www.whyville.net May 27, 2012 Weekly Issue

Guest Writer

Up in Flames: Part 3

Users' Rating
Rate this article

Tick, tock - there goes the clock. The hands were no longer stuck frozen in their previous positions but alive and moving. Counting down hours, minutes, seconds. And each second Alex spent lying on the bed staring at it was being wasted. Until, he was interrupted by a voice.

"Alex! I want you to just pop round to our new neighbor Mr Henry's house and send him our greeting gift." His Mum called out to him from in the kitchen. Alex jumped out of bed and rushed down to the kitchen where he was greeted by the scent of freshly baked biscuits. His mother had baked them as a welcoming surprise for their new next door neighbor.

"Oh, they smell great, Mum." He said and took one himself. Then he bundled the rest of them up in the paper bag his mother tossed to him and made his way up their new hall and to the front door.

Outside was cool and a light breeze was blowing through the garden tossing the leaves of the trees in the wind. Wedged in between the roots of one tree and the fence Alex spotted an abandoned soccer ball. Back in his old home he used to sometimes kick around a ball with his mates on summer evenings. He was pretty good at it and decided to get a bit more practice up while he went over to his new neighbor's house.

He was just dribbling it up the neighbor's lawn when . . . Bam! He accidentally tripped over a garden hose and sent the ball flying. Before he could stand up and retrieve the soccer ball it was already too late . . .

The man's lawn, littered by garden gnomes looked very fragile, just a little too fragile for Alex's giant bouncing ball. It flew straight into one of this man?s precious garden gnomes and smashed off its head.

Alarmed by the sudden noise the door of the man's front house swung open and out stood Alex's new neighbor glaring at him and not looking too hospitable. Mr Henry was not a very young chap. He was very, very old and very, very wrinkly. In the shadows cast by the door and insides of his house he looked like one of those men in midnight horror movies who creep out at night to look for lost or wandering little children to pick up and take home. He even had a cane which he used to hobble further out of the house and approach Alex.

"What do you think you're doing scurrying here so carelessly and knocking down my gnomes?" he scalded. Alex stumbled nervously over the stones and made his way closer to the man.

"My Mum wanted to give these to you as a greeting present." He explained. The wrinkles on the old man's face became less tense than before. "Ah, well, tell your wonderful mother these cookies are highly appreciated on a day like this."

"Yes sir." Alex turned to go back but accidentally stumbled on a rock and jolted his pocket. Our from beneath its material fell the pocket watch. Its glass top cracked as it hit a rock . . .

Guilt washed over Alex. The watch had been passed down to him by his grandfather. And after all these years, today it had only just started ticking. It had never been as fragile before. On multiple occasions he had dropped it on the kitchen or bathroom floor by accident and it still stayed in perfect condition. But today now it had a little crack on its glass. To Alex, it was the worst accident he had ever done.

The old man?s voice interrupted his guilt. "Boy, what is that?" he sounded somewhat astonished. "Give that watch here lad. Let me take a look at it." Alex didn't fell right about showing the watch to the old man but not showing him might seem rude. He brushed the dirt off its cracked glass top and handed it over.

The old man turned it over and over in his hands, surveying it closely. "Where did you get this from?" he inquired.

Alex stumbled to speak. "My, my grandfather passed it down to me." He replied. With an eyebrow raised Mr Henry studied him. "Was Amos your grandfather?"

"Yes sir."

"Well I never, you should have told me in the first place you're my old neighbor's grandson. He had quite a collection of things like this didn't he? Now, you look here boy. This is a very special watch your grandfather gave to you. It is not your ordinary pocket watch. You keep this very safe and protect it and then when the time comes, you just might be able to use it to help you out." Mr Henry said. Then he planted his thumb up over the piece of cracked glass and pushed. It clicked back into place.

He passed it back to Alex and for the first time had a smile on his face. "Thank you." Alex mumbled and quickly popped the watch back in his pocket and picked up the discarded soccer ball that had caused so much trouble. Feeling frightened he raced back down the path and didn?t stop till he made it back to his own house.

Once he was back inside he took out the watch from his pocket to check for any more damage. The place where the glass had cracked seemed to be back in place and apart from a few scratches here and there along its glass it seemed to be relatively fine. But there was something else that also struck Alex about it. Once again, the hands were stuck and had stopped moving.


Did you like this article?
1 Star = Bleh.5 Stars = Props!
Rate it!
Ymail this article to a friend.
Discuss this article in the Forums.

  Back to front page