A friend of mine, Derek Odom, posted Outside the Cabin as a writing prompt on Facebook. Here is the story I came up with off the prompt. I hope y'all enjoy it.
Shelly heard laughter tinkle in from outside the cabin. It was a beautiful day, sunny with a breeze off the water, and the other kids were out enjoying it. Not Shelly. She was staying inside. Where it was safe.
Shelly knew her mother would be disappointed when she found out, and she always found out. Shelly was convinced her mother had spies at camp. How else would she know everything Shelly did and didn’t do?
If only she would have let me stay home, Shelly thought for the thousandth time. I knew this was a bad idea. But, of course, her mother would hear nothing of it. “You have to go to camp, Shelly. All the other children at the club are going.” Shelly started to ask her mother if all the other kids jumped off a cliff would she want her to as well, but then thought better of it. She had heard somewhere not to ask a question you didn’t really want the answer to.
Things went downhill from the start. Actually, before the start.
The other kids started tormenting Shelly on the bus ride to camp.
First, it was the teasing.
“Did your mom have to pay for two seats on the bus? That’s what they do for people like you on planes.”
“Now that you’re here, we can reenact Moby Dick this year for the camp play.”
Then it got worse. The poking. “I just wanted to see if you’d pop.” And the ridicule. “Man, something sure does stink in here.”
Shelly tried to block it all out, to not let it bother her, but she never really could. No matter how big she was, her skin never seemed to grow thicker.
It had been three weeks now and nothing was better. Every day someone made fun of her. The camp counselors were no better. They made Shelly go swimming with the others, knowing what would happen, and they wouldn’t allow Shelly to wear shorts and a t-shirt. No, they made her wear the swimsuit her mother had sent. Shelly lost count of the number of times she heard beached whale.
The games were the worst. Nobody wanted to pick Shelly for his or her team. That was fine for Shelly because she didn’t want to play anyway, but, of course, that was out of the question. She was picked by whoever chose last and then the fun really started.
Shelly couldn’t run, shoot basketball or play any of the other games. Not that the other kids cared. They were only too happy to make sport of Shelly instead. She had more bruises than she could count and ached from head to toe. Shelly wondered if she would survive the next three weeks.
While laughter flowed over her, Shelly cried. Yes, she would stay inside. It wasn’t safe outside the cabin.