If she hadn't seen it with her own eyes, Mrs. Wolfe would have never believed it. Hell, even having seen it, she could hardly believe it. But no matter how fantastic it seemed, she really had watched her next door neighbor Dave regressed into childhood by his stepson, Aaron.
Now she could hardly be blamed for seeing it. After all, if they insisted on not putting a curtain in front of that large kitchen window, she could hardly be held responsible for seeing what happened inside their house. She would never consider herself a snoop; she was an observer, and for over a year now she had observed as that cruel man beat his stepson over what she considered the stupidest things. She had considered calling the police several times and reporting it, but living alone as she did, it would hardly do any good to make trouble, especially for someone with Dave's temper.
"I guess I don't have to worry about his temper anymore," she jokingly thought.
Even so, she still couldn't believe what she had just witnessed.
"How could that boy have done that? He just grabbed that man's wrist and all of a sudden the years just stripped off of him. Amazing!"
She had to admit, she was excited the whole time she watched Dave go through his ordeal. Sure, she felt bad for him, reduced into a small child, but another part of her wondered, "Can that boy do that whenever he wants, I mean, do you think he would use it on me if I asked him?"
At 85, she was far from the prime of her life, and the thought of being 25 years old again was more than she had ever hoped. And yet now, she had to admit, it could very well become a reality.
But how to approach him. She wasn't sure yet, but one thing was for sure, at her age, she couldn't afford to wait much longer.
Meanwhile, Aaron was experiencing his own dilemma: what to do with an active 3-year-old?
"Jesus, what have I gotten myself into," he thought, as he watched little Dave run around the house creating all sorts of havoc.
Still, thank God his mother had saved everything she had ever bought for him when he was growing up, so that he was able to clothe Dave in some toddler underpants and some plastic training pants. He wasn't sure at what age he was potty trained at and wasn't sure if he needed to buy diapers for Dave or not, so he figured the plastic training pants was a nice compromise 'til he found out.
Looking at little Dave, it was hard to believe that this precocious child was his stepfather. Sure he was wild as all get out, but it was impossible to see the former man in the boy. He was so cute and innocent now.
"Now if he would just wear himself out so I can put him to bed. God, this has been a long day."
It was then he heard the knocking at the door.
"Oh sh*t, who could that be," he thought.
With Dave running around making all sorts of noise, there was no way he could pretend no one was home. The last thing he needed was someone calling the police thinking there was a child left alone in the house.
"Sh*t, sh*t, sh*t," he thought.
Walking towards the door, he glanced at himself in the mirror, and realized how odd he looked. Gone was the short-sleeved t-shirt he was wearing earlier, and in its place was a long-sleeved shirt and a pair of gloves to make sure that he couldn't accidentally touch anyone, or possibly regress Dave anymore. Still, considering it was in the 70's outside, he looked rather odd.
"Well, nothing I can do about that now," he thought as he started back towards the door.
Looking through the little eyehole in the door, Aaron recognized Mrs. Wolfe from next door.
"What the hell can she want? She's never come over her before."
Opening the door just enough to poke his head around, Aaron asked, "Hello Mrs. Wolfe, is there something I could do for you?"
"I hope so, Aaron," Mrs. Wolfe replied. Gathering her courage, she added, "I saw what happened in the kitchen."
"What do you mean," Aaron said, panic creeping into his voice.
"With your stepfather. I can help you with him, you know. I raised 3 kids of my own."
"I didn't mean to do it, Mrs. Wolfe, honest. I can't control it when it happens."
"Don't you think we should talk about this inside the house, Aaron. It might not be the best thing to discuss in public."
"Oh yeah, right," Aaron said, opening the door and letting Mrs. Wolfe in.
Walking into the house, she looked over to the couch where Dave lay passed out and said, "Looks like the little bugger wore himself out, huh?"
"Yeah, I guess so. Thank God!"
"So you really can't control it?" Mrs. Wolfe asked.
"Nope, not at all. When I touch someone or they touch me on my hands or arms, it just happens."
"Have you really tried to control it, or were you too caught up in it to even try?"
"Well, the first time I did it, I wished that it would stop and it didn't."
"But that's not the same as concentrating on it. Maybe you could learn to control it if you practiced with it."
"How the hell do I do that," Aaron replied. "If you're wrong, anyone I touch turns into a little kid. I can't just do that to people."
"I think I have a guinea pig for you," Mrs. Wolfe responded.
"Oh heavens no. At least not yet. But I do know someone whom your ability might be a blessing for. Several people actually. You see, I have this friend I visit at Liberty Manor."
"You mean the old folk's home? No offense," he added.
"None taken. And yes, the old folk's home. Don't you see, it's perfect. Now listen closely, this is my plan."
to be continued