Tony was shining a flashlight here and there on the dark street for the second time in two nights. He illuminated the plastic garbage can pulled to the roadside for pickup in the morning. A white bag, stacked on two others, peaked above the rim.

He pointed the light toward bushes and brush across the road, then up and down the road itself. He saw no movement.

Tony went back inside. Then a few minutes later, he heard it again. The garbage can was moving, scraping on the cement.

Back outside, he lifted the top back and investigated. The flashlight’s beam was bright inside the can. He could see nothing that would be disturbing it. He replaced the bag and again illuminated the surroundings. He heard crickets and cars in the distance but little else.

Last night, he’d heard an SUV screech. The horn blasted. Then it sped on. More »