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I Lost My Way and Now it's Gone to Me

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He was walking around the town looking for some kind of job he could do for the days, weeks he would be here, when he saw it. At first, he thought he had imagined it, but as he looked again, he realized it was no figment of his imagination. Pulling the hood over his head, Timothy studied the poster. MISSING CHILD, it read. And right below it was his name and the school photo from the last year he had been in school, taken right before Abed had downloaded the game. He felt a prickle of nostalgia stab him as he looked at the hope in his younger self’s face, so sure of where he belonged, of what his future would hold. Tearing his eyes away from who he used to be, the headline caught in his head. Missing child. Of course his parents would be looking for him. But it had been such a long time…

And also, if people were looking for him, not only might they be caught in Its path, they might actually find him. And if they caught him, they wouldn't let him go, and It would not only catch up to him, but everyone around him. If the hunt had gotten this far… No. He needed to stop them somehow. But how? He couldn't talk to them, had dumped his phone long back not only because of the fact that he could be tracked, by other people, yes, but possibly It too. (He didn’t know how the Thing found Its prey, but he wasn’t about to take any chances). Furthermore, the last time he had really used a smartphone was when he was playing the game that had taken away everyone he had once loved. So… that wasn’t an option. Nothing that could inform his parents of where he was. He needed time to get away. There weren’t many options available to him, and none of them were very good, but he had to make do, he supposed. Rushing back to the dilapidated motel room he was staying in, feet slapping against the worn asphalt, he had a weird mental image of all the times he had been in this exact same position. It wasn’t because of the Slenderman this time, and he had to remember that. He was safe. (Well, as safe as he could ever get.) He wasn’t there. He was right here. Timothy opened the dust-stained doors and stepped into a yellowed lobby lit by florescent lights. Ignoring the bored desk clerk, he started forwards and frantically pressed the elevator buttons. Finally back in the room he slept in, he ripped a piece of paper out of his notebook and grabbed a well-used motel issue pencil from atop the desk. His parents were always practical people. He couldn't tell them the truth, of course, but maybe just a little bit, enough to scare them off, to make them understand.

Dear Mom and Dad, 
Please stop looking for me. Please. You don't understand what you're messing with. It’s after me, and even if you manage to find me , it won't turn out well, not for you, not for anyone with you. The only thing you're doing is putting more people in Its path. I don’t want anyone else to die because of me. I don't want you to die because of me. Please. I've been running for so long. I know It’ll catch up sooner or later. I know it’s only a matter of time before It does. Maybe I should just let It. I miss you, but I need you to stop looking. Please.

I'm not lost, I'm not kidnapped, I know what I'm doing (Hopefully) And besides, I've been gone for years. There are only so many ways you can look. If you haven’t found me by now… Well, by this point, it's not very likely. If I let myself be found, It’ll just catch up with me there, and well you don’t want to see what’ll happen when It catches up with me. I love you, and that’s why I need you to stop looking, for the peace of mind and the safety of all of us.

Don’t reply. I won’t be here by the time the letter gets to you. I’m sorry. For everything.

I love you,