It happened the summer I turned nine. We’d wake up early — unlike during the term — and head out to play. There were no parks, no gardens. Just the alleyways. We’d stay out till late playing cricket, hide-and-seek or football, returning only for food.
There was just one forbidden lane. The cul-de-sac with the yellow bungalow.
We didn’t chase our cricket balls there; we never hid there. Until that fateful summer.
We argued with him to not go there. ‘She’s a witch,’ said one. ‘A monster,’ said another.
He laughed at us.
Since his return, he hasn’t spoken.
© Sanch V @Sanch Writes (8 July 2016)