Where Nobody Can Find Me

A/N: I got this idea while watching the movie, Hide and Seek. While it wasn't the best scary movie I ever saw, I did enjoy it and I wanted to write about how Emily's and "Charlie's" first meeting might have gone, if we had been allowed to see it. Enjoy! Feedback is welcome, but no flames please.

Daddy came out of the cave. I was so surprised I dropped Alex; she landed in the mud.

He was grinning. Not smiling, grinning, like he'd just heard the funniest joke in the world. He hadn't grinned like that since Mommy died. "Hi, Emily", he said.

"Hi, Daddy." I said.

He shook his head, it made his glasses twinkle in the sun. "I'm not your Daddy", he said.

I just stared at him. I had no idea what to say. Was he playing a game?

He chuckled at the look on my face. "You can call me Charlie. You like games, Emily?"

I nodded slowly. It had been ages since he'd played with me. When Mommy was alive, she would take me to the park and spin me on the merry-go-round or we'd swing on the swings together. At home, we played Candy Land and Monopoly and Uno. Daddy never played; he always said he was too busy.

"What's your favorite game?", he asked. He walked closer and opened his hand. Pieces of bright orange, bits of the butterfly I had been chasing fell from it. A tiny curl of fear unfolded in my tummy. I didn't know if I wanted to play with this "Charlie", but I answered, "Hide and seek."

He laughed. It was a strong, happy laugh. Not like my Daddy's at all. "Mine too! Are you a good hider?"

"I guess."

"I bet you are. But I bet you're not as good as I am. Where I hide, nobody can find me." He was right in front of me and he leaned down and whispered in my ear, "Guess where I hide, Emily?"


"Inside your Daddy!" Charlie threw his head back and laughed again. "But you can't tell anyone. Ever, okay? It has to be our secret. If you don't tell on me, we can be friends."

I thought about that. I was still a little scared, but I liked the idea of having a friend. "Okay", I said.

He straightened up and clapped his hands. "All right! Want to play hide and seek? You can hide and I'll find you." Walking to a nearby tree, he put his face against it and began to count, "One one-thousand, two one-thousand, three one-thousand..."

I slipped past him and ran into the cave. I crouched behind a big rock and waited. Outside, the counting stopped and I heard Charlie walking through the crunchy leaves outside the cave entrance. There was only one problem, though.

His steps were moving away. Back towards the house.