It was Tom's idea to hide in the shack. He said we could hole up there for as long as we needed. He said they wouldn't think to look for us on the other side of Cankers Field, that if we could be brave we would be safe.
So we packed in secret – water, bread, blankets – wrapped our feet and legs in as many layers as we could find, covered our faces with the dampened dishcloths we'd pilfered from Ma's kitchen, our hands with the pink rubber gloves she always wore for cleaning.
By the time we reached the field, the sun had risen and the fog burned so bright it stung our eyes. It must have hurt Tom's more than it hurt mine 'cause when he looked down at me, I saw tears vanish beneath his mask.
"Don't be scared," he said, taking my hand. "We just have to keep moving. Don't stop."
"Keep moving," I whispered, nodding. "Don't stop."
Half-way across the field, we heard a shout. "Boys! Boys!" Pa's voice didn't shake the skies like it usually did. It sounded small and weak. "Come back, boys. Please come back."
I tried to turn around, but Tom yanked my arm. We kept going.
30 April 2013