since their mom died and that grumpy old lady from the child services told Lizzy they would each be going to a different foster homes.
Lizzy had decided the moment the old lady told them to go and pack some clothes that they had to run away in order to stay together, so when the lady went upstairs to Tommy and Lizzy’s room to help get their bags Lizzy grabbed Tommy and took off running through the back alleys.
Tommy could hear the lady yelling for them to stop but Lizzy squeezed his hand tighter and they kept on running never looking back and they’d been running ever since; finding empty homes and buildings to sleep and hide in, rummaging through garbage dumpsters looking for food.
They stopped at a home once and asked the lady living there for some food, but when they were sitting at the table eating they overheard the lady talking to the police. Lizzy stuffed as much of the food as she could in her pockets and grabbed Tommy’s hand and they ran out the back door, again hearing the yelling behind them to stop.
It was at that point that Lizzy decided it was too dangerous for them to go up to people and ask or expect any help and they would have to find other ways to find food. It was that night they snuck into someone’s garage and found a pantry area loaded with canned foods.
Lizzy took canned food from the back of the pantry a trick she remember reading in a mystery story, where the man on the run took food and cans from the back so no one could tell stuff had been stolen. After finding a can opener in the garage Lizzy had managed to find a way to provide the two of them food, just as long as they didn’t get caught.
Lizzy felt bad for snapping at Tommy about finding food to eat. She stepped up to him and put her arms around him bringing him out of his deep thoughts. At that Tommy couldn’t hold back the tears any longer and started crying quietly and turned around and put his head on Lizzy’s shoulder. Lizzy’s hug felt warm and comforting to Tommy, she reminded him of their mom.
As hard as Tommy tried to hold back the tears he couldn’t stop them once Lizzy put her arms around him. All the fear, pain, and hardship came rushing out of him and for several minutes the two children held each other sobbing. “I miss Mommy Liz. Why did she have to leave us? I don’t know Tommy, I miss her too,” whispered Lizzy. “It was her time to go, but I know sure as we’re hear together she’s hear watching over us doing all she can to help us stay safe and together,”
It was several minutes before Tommy was able to stop crying and he then stepped back from Lizzy feeling a little better wiping the tears from his cheeks and snuffing his nose.
His gaze on Lizzy became more serious, “Lizzy, what are we gonna do, we can’t keep running like this forever we have to find someone to help us?” Whispered Tommy. “You want to stay together don’t you?” Warned Lizzy. “Yea, but not like this, this is hard. We’re stealing and we’re hungry all the time, we’re cold when it rains, its dark and scary at night with rats and other animals running around while we try to sleep, and it’s not going to stay summer forever in a few months it will be winter again. We can’t keep running and have you smelled yourself lately we ain’t had a decent bath in weeks. Shoot, I never thought I’d ever say that in my life, but I’ve been wearing the same clothes now for weeks and we stink!” complained Tommy.
“Something will come up Tommy I’m sure of it, but it may take some time. We have to keep looking for the right place that no one can find and come and take us away. We have to stay together. I couldn’t live if I lost another person I love Tommy. first Dad in Afganistan and now Mom to Cancer. We have to stay together we just have too we’ve been through too much. We need each other. I need you.”
“I get it Lizzy, but we don’t have any clothes, barely any food, and where are going to find a place for the winter?” Replied Tommy. “And I don’t want to live in some foster home either, especially without you,” continued Tommy. “But if we get caught aren’t we going to go to jail and be separated anyway? That’s just it! We can’t get caught,” stated Lizzy.
The more Lizzy talked the more Tommy realized how she was so much like their mom. Their mom was kind and quite especially more since dad had died in the war, but when it came to Lizzy or him their mom wouldn’t back down to anyone. Lizzy was like that now, not only did she look like mom, but she was beginning to act like her.
It seemed like ages ago when their mom asked the two of them to sit with her in the living room and she told them about her having cancer and that there wasn’t anything the Doctors could do to help. Mom tried to explain to us what would happen to us since we didn’t have any living relatives to go live with, but Lizzy got real upset when mom said we may not grow up together. Lizzy stormed out the room yelling and crying at the same time. Mom took my hand and whispered it would be ok, she’ll come around and then mom hugged me hanging on to me for a long time.
Why was God doing this to us he wondered? Wasn’t it enough that their dad died serving our country and now God needed to take our mom away too? And now here they are in a strange place, running and hiding from everyone, stealing food, dirty, cold, and scared.
“Come on let’s go before we lose the trail of those kids,” replied Lizzy as she shook Tommy. Tommy noted she seemed even more resolved than ever to see this through and find a place the two of them could live together without having to worry someone would split them apart, or worse send them to jail.