Imaginif prompts for daily writers.
If you wish to join the Writers Prompt Daily simply use the below photo (changes daily) as a prompt and post a short story, poem or paragraph to your blog. Leave a comment and your link here so that all participants can come to you and read/comment/encourage. Stories below are copyright and are Megan Bayliss' writing around the below daily picture prompt.

Kidnapping. Saying "NO," is Child Protection.

I saved my little brother from kidnapping when I was just seven years old. I don't know why I saved him because I hated him and I wished to send him away. He was a three-year-old pest! He’d get into my bedroom when I was at school, pull out my toys, tear my books and touch my jewellery.

To this very day, I tell my brother he owes me for rescuing him. My other brothers and sister tell me not to be so mean but if I don't stay mean he might think an alien has stolen the real me. He is used to me picking on him but... he is also used to me sticking up for him when things are going wrong. How to stick up for him is something I did without thinking on the day the kidnapper tried to steal him.

It was a very hot day and all of the families in the barracks where we lived were having picnics at the pool. Everyone was busy - swimming, eating, watching diving competitions, judging splashes. My Mum had five kids to watch so we older kids had to help with the little ones. I so didn't want to watch Drew but Mum told me that all big sisters had to suffer little brothers and that I would be sad if ever anything happened to him.

Mum gave me some money and asked me to run across to the shop to buy some ice-blocks. I was excited. She trusted me with the money AND to go to the shop alone. "Take Drew with you," she said.

"Bum! I hate him. He's a pest."

Mum gave me a look of "don't make me punish you in public".

In his usual pest like state, Drew ran ahead of me down the windy path that led to the far-away road we had to cross. Hidden from view from both the pool and the road the path wound its way through beautiful tropical gardens. The gardens were a jungle. The plants were so close together that a dog would have had a hard time trying to get in for a pee. The winding path and the magical jungle made it impossible to see too far ahead. We had no idea what was around the next bend and we loved it. It was a treasure waiting to be found.

Drew ran ahead of me and I lost sight of him. A pest he may have been but I was worried because I couldn't see him. It didn't matter how much he destroyed my belongings he was my little brother, my family and I wanted him to be safe.

I started to run so that I could catch him before he got to the road. What would happen if he ran straight into the cars? My tummy felt all jumbly, like I had a big snake squirming around in there.

I couldn't hear him. No running footsteps, no singing; nothing. As I rounded a bend in the shadowed path, I came upon a man I had never seen. He had Drew by the hand and was pulling him into the jungle. Without even thinking about it, I grabbed Drew by the other hand and started a tug-of-war.

I don't know where my words came from; they just fell out of my mouth without any planning.

"Where are you taking my brother?"

"We're going for a drive because it's too hot for running."

"My Mum would say no. We are swimming and going to eat ice-blocks." The tug-a-war kept happening.

"I know your Dad. He asked me to come and take you for a drive." The man was in army uniform and we were at the army swimming pool. My Dad was the army boss so it could be true.

"No." I knew it wasn’t true. "Give him back to me. He isn't going anywhere. He is my brother. Give him to me."

The man in army uniform tried to trick me, "Your father said I have to take him. Father is waiting."

Somehow, and I don't know how, my thoughts were clear. My body was scared. My knees were shaking and my arms were tired of pulling. My poor little legs were jelly. The muscles were working hard to keep my footing and balance. My thoughts though, were clear. I knew that this man was phony. No soldier that I knew would have a prickly face, dare to walk around in an un-ironed uniform or without his hat and proper boots. This man had stolen the uniform and he was BAD.

I prayed to God, "Please help me. I'm not strong enough to save my brother."

I gave one big pull and said, "We'll just go back and ask Mum is it okay then."

The man let go. Drew flew back into me and knocked me over. The man disappeared. He melted into the jungle and I couldn't see him anywhere.

I hugged Drew, and we RAN back to Mum. I started crying and I couldn't talk. My body was shaking all over and I had to sit down. Drew came and snuggled into me and patted my hand.

"Take a deep breath," Mum coached me. "Tell me what happened."

People gathered around. Everyone wanted to help. I told the crowd that a man tried to steal Drew. The man was in Army uniform and had a little beard. He had black skin, red socks, and shoes that didn't belong with his army uniform.

Well, the army dads there ran down the path and began their manhunt. Nobody was going to hurt children and get away with it. They never caught the man though – he was long gone.

Drew and I became friends (I always had to look after him after that!). I learnt that he wasn’t too bad and that my memory was good. Even when I’m scared, I now know that my mind can remain strong, that my eyes see important things and that my brain will remember.

Could your child say "no"? What do you do to practice saying "no?" Tomorrow I'll give you some parent tips on helping your child to say "no."

Related article on the protective behaviour step of, Say No: BITSS of Say No.

Photo (Tug O' War) courtesy of KevinKLuu at stock.xchng

1 Response to "Kidnapping. Saying "NO," is Child Protection."

Jenny said...

Wow. that is quite a story... I still have goose bumps. Thanks for sharing!

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