Tag: Found

FOUND: Found Treasure By G. Ackman

Word: FOUND
Word Count 500

Found Treasure
by G. Ackman
Hunched over on the swing, Hannah’s hand clenched a dirt-encrusted ring she had found while digging in the garden. The harsh words she had flung at Andrew replayed in her mind. “You just don’t care” she had accused. “Sometimes I hate you” as he stormed out the door, flinging a “And you’re just selfish” back at her, causing the door to jump in its frame and a vase to shatter on the floor. For the past week they had been civilly cool towards each other. He had lost his wedding ring while on a fishing trip, and Hannah had been furious at his not valuing their marriage.
Hannah vowed to return this ring to its rightful finger. Thankful that she didn’t live back when a person had to look through pages of tax records, Hannah’s internet search located the previous two owners of the property. That took it back more than sixty years. The first name was a bust. They only lived there two years and the frazzle-haired woman with a toddler on one hip and another at her feet responded harshly that she was “divorced and glad of it.” That left the other owners – Harold and Betty Vandament. It took a few tries and some awkward phone calls to locate Betty in a nursing home forty miles away. Hannah went to visit on her next day off, expecting awful smells, hunched over old ladies in wheelchairs, and harried, uncaring staff. Instead Hannah saw a clean, well-lit room with an antiseptic, but not unpleasant smell. Smiling staff looked the elderly patients right in the eye and talked to them gently. One guided her to Betty’s door. At Hannah’s knock, a frail voice wavered “come in.” Hannah introduced herself as the new owner of the Bridgeport house, and was rewarded with a genuine smile. Without any explanation, Hannah opened her hand and displayed the ring, now clean and shiny. Betty’s shaky hands reached for it. “Wherever did you find that?”
“In the garden.”
“Heavens to betsy, I never figured on seeing this again.”
Hannah felt pride in restoring a lost treasure. “Oh, honey, it didn’t bother me overmuch when I lost it.”
“It didn’t? – but it was your wedding ring.”
“I lost Harold eight years ago now.”
“Oh, I’m sorry. Is the ring a painful reminder?”
Betty chuckled. “No, it isn’t that. We had a good marriage. Oh, there were days I couldn’t stand the sight of him and for a dollar, would have planted him in that garden. But then there were days…..” As her mind visited the past, the wrinkles fell from her face and the shakiness from her hands. She was a young bride again. She reached over and closed Hannah’s hand around the ring. “You keep it.”
“Oh, I couldn’t – it’s your wedding ring.”
“No, honey, it’s a piece of jewelry. My marriage is in my heart. Always was. Still is.
Losing that ring or my husband doesn’t change that.”
Hannah went home and hugged Andrew close.

FOUND: The Found Child By Maggie Robertson

Week 4: Found
Word Count: 498
The Found Child
By Maggie Robertson
The morning woke up to a rainbow-sherbet sunrise; striking beauty delivered with a hint of interesting times ahead. The youth-challenged couple strolled through their garden to forage for breakfast, and there he was, nestled between the pole beans and pumpkin vines, his forest-green swaddling blending in with the vibrant summer-solstice hue of the garden.
The child looked like he had dropped from the sky. No, wait. He looked like he had come straight from the Earth, pushed up from the ground like a newly sprouting seed; so vulnerable, yet so strong. There were no signs of an intruder; no tracks or trampled plants, no indications of comings or goings. They never did find out where he came from or how he got there.
She wanted to name the child after a garden plant, maybe Basil, or Heliotrope, or Spud. The Old Man rejected those notions.
“We’ll call him Kyle,” he declared.
Like the plants that surrounded him that morning in the garden, Kyle grew quickly. With both the grounding and the fortitude of a tree, he was his own person right from his very beginning.
As a toddler, he was solid, unbreakable. He seemed to take the lumps and bumps as all a part of life, determined to learn how to get his body to do what he wanted it to do. His early years were spent in great delight exploring the fields and woods, spending most of his time outdoors. He survived school well enough, but when he arrived home at the end of the day, he’d pitch his books through the door and head to the hills.
In adolescence he was not unpopular, but his close friends were a select few. He had a way of bringing calm and a sense of safety to those around him, as if he was the Earth itself. As he grew into adulthood, splendid chaos was frequently left in his wake as he challenged conventions in ways that were both confounding and ultimately successful. He moved through life like an icebreaker, opening the sea for those following.
He met Katherine on a day much like the one on which he was Found. The earliest morning sun painted hues of reds, yellows, and oranges across the eastern sky. Kyle wandered into the local diner for a rare treat of breakfast cooked and served by someone else.
She walked through the door, dusty and worn, with that slightly crazed look in her eyes of someone who has been on the move for too may hours. The diner was otherwise empty; she sat down right across the table from him.
“Thanks for breakfast.” She said.
“Same to you.” He replied.
When she woke up in his spare room a day and a half later, her essence had already permeated into the far reaches of the home. Like Kyle, there was never an explanation of where she had come from, only a knowledge that she had arrived just where she was supposed to be.

