It started a normal day, like any other day. Esther was walking home from preschool with her loving father. At the innocent age of six, she was carefree and joyful; humming a happy tune as she walked alongside her parent.
In her hands Esther held a plush toy of a horse; its deep blue color of its soft material matched her beautiful eyes. Her hair was a silky black color and flowed down her back. She got her hair from her mother, and her eyes were from her father.
Esther’s mother died when she was only three years old. She couldn’t remember how she had died, but she could still remember her loving face and lovely voice singing a lullaby to her. Her mother and father used to sing her to sleep, but ever since her mother had died, her father never sang that song again. There were too many memories in those sweet verses.
Father was the only one she had in this world, and she was perfectly fine with that. They walked to the preschool together and back every day, sometimes he would carry her on his shoulders; and sometimes they would sing a happy song together. Esther smiled up at her father, and he smiled back. But the smile faded. He took her hand and started walking faster.
“Daddy what’s wrong?” She asked; her blue eyes full of wonder.
“Nothing sweetie, just keep walking.” He walked briskly; she was starting to have a little trouble catching up.
“Daddy you’re going so fast! I-” She stumbled over her own feet and fell to the sidewalk. A tear dropped from her eye due to the pain of a scraped knee, but she picked up her blue horse plush that had dropped and got to her feet. Esther wiped her eyes and said no more of the injury; her father always said she was tough.
Then she saw why her father had sped up; there was a man following them; a big intimidating one. He wore a black zip-up sweatshirt, in was open and he was holding something under it. Covering his face was a black bandanna, and his hood was over his head. The only part of him not covered by clothing was his eyes, his cold and malicious eyes.
Her father grabbed Esther’s hand and started to walk again, but the sound of a click made him freeze.
“Give me all your money.” The man demanded in a raspy voice. Her father slowly turned around to look at him. The man had drawn a gun that he had previously hidden, and was pointing it at them. Not at her father, but at Esther.
“Give it or the little girlie gets it right between the eyes.”
“D-daddy!? What’s-!?” Esther clung to her father.
“Shut up!” The man coughed, and he held out one of his hands to receive money.
“Okay! Just don’t hurt her!” Her father replied quickly, he reached into his pocket to take out his wallet. The man suddenly stopped looking at them and looked at someone behind them. Esther’s curiosity overcame her fear, and she turned around to see what he was looking at.
Walking towards them was another man. He was still not close enough to see who it was, but he didn’t seem to have noticed them. He was very tall, and wore all black with the exception of a silvery tie. Esther couldn’t see his face, as it was partially covered by the top of the trench coat he wore and a hat, and partially enveloped in a cloud of smoke rising from a cigarette in his mouth.
“Get into that alley; now!” The man ordered quietly, pointing at an alley with the barrel of his gun. They entered the alley, and the man told them to shut up and not make any noise. In a short amount of time, they saw the tall man in the trench coat walk by; not even taking a second look at the alleyway.
“Now, give me what I want!” The man demanded again, and Esther’s father quickly pulled out his wallet. The man snatched it from his hand and dug through it.
“That’s it!? Impossible! You’re hiding something from me!” The man tossed the nearly empty wallet to the ground and pressed the barrel of the gun up to her father’s neck. “You’re hiding something, give it to me!”
“No I swear that’s all I have!” Her father said quickly, “Now let me go!”
“No! Not until I get more! If I don’t get any more in five seconds; I’ll kill you!” The man held up his other hand and began counting down five seconds.
“Esther! Run!” Her father shouted, “Run as fast as you can!”
“You’re not going anywhere!” The man shouted and turned, he shot at Esther. The bullet missed her, but took off one of the hooves of the little blue horse plush. Esther screamed and ran down the alleyway, turning one last time to see her father say his last words.
“Esther! Daddy loves you!”
“Five seconds are up!” The man pulled the trigger, and her father fell to the ground, lifeless. Esther wailed as tears fell from her eyes, and she fell down behind an old box, hugging her wounded plush horse tightly. The man began to search her father for more money. After finding nothing, he stood up angrily. Disregarding Esther, he turned towards the entryway of the alley; only to be blocked by a tall figure.
It was the man they had seen earlier. He wore a black hat, trench coat, and shirt along with a silvery tie. His face was covered by a bandana with a terrifying face painted on, and sticking out from beneath it was a lit cigarette.
The man pointed his gun at this strange person and shouted at him, “You! Give me all your money!”
The tall man merely stood there, the painted eyes on his bandana staring, unsettling the man.
“I said, give me your money!” The man shouted again, and the tall man didn’t respond. “That’s it! You asked for it!” The man shot him right in the chest. He didn’t do anything that showed pain, he only took the cigarette out of his mouth and tossed it to the ground. Black blood welled up from the bullet hole in his chest, but he didn’t seem to care. He emitted a low growl.
The man gasped in fear and backed up slowly. The tall man took a step forward; the growl grew louder and angrier.
“Hey man- I-I-I’m sorry! You can keep your money! Take this too!” He stooped down and grabbed the wallet that he had previously tossed aside, and threw it at the tall man.
Large barbwire-like tendrils emerged from the tall man’s back, and the low growl turned into a roar. The man shrieked and dropped his gun. He turned to run, but the tall man shot out a red-gloved hand and grabbed him by the back of the head. He lifted him several feet off of the ground. He held him there for a few seconds, watching him struggle to get free in vain. The tall man laughed a deep sadistic laugh.
As quickly as his hand had shot out, he slammed the man’s face into the wall. He did this with such force that when he dropped the now dead body, his face was hardly recognizable.
The tall man reached into one of his pockets and brought out a pack of cigarettes and a lighter. He put one in his mouth and lit it, and then replaced the items in his pocket.
Esther watched. Tears ran down her face, but she was silent. The tall man had not noticed her. She didn’t know what to do. Part of her wanted to run up and hug the man; he had killed her father’s murderer. She wanted to show some kind of gratitude. She looked down into the beady black eyes of the blue plush horse, wondering what to do.
When Esther looked back up, the man was gone. He had disappeared just as fast as he had appeared; the only evidence of him actually having been there was a dead body and a cigarette.
Esther was alone. The only one she had had in this world, her father, was gone. Now the only one she had was this wounded blue horse plush; the wounded blue horse plush and that tall man.