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"Give me a hand, will you?" I said to the man.
"I need you to lift me up so I can see in the window."

He looked up at the window, and he looked at me.

I pried my shoes off.

"Come on," I pleaded, "just a quick lift. I'm lighter than I look. Honest."

He sighed, bent over, and laced his fingers into a stirrup. I stepped into it and he hoisted me up.

A patch of sunlight cut through the darkened room, and dust motes danced lazily in its beam.

Mrs. Turner's bed had been torn apart, the mattresses cast to the floor and slit. Drawers hung from the dresser like protruding lips. The closet door stood open. Clothes and hangers were scattered on the floor. In some places, wall paper hung from the wall in neat strips.

Mrs. Turner sat in an overstuffed chair. It had been shoved into a corner facing the window. She sat well back in the chair, her head leaning to one side as if she were tired. The other side of it was missing. I was screaming by the time I hit the ground...
      Excerpt from
      Somebody Else's Child
Also by Terris McMahan Grimes:
      Blood Will Tell

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