Chapter 2

Copyright© 2020 by Olga Chinka

The church parking lot was packed with cars. The Christmas play was the biggest event our church put on and everyone was involved in some way.

We found a parking space and I immediately unbuckled my seatbelt, swung the door open and sprang from my seat.

“Meet us here after practice!” I heard my sister shout as I ran towards the building. I was glad the car ride was over with and wanted to find my best friend.

I spotted her on the stage. “Where were you? You’re late!” exclaimed my best friend Taylor.

“We’re always late” I replied as I took my place next to her on the stage.

“Did you come with your sister?”

“Yes. Her and her lame boyfriend. I hate that guy.”

Taylor looks me in the eyes, “there is something really shady about him. He creeps me out.”

“Who Steve?” I ask laughing, “he’s harmless. Just another loser who leeches off my sister.”

“Still. Keep an eye out for him.”

I was confused. Why would Taylor be so suspicious of Steve? He puts on the tough guy act but he’s harmless. Jane would know better than to hang around him if he was trouble, right?

“Okay everyone let’s take it from the top!” Our music director Mr. Whitmore shouts as the music starts to play. The whole cast is on the stage, lined up in rows. We were practicing the carols that would be sung throughout the play. You cannot have a Christmas play without Christmas carols.

Practice goes on for hours. We sing the carols over and over. We practice our lines at least five times. Before we can go home, my sister volunteers us to help finish setting up the set. There are props in various stages of completion. I decide to help paint the barn with Taylor.

As I am painting, out of the corner of my eye I see Steve slip out the back door. He’s checking behind his shoulder, making sure no one sees him. Curious as to where he would go, I decide to follow him.

I find him outside talking to some boys I have never seen. I stay hidden behind the doorway and try my best to hear what they are saying. They’re talking about money, and I see Steve pull out a bundle of dollars and give it to one of the boys. The other boy passes Steve a bag of something that he automatically puts in his pocket.

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