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Grandfather Clock

Note: This is a writing prompt exercise borrowed from here. Per the rules of the prompt, I've limited my response to 500 words.

I watched for a moment as the pair of wolves began preparing the long-broken grandfather clock for transport.  Through the glass of the door, I saw the jaguar who’d hired them leaning against the side of an expensive-looking car.

He was a tall businessman with sunglasses and a tailored suit that was probably worth what a month’s worth of my salary.

He waited arms crossed over his broad chest. His expression told me he wasn’t coming inside. I stifled the sigh and, after checking that the movers were set, pushed through the heavy door and into the steamy summer heat.

“Mr. Andrews?”  I said holding out my hand. He’d insisted on the “mister” since the first email, but I put up with it because I needed the money.

 “Afternoon,” he said with about as much sincerity as a lawyer on his third appeal. “I trust everything’s in order.”

That wasn’t a question, but I took it as one anyway. “Yeah, those guys have everything under control.”

“Good.” He said. “I suppose you want your money now?”

I shrugged. “That was the plan, wasn’t it?”

The jaguar leaned back against his car. “It was. My secretary is running late.”

I’d expected this to be a simple transaction. The movers were an unexpected but thankful addition, but the secretary was strange. I chalked it up to a rich people thing.

“Don’t suppose I could interest you in coming in for a drink while we wait?”

He looked at me.

“Yeah… didn’t think so.”

The secretary arrived just as the movers were bringing the clock out of the house. That was when I heard the cacophonous crash.

My stomach plummeted. I knew what I would see when I turned, but I still hoped I wouldn’t. The movers had somehow dropped the clock. The century-old wood had shattered into splinters, and mechanical parts were scattered around my driveway like shrapnel after an explosion.

The jaguar  reacted quickly and charged towards his movers, “You incompetent…” he trailed off as he noticed what else had spilled out of the clock: a small canvas bag stuffed with several small, rectangular objects. Boxes, I thought, but that changed when the jaguar opened the bag. His eyes widened.

“Looks like this is for you,” he said as I stepped closer. He handed the bag up to me.

I truly had no idea what I’d find when I looked inside, but as soon as I realized what it was, my I thought my jaw would drop.

A neatly folded yellowed piece of paper was inside. I opened it.

Dear Jason,

I know you probably weren’t expecting much from me, but I decided to hide a little extra cash away over the years and thought the best chance of you getting it would be if I left it here. I sure you can find a better use for it than me. Hope it didn’t take you long to find.



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