What is Mine



He sat far enough away that he did not draw their attention, yet close enough so that bits and pieces of their conversation wafted within range of his hearing.

His keen eyes focused on nothing but the scene before him. He had no concerns that he would be disturbed from his observations. The trio of burly guards scattered close nearby ensured his privacy.

He stiffened as two others joined the group already there. They were obviously known; a dark-haired woman in her mid-twenties accompanied by a lively toddler of two.

After a few moments of conversation, the woman moved off from the group. The child, who had been impatient at the delay, pulled the woman toward the playground equipment near the place where the man sat.

“'lide, Mama!” the little boy demanded, pulling the young woman toward a three-foot high plastic slide. Obediently she steadied him as he labored his way up the broad steps, and with a squeal of delight slid down the short incline.


For nearly ten minutes the silent stranger watched the scene repeat itself. The little boy possessed what seemed to be an unending reservoir of both energy and determination. From everything the stranger could see, he was a happy, healthy little boy.


“Aren't you tired yet, little man?” The deep voice, filled with laughter, stopped cold the toddler in the middle of climbing the slide's steps once more. His mother grabbed him as he flung himself to the ground.

“Daddy!” he cried, wriggling out of his mother's safe grip. “Daddy!”

Watching the child run to the newcomer's arms instilled a sense of urgency in the man. He removed a cellular phone from his pocket and dialed a series of numbers. “Set things into motion,” he commanded tersely. “I intend to reclaim my son.”