Aaron and Corbin were playing baseball with their friends in a parking lot several houses down from their home. Corbin and his mom lived in the upstairs apartment in the same house Aaron lived in. Both Aaron and Corbin were seventeen years old. They had been very good friends since they were five years old.
Aaron heard his mom, Sylvia, calling him.
“Hey guys, I have to go.” Aaron waved to his friends and started walking home.
“Aaron,” yelled Corbin as he caught up with him, ” Look at those birds.” He pointed to the front porch. “Have you ever seen anything like that? “
Two red tail hawks were sitting on the porch rail of their home.
“What is so strange about two birds sitting on the porch? Birds do that all the time.”
Corbin’s dad was a bird watcher. Corbin learned about many different types of birds.
“Have you seen two red tail hawks sitting together on your porch before?”
“I saw birds there before, but not that type of bird.”
Corbin paused as he spotted a dove on a branch of a tree in a neighbor’ s yard. “What about doves? Have you seen doves here before?”
“Hawks eat smaller birds. So why is that dove sitting there?” Corbin pointed to the tree.
Aaron shrugged his shoulders.
As they approached the front porch the hawks moved on the rail to the furthest point away from the door.
Corbin noted the door number. “Who put up the new door number.”
“I think my dad did.”
Their address was 935 Smith Street.
Several miles away a tall slender man named Jack Rogers entered a bar and sat at a table. A few moments later his well-built friend David Dryer sat at the same table.
After ordering drinks, David asked how things were going.
“We have a problem.”
“Harry passed away. His house was sold.”
Harry had lived at 935 Smith Street.
“So? What’s the problem?” asked David.
“Harry hid the money in that house.” Jack drank his beer. “There’s two families living there now.”
“Do you know where the money is stashed?”
“Inside the wall.” Jack ordered another beer.
“What’s the plan?”
“I’ll get the money. You watch the kids. I don’t want them showing up while I’m there.”
“When is all this suppose to take place?” asked David.
“As soon as possible.”
“Where do the kids hang out?”
“They spend their afternoons at the arcade in the mall.”
Later that evening, Sylvia was mopping the kitchen floor. After she finished mopping the floor, Sylvia opened a window so that the floor would dry faster.
Her husband, Ryan, was on a business trip and would not be back for a week. Aaron and Corbin had gone to the local mall and would not be back until evening.
While Sylvia was putting the mop and pail away, a dove landed on the window sill. Sylvia chased the bird away and leaned out the window. She saw a car parked across the street, but did not pay much attention to it.
Jack Rogers was in the drivers seat. The car windows were darkly tinted so he did not have to worry about anyone seeing him. He had seen Aaron and Corbin leave the house. He also knew that Corbin’s mom was not home because David Dryer had seen her leave a half hour before.
Jack turned off the engine and got out of the car. He was dressed as a telephone repairman and had a forged identity card. He walked across the street and knocked on Sylvia’s front door.
Jack ignored the dove sitting on the porch rail. He did not see the red tail hawk sitting on the telephone line.
Sylvia opened the door.
“Hi,” Jack showed his card. “We received complaints that people were unable to get in touch with you. I’m here to check it out.”
Sylvia took out her cell phone and dialed her home phone number. The phone in the kitchen rang. “My phone is working fine.” She tried to shut the door.
Jack stuck his foot in the door and revealed a small pistol in his hand.
Sylvia gasped and backed away from the door allowing Jack to enter. He warned her that someone was watching Aaron and Corbin.
David Dryer was sitting on a bench in the mall. He was reading a newspaper while Aaron and Corbin played video games in the arcade. His cell phone rang.
He heard Jack ‘s voice. “Did you find them?”
“You know what to do if they leave before you hear from me.”
“No problem.” David put his cell phone back in his pocket.
Corbin whispered something to Aaron as they walked away from the game. They talked softly.
“Are you sure it was him?” asked Aaron.
“All I know is that I saw him outside when we left the house and he is here now.”
“Okay.” Aaron was in deep thought. “Let’s go to the diner and see if he follows us.”
They walked slowly toward the front door.
“What time is the Yankees game tonight?” asked Aaron as they walked passed David.
“I think it starts at seven.”
“That gives us plenty of time. Let’s go get for something to eat.”
They opened the door and ran as fast as they could. They ran out of the mall and around the side of the building.
David came out and looked up and down the street. He went across the street and got a small flashlight out of the glove compartment of his car. He did not turn on the flashlight. Instead he placed it in his pocket. He kept his hand in the same pocket.
As he glanced down the narrow alley alongside the mall, he saw two kids behind the garbage cans. He quietly approached the garbage cans. The kids paid no attention to him until they saw his bulging pocket. Then they jumped over the fence at the rear of the mall and ran down the street.
“Hey guys, Wait up. I just want to talk to you.” David followed them a short distance down the road then he lost them.
David ducked as a red tail hawk flew over his head. He cursed the hawk as it flew away. He started looking for places the kids could hide. As he was glancing inside a store window, he felt a gun in his back.
“Hand over your gun.”
“I don’t have a gun.” David replied.
“What’s in your pocket?”
“A flashlight.” David slowly took it out of his pocket and held it up. “Who are you?”
“Sam Elridge. Why are you chasing my boys?”
“I’m looking for two boys who ran away. Their mom is very worried about them.” David fibbed.
“What are their names?”
“Aaron and Corbin.”
“You’ve been chasing the wrong boys.” He paused, “Tyler, Riley, come here.”
The two boys peered out from beside the building.
“It’s okay. This guy just wants to ask a few questions.”
“Do you know two boys named Aaron and Corbin?”
“No.” answered Tyler.
“Did you see anyone before I came?”
“Yeah, but it was dark and we couldn’t see who they were.”
“Two boys?” asked David.
“Thanks.” David headed back toward the diner. He arrived just as Aaron and Corbin finished eating. He waited outside for them. The red tail hawk took a nose dive at David forcing him to duck again.
Aaron and Corbin came out of the diner and ran down the street toward home. David started chasing them, but was distracted by the hawk which landed on his head. David tried to grab the hawk with his hands, but the hawk bit his hand.
Sylvia did not fight Jack Robins because she knew someone was watching Aaron and Corbin. She sat in the kitchen chair while he used a hammer to punch a hole in the kitchen wall. When he peered in, he saw a package taped to a stud. He removed the package from the stud, tore one corner off of it and peeked in. The package contained fifty thousand dollars in hundred dollar bills. The money had been stolen from a large bank five years ago.
Sylvia made her move when she heard Aaron’s voice. It was their only chance to survive. She raced to the front door and opened it. She was surprised to see a red tail hawk fly by her and attack Jack. Jack dropped his pistol while trying to fight off the hawk.
Sylvia ran outside to see Aaron and Corbin approaching her. Behind them David was being attacked by the other red tail hawk.
A neighbor peered out her front door.
“Call the police!” Sylvia yelled.
The hawks persisted in their attacks until the police arrived. That’s when Sylvia saw the beautiful white dove land on the porch rail.
As the police placed Jack and David in the police car, the two hawks sat on the porch rail. One sat on each side of the dove. She heard the dove cooing as the three birds flew away.
After the police drove away, Sylvia hugged the two boys.
The money was returned to the bank it was stolen from. Jack and David were convicted of armed robbery and attempted kidnapping.
Sylvia often thought about the two hawks and the dove. The thought of those birds gave her the feeling that she and the boys were being protected.