“Walking Bomb” by Anonymous


It was a normal day. Or so I thought it was. I was just walking home from school, my family lived in the tiny little apartments made specifically for the teachers who couldn’t afford to buy a real house.

My dad was a teacher, and my mom went to high school but didn’t do anything with her education. This morning, when I was leaving for school, she was fussing over how I should leave with my father in the car but there was no way I was going to be late, Father leaves for school almost 30 minutes after school starts. She insisted this because there was a bombing in a nearby church a couple of days ago. “3 girls died,” she said “and they were all black.”

It was common knowledge that the colored people were generally more attacked and more… dumb, but a directed attack to them seemed too far.

After only five minutes, I laid my feet on the giant welcome mat, sitting outside our front door. It was much bigger than the door but my mom had insisted on keeping it since my grandmother had left it behind for us before she died.

Taking a deep breath, I put my hand on the doorknob. My dad comes home early from work on Friday’s, which means that he was probably already here. That meant I had to run from the door to my room to avoid him seeing me.

I push the door open and try to sneak behind the kitchen counters, running but also tiptoeing as fast as I could.

“Rain!” he barked. It was too late, he saw me. “Give me the beer from yesterday. NOW!”

I grabbed three cans from the fridge and threw it at his face, hoping that he wouldn’t be able to catch it. He did.

I ran to my room, hoping he wouldn’t do or say anything else if he didn’t see me. I locked my door trying to do my homework until my mom came to get me for supper. It was about time, I was so hungry that I could eat everything on the table.

We ate dinner in silence until my mom spoke up to break the tension, “So, apparently they found another body at the bomb site.”

I could almost hear my dad’s fork cutting into the ceramic plate. 

“The poor girls,” my mom continued, “They were only Rain’s age. Imagine what this would do to the town’s image.”

“The town’s image is already terrible,” Dad dropped his fork in his food. Picking it up again he muttered under his breath along the lines of “They had what was coming to them.” 

“Mark!” mom shouted, “They are just 4 young girls, is this how you want to raise our child? Make her think that bombs are okay?”

Oh no, this isn’t good. Moms in trouble.

Then the arguing started again. Sick of it all and confused that my father supported such racism, I left to my room.

I walked down the hallway but for some reason passed by my room and kept walking. I don’t know what came over me. The last room in the hallway was my parent’s room so I turned left into it. I wasn’t really sure why maybe I wanted closure after hearing what my parents said but I just had to go in there. I brought myself to my dad’s side of the bed with legs as heavy as steel. I pulled his drawer open, and I wasn’t surprised. There was just normal stuff, medicine for sore throats, random mismatched socks, etc. But then at the very bottom was a piece of paper. The only reason it stood out was that it looked as old as my dead grandmother. Withered away at the edges, I picked it up. It was a blueprint, for some sort. There were measurements and shapes that made no sense to me. I look like it was… a bomb. My dad was making bombs? My curiosity drove me to look through for more blueprints but there weren’t any. I flipped it over, and I was horrified to read what it said. The handwriting was was hard to read but it definitely said ‘black church’ and ‘black girls’

Then I realized. My own dad who I had known my whole life had lied to me. He had helped make the bomb during the bombing. He had made the bombs that killed four children. My own dad had made it. 

As if she were on queue, my mom walked into the room. Without letting her say anything I pointed to the piece of paper in my hand. She walked over and grabbed the paper out of my hand with an angry face. I assume that she was mad at me for walking out of the kitchen but she read the paper anyways. Her face when she saw the stuff it said was probably worse than mine.

Life wasn’t the same after that, it turned out that dad had been drinking more often because he felt guilty about what he had done. He ended up having to serve in prison for the rest of his life. Mom and I moved to a shelter for women and children who couldn’t afford to take care of themselves. I can’t say that life has been terrible. Sure, it came as a shock when I found out that my dad was a murderer, but life has been fun at the shelter, and helping the other girls sweep the floor isn’t the worst. I know that there is a lot to come for me in my life, but I’m just glad that I don’t have to worry about my father attacking anyone ever again.