Finding her pet rabbit Liza murdered in the barn was the second worse thing that had ever happened to 14-year-old Harriet. When she saw the hutch lying on its side in the barn like a dead animal, she panicked. She wanted to run and search every corner, but it was like that dream where you’re at the starting blocks, the gun goes off and your legs won’t move. Eventually, a dark trail of blood lead her to the hole in the wall her father used to say said he’d fix. There was poor Liza, half way out – her head strung to her ruby throat by a mere thread. Harriet felt like she was in a scene from Evil Dead.
So now, the first worse thing that had ever happened to Harriet and her rabbit’s death were forever linked. He’d given Liza to her when he’d abandoned them. Now, Liza was dead. The whole thing felt shocking and achy like chewing tinfoil. But still, the first thing she did – after gathering up Liza into the bread bag her mum handed her, and placing her in the chest freezer next to the frozen peas and vanilla ice-cream – was phone her father. [Read more…] about Short Story: ‘A Father’s Return’ by Caroline L. Barron