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Brother For Sale - Chapter 5

The neighbour's car revved a couple of times and my eyes flicked open. As it pulled off, its headlights broke in through the curtain-cracks and trespassed across my ceiling. Quiet almost returned but the tick-tock of my alarm clock tormented me out of bed. It was 5:30. I signed into eBay using Mum’s details. My stomach was full of bees.


I couldn’t believe it. There was a message. I sucked in a lungful of air and stepped back from the computer. I tiptoed to the door and pressed my ear against it. Silence.


I sat down and slid the cursor over ‘Inbox.’ I rested my finger, ever so gently, on the left mouse button. My heart banged above the bees.




Hello deary!


I want to buy that little teddy for me granddaughter.


Now listen – I’m a poor, old granny on a pension. Can you do it for £150.00? Send me your address and we’ll be round to collect it at midday.




P.S. It had better work like you said and not cry. I can’t stand crying. It makes me want to smash tea cups against the wall.


I jolted backwards. What had I done? I closed my eyes and saw Todd’s giggling grin, spiraling around my brain. His multi-coloured saliva-bubbles burst and stung my eyeballs.



















Get a grip! Soon it'd be just me and Mum again. But what if she answers the door when the old woman comes round? My heart buzzed and my belly banged.




I yelped and pushed my hand against my mouth.


“Everything OK? You’re up early.”


“Just doing more homework Mum. Don’t come in, I haven’t got my clothes on.”


“Naked homework! I’ve heard it all now.” Her giggles drifted away into Todd’s room. I leapt into the chair and typed as fast as I could.


Dear Maude,


All right - £150.00 but not a penny less.


I live at 28 Lightfoot Avenue. I might not be in when you come round, so just give the money to my son.

See you at 12.




P.S. The teddy works exactly as I said and never, ever cries. You’ll love it!


I shut down and grabbed yesterday’s hooded top, jeans and socks from the floor. I was dressed in seconds and didn’t even gel my hair. Instead, I pulled a cap from my bedpost and forced it on my head.


“Breakfast’s ready Lewis,” Mum called from the bottom of the stairs. “Hurry up - Todd’s missing his big brother.”


My heart drum-rolled. I glimpsed myself in the mirror and threw a towel over my reflection. “Coming Mum.” I opened my bedroom door and the day flooded in.

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