FOUND: Found By B.A. Sarvey

Week 4 Word: Found
Word Count 498
Found
by B.A. Sarvey

“They found me,” Rosie gasped. “Gol-darn-it!” All that effort wasted.
Bah! Broken tail light my foot, she thought. They knew. That’s why he pulled her over. And now he was swaggering back to his cruiser with her license. Well, she wasn’t going to wait for what came next. Drat. Took some conniving to get that one. Rosalind James, this one said. Roseanne Dean was the last one. Rosemary John. Rosamunde Jacobs—her favorite. Rose Marie Bruce. “That by which we call a rose, by any other name ….” She muttered.
How many of her sixty-eight years on this earth had been spent evading “them”, peering between the blinds, seldom going out, no trackable routines, moving frequently—furnished apartments only. No large purchases—certainly not a car. This one wasn’t hers. How long would it take the cop to figure that out? Cash paid for everything. No checks or credit cards. No sir-ree. No paper trails. Nothing personal that could be traced back to her. Periodic identity changes. She knew her way around the system. Knew how to obtain documents, too. Gol-darn-it! Well. She’d have to jump through some hoops, but she could get another license. Came in handy as identification. You never knew. Might not otherwise bother with one.
Counting to ten, Rosie gently shifted into “drive” and tapped the gas. By the time the trooper heard gravel crunching, Rosie had hit the roadway, and floored it. He scrambled, tripped. Rosie glanced in her rear view and smirked. He’d never catch her, she thought.
“Hold onto your hat, George!” Rosie whooped.
Wasn’t the first time she’d had to scamper, staying one step ahead of them. What tipped them off? Musta been careless. Can’t be careless. “What’s that George?” The roaring engine filled her head and she missed his comment.
“You can’t afford mistakes,” George repeated, softly, the words now buzzing through her brain.
Rose swatted at the air beside her ear. Like that was going to get rid of George! Good one, Rosie, she thought. Can’t outrun him. Not like that wet-behind-the-ears trooper she’d left in the dust. When she’d first gone on the lam, she’d thought to get away from George. But he stayed with her no matter what she did. Came uninvited in the first place and refused to leave. Oh well. Such was the burden of notoriety. You had these hangers-on.
Now George always ran the show. Whispered in her head. Told her where to go, how long to stay. Reminded her they were watching.
George leaned in close from the empty passenger seat. “Watch the curve ahead, Rosie.”
“Can’t get caught,” she shot back. “Not getting caught.”
Hundred twenty. She felt like a race car driver. Hundred twenty-eight. She thought the Camaro would shake apart. It left the roadway, soared into the brush. She never saw the tree coming. Heard nothing but George’s whisper in her ear. “You did it, Rosie.”
“They won’t get me,” she vowed.
Nothing left behind.
Not even skid marks.

FOUND: Labyrinth Planet By Michael S. Jones

Week 4 Word: FOUND
Word Count 495
Labyrinth Planet
By Michael S. Jones
Daedalus
Minos Dispatch Nine
1.1.2221 Earth Calendar

You have never experienced dark. You only think you have.
I broke my own rule about solo explorations and then broke my light. Feeling for it I got turned around. I later learned that for two days and nights I had been blundering inward. Physically I only suffered contusions, back spasms and a sprained ankle.
Psychologically I segued from claustrophobia to terror and then despair.. The image of my perfectly preserved bones being discovered by my own team horrified me. My fear had become the minotaur lurking in the twisting passages.
Then, tracing the roof to avoid head injury I felt unyielding cold rock change to something slick. At my touch the corridor began to phosphoresce yellow at a few candlepower; blinding to light-starved eyes. Tapping the slick ceiling anywhere brightened the light by degrees.
I slid my finger forward and the ceiling began to pulse in waves in the same direction that I “pointed.” Colors changed from sun yellow to emerald green and then to sapphire. I leaned against a wall and stared dumbfounded, watching waves of color bend through a division entrance and beyond, leading me… where? This was not a mechanical chase light. It was alive like a pulsing cuttlefish.
And then I heard Ginny’s voice calling from behind: my own Areadne.
We have no idea why ceilings closer to the outer entrances are “dead.” Clearly the
Theseus People moved from stone age into this bio-technological age, yet they still carved tunnels using the old ways. Again, was this a religious discipline?
We have seen no remnant of mechanisms. They appear to have skipped a machine age entirely.
We’re sending a detailed catalogue of what we have found thus far. But cavern after cavern has revealed Thesean creations. Or should I say creatures?
They range from bio-computers to living machines to exquisite art.

