Tommy hated school trips. Especially this one to the museum. It was the most boring place he’d ever been to! Who in the world was interested in looking at old things that used to belong to people now dead! Okay, so maybe the guns were pretty cool but everything else was boring.
While the teacher was explaining about how folks in 18th century England made their meals, Tommy snuck off to the next gallery. It was filled with writing accoutrements from that time. He passed a glass cabinet which had feathered pens lined up. Quills, he read the tag. They look fancy. He tried to lift up the glass cover and it popped open. He smirked. Gosh, that was easy, he thought. He waited to hear if there was any alarm but none sounded. And no guard came running. He slowly reached in and plucked one of the quills – the one with a peacock feather. He could sell that for a bomb, he figured.
He slid the quill into his jacket pocket and rejoined the group. He left his hand in the pocket, holding the quill, making sure it won’t fall out. He felt a prick and jerked his hand out. There was a tiny pinprick on his palm. Ouch, he grimaced. He rubbed at it but the blood still flowed. He took a handkerchief out and wrapped his palm in it to soak up the blood and put his hand back in his pocket. After a few minutes, he felt another pinprick and he jerked his hand out again. This time on his palm was the letter ‘I’. He used his handkerchief and rubbed at it. It disappeared.
Tommy was getting frightened. He hid his hand in his pocket and within the next few minutes, he was screaming in pain trying to jerk his hand again out of his pocket. The group stopped and his teacher went to him to find out what was wrong. Tommy was on the ground in excruciating pain, the quill with the peacock feather moving slowly along his palm, held by invisible hands writing, ‘I will not steal. I will not steal. I will not steal.’