Co-written by T∅M
In the foothills of North Carolina, there is an old house which stands on the end of an old dirt road called ‘Sleepy Drive’ and in this house, there lives an old man. This old man doesn’t say a word to anyone, won’t even venture into town, he just lives alone and doesn’t bother a soul
One day as the old man was working in his garden, out in his front yard, he noticed a young boy riding down the dirt road on his bicycle, the boy was without a care in the world, however all wasn’t so cheery when the little boys bicycle chain abruptly broke, leaving the boy to sit flat on his behind on the dusty dirt road. The little boy was visibly distraught about his bike, and so witnessing this, the frail old man exited his house and approached the young boy, checking if he was okay, the man tousled the young boy’s hair and began finding a solution to the current situation. It was temporary, but it meant that the boy would be able to ride his bike back home safely.
That night when the little boy got home and sat down to supper with his family, he realized that he had forgotten to thank the old man and resolved to do so the next day. The boy grabbed a container and cut a slice of pie for the kind old man, intending to show him his gratitude.
When the boy got to his house, he knocked on the wooden door, but to his surprise, no one answered. The boy shrugged and placed the container on the porch railing with a note saying “thank you for yesterday”. As the little boy laughed, he figured he had time to kill and decided to go down to the lake for a little bit, just to skip rocks. The young boy was having a good time at the lake tossing the rocks and catching tadpoles when he heard the voices of some known school bullies that happened to show up at the lake. They hadn’t noticed him just yet.
So as he turned and took note of the direction the school bullies were, he figured he should hightail it out of there however, before he could even attempt an escape, it was already too late and they had caught him in the act of leaving. These bullies stood dead in their tracks, the corners of their mouths rose up and they all began to swarm the young boy, like a pack of wild animals. They taunted and teased him and told him to take off all of his clothes. When he did, they grabbed his clothes and tossed them in the lake
Then they forced him to walk home in nothing but his underwear as they rode away with his bike as well. Cold and frightened and also covered in bruises, the little boy walked down Sleepy Drive, and past the old man’s house. Where the old man came back down, took off his jacket and draped it over the boy. He give him the pie container back and thanked the boy for the pie. They were the only words he had ever spoken to anyone, ever. “Thank you”
As the weekend ended, when the little boy went to school, he noticed that one of the bullies was absent that day. The boy began to notice that with each day, one bully from the pack that had attacked him days earlier, were now disappearing one by one and the strangest part was, no one knew why and where the boys were until there was none of them left to disappear. The next day, the town was in uproar. Three missing young boys had turned up dead. The bodies suffered horrific, mangled and seemingly unidentifiable wounds. Complete disregard for the bodies as there was no attempt in modesty or burial for the remains. Words too disturbing and shocking for this small town to even fathom.
One bully was found retrained and tied to a tree, stripped down to nothing but his underwear, and then the second one was found with a bicycle chain wrapped around his throat, strangled to death, then the third and last bully was found laying on the side of the road with what appeared to be tire tracks across his stomach. It was front page in the town newspaper that day and when the little boy saw this. It was as if a light bulb had clicked on in his head, it must have been the old man who did this, it had to be.
After school had ended, the boy resolved to confront the old man and so he made his way down to Sleepy Drive. Once there, he stood on the drive of the old mans lawn, gazing upon the house, the boy felt an air of eeriness, something was off about the house, it was darker than it was before and where there was a garden, lay nothing but weeds. The young boy hesitantly walked up to the door. As he was about to knock, out of the corner of his eye he stumbled upon a note that was addressed to him. It was signed by, you guessed it. The old man.
The boy gasped as he took in the words on the note. “Thank you for your act of kindness, something that I haven’t seen in a very long time. That act of kindness deserved a kindness, one that only I can give you. Just remember this young man. When they say, an eye for an eye, they mean and eye for an eye.”
The little boy was horrified at the reasoning of the old man and that he had left it there. The boy began to question himself. Was even an old man to begin with or did he just imagine the whole thing? The boy composed himself and quickly left for home, got into bed and never spoke to anyone about the old man or the old house that sat at the end of Sleepy Drive.