Billy always tried to be careful whenever he did anything or went anywhere; some of the other children would call him a coward, but he did not care. Some of the times they would try and trick him into doing something they knew he did not like, but as soon as he became aware of them, he would walk away, even as they laughed.
One day after school, the rain was falling terribly and all the students had to wait for it to stop before they could leave. Finally, it did and they were able to make their way home. Some of the older children wanted to take a shorter path home, but that path had to be made on a bridge that crossed the river. The water must be really high now especially after all that rainfall and the route might not be safe, so Billy told them he would rather take the long way around. They tried to tell him that if it started raining again, he would get wet and possibly sick. He might as well go with them and cross the bridge and get home quickly. Billy thought about it for a second, and then looked up at the sky; he told them he would take his chances with the rain. They all went along the path-only one other little girl went the long way with Billy. They walked quickly and happened to make it to the village before the rains started again. When they crossed the path where the other children should be, they were nowhere in sight; Billy figured they had already passed that way. He did not realise they hadn’t until some of the parents started asking for them. Billy told them they had tried to cross the bridge. Immediately some of the other adults went along the path to see if they could be found.
By then the rains had begun to drizzle and Billy ran home before he got wet. The next day he learned that when they got to the bridge, it had broken and the water was almost at the top. They had to go back and walk all the way around, and by then the rains had come again and they got wet before they could make it home. Billy was very glad he had walked the long way around in the first place.
Better to be safe than to be sorry.
By Kerry Ann Stewart
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