Think Before You Act

Think Before You Act

From Chicken Soup for the Preteen Soul

Think Before You Act

It was a cold evening, the night before Halloween, when something happened in my town that no one will ever forget. During lunchtime at school, some girls who were my brother’s friends told him about a plan that they had to toilet paper a guy’s house. They had already been playing pranks on this guy, and they were laughing about what his house would look like when they were through with it. My brother told me later that he knew what they were planning on doing was wrong, but he didn’t say anything to the girls. Now, he wishes he would have.

That night my brother’s six friends stayed overnight at one of the girl’s houses. In the middle of the night, they sneaked out of the house. They piled into one of the girl’s small blue car and set off to play their little prank. When they got to the guy’s house, everything went as planned—until they got caught. The guy that they were playing the prank on came outside and saw them. Laughing, they all ran to the car and hopped in, hoping to get away. The guy got into his car and chased after them, trying to identify them. He was right on their tail, and it scared the girls really badly. They were not sure what he would do to them if he caught them, so they went faster.

Then, when they were turning on a blind curve in the road, they lost control of the car and hit a tree head-on. Three of the girls were ejected from the car and were killed instantly. The other three girls were seriously injured. One of the girls had just enough strength to get out of the car and go to a nearby house. The people who answered the door were afraid of her and didn’t even believe that there had been an accident. They said, “Yeah, right, you really got into a wreck,” and they would not call the police.

The three girls that died were all honor-roll students and were looking ahead to doing something great with their lives. But all of their dreams were shattered when they hit the tree on that cold night. Only one of my brother’s friends was wearing a seat belt, and she was one of the survivors. Now whenever I get into a car, I think about the accident and put on my seat belt.

The guy that chased them went to court. All he got was a ticket for running a stop sign and for speeding. I often wonder if he feels anything at all about the death of the girls in that car that he chased. My brother feels bad that he didn’t say anything to his friends that day when they told him what they were planning on doing. They still might have gone on their mission regardless of what he said, but he might have saved his friends’ lives. We’ll never know. So many people have suffered because of a stupid act that was never meant to go wrong.

The only good thing that came from this tragic event is that the mother of one of the deceased girls is setting up a teen center in town in memory of the girls that died. Now there will be a place for teens. Maybe that will keep some of them from getting into situations like this by providing a place to hang out and have fun, to talk to each other and hopefully give them a chance to help them think before they act.

Lauren Wheeler, twelve

You are currently enjoying a preview of this book.

Sign up here to get a Chicken Soup for the Soul story emailed to you every day for free!

Please note: Our premium story access has been discontinued (see more info).

view counter

More stories from our partners