to consider the possibilities of the matter," said the superintendent. "Assumin' that the wood 'as been thoroughly searched, where did she get out of it?"
"Searched!" growled old Jenks. "There ain't a inch as I 'aven't searched an' seen--not a inch."
"The kidnappin' the'ry," went on the superintendent, ignoring him and turning to mother, "I don't incline to. 'Owever, we must go to work in order, an' I'll 'ave my men up 'ere and make sure of the wood. All gypsies an' tramps will be stopped and interrogated. I don't think there's no cause for you to feel anxious, ma'am; I 'ope to 'ave some news for you in the course of the afternoon."
They watched him free-wheel down the lane and shoot round the corner.
"Oh, dear," said mother then; "why doesn't the baby come? I wish daddy weren't away."
Now that the police had entered the affair, Joyce felt that there remained nothing to be done. Uniformed authority was in charge of events; it could not fail to find Joan. She had a vision of
An ornately-written story of a 5 year old child who wanders off into the local forest and is seemingly abducted by the women who live in the forest.
It's a sedate, old-fashioned fairy story, well-done for its type.
Wood-Ladies by Perceval Gibbon (1879-1926) is an eerie little tale of growing suspense that borders between dark fantasy and horror. A little five-year old girl becomes lost in a familiar wood and the question is did she drown in the pond, or was she kidnapped by tramps?
Or could her predicament be far, far worse?
This tale is well worth the 15 minute read.
Craig Alan Loewen
2013 SFR GALAXY AWARD WINNER
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