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The Brothers

Copyright 2013 Douglas T. Vale

Cover image courtesy of Jeffbanke /

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The boys shouldn’t have done it. James and Bret knew their father was fond of artifacts said to be enchanted. He even had a special, locked room in the attic where he kept the best stuff. James thought their father kept things there because they were so good they were scary.

They discussed it in James’s room, hiding behind the bed on the ground under a comforter with a flashlight, even though it was daytime. They figured they just needed to wait until both parents were gone to some boring event that would take forever, and then they could stay home and explore the attic room.

James knew that his father thought there was only one key to the attic room, which stayed in his pocket at all times. James also knew his mother had made a copy. James was walking down the stairs one day when he heard his mother talking on the phone to a friend about how secretive her husband could be about some things, and how she hated it. So, she told her friend, she’d show him. She’d made a duplicate of the key to the attic room so she could show him that he wasn’t mister high and mighty, and that they ought to share their secrets. She added that she hadn’t told him yet that she had her own key, and was waiting for the right moment to do so.

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