Their esthetic was wonderful!
There is a “cave painting” of an outsized and stylized centilizard. Its legs move in undulating colors, never repeating. There are other moving animal portraits. Are they extinct or merely not seen by us so-far?
They apparently did not paint themselves.
One cave is a perfect dome with low seating at the center. (Yes, that confirms my notion that they were short-statured.) Music and lights wait for the last person seated. Infinite colors illuminate ceiling and floor while music courses from a hundred directions in turn.
Our relationship with Center is now different.
We will continue to share technology as long as you provide supplies.
Do not send manned space benders.
Frankie has tamed a centilizard. They purr! Were they they pets of the Theseus People too?
Frankie and Paige hold hands constantly and Ginny thinks that Paige is pregnant.
Ginny is a couple of months along. We don’t have the means to discover the gender of our child, nor do we wish to.
Happy New Year.

Bill Sloan
Mayor Daedalus Village

P.S. Don’t forget the peanut butter and jelly.

FOUND: Finding Sight By Claire Robertson

Week 4 Word: FOUND
Word Count 350

Finding Sight
By Claire Robertson

The panther once again leaped at Minaya, and this time, Magnus couldn’t intercept. The panther hit her, a furry black torpedo, knocking her to the floor. She wrestled with it, finally stabbing it with the knife she kept in her sneaker for occasions like this. She glanced at Magnus, who was fighting a baboon. They went through several creatures before one could really hurt them. The last creature was the panther, who had reformed many times. This was its 9th life. It had evolved every time, bigger, sometimes growing extra limbs in the process. Now it was the size of an elephant with 8 legs, 2 tails, 6 wings, and 7 heads. It pounced, screaming and hissing at the twins. “Why did you think I was dead?” asked Magnus, darting out of the panther’s way. “You’re asking this NOW!” There may not be a later, so now is good.” “You’re right” said Minaya exaggeratingly slowly “Let’s think. Maybe because the last time I saw you, you were half conscious with a knife in your side!” “You think a little scratch like that could have killed me?” Minaya raised an eyebrow, a hard thing to do when you’re running from a mutant panther. “Okay, it was a big scratch.” Magnus said defensively “No need to get technical!” The panther scratched Minaya across the face, and she fell to the floor. Magnus, thinking of nothing else to do, threw the light at the panther, which dissolved into darkness. The panther hit her in the eyes, thought Magnus. She’ll live, but she’ll never see again. He was surprised to see a blue haze forming around the girl. A few minutes later, the magical haze around the girl disappeared, and she opened her eyes. But they were different. Still slit pupiled, they were blue, the exact same color as her glasses had been. “You-how-but-that’s-no one-you can’t do that!” he finished lamely. “I have always had a gift with healing. Deal with it. Now let’s get out of here!” They headed to a tunnel on the other side of the chamber, heading to the light.

FOUND: Animal Planet By Nan Ressue

Week 4 Word: FOUND
Word Count 500+
Nan Ressue
ANIMAL PLANET
When we found our vacant and waiting country house, I hardly noticed what was across the road. It was another world.
Mary and her two adult children operated the family farm directly across the highway from our house where animals were used for diversion and child substitutes. Her son collected dogs and the daughter favored workhorses. There was an Afghan hound who looked like a blond with a permanent and a poodle who pestered the bigger dogs to grab his tail and run him around in big circles, swinging out like an amusement park ride.. The dog loved it. The son was a Viet Nam veteran who valued his guns and took his three Black and Tan hounds on frequent hunting expeditions. The maximum dog count was eleven and they all lived in the house.
My dear, old- time farmer father- in -law liked to stand at our front windows and watch the daughter’s beautiful blond Belgian workhorses in their pasture. “Don’t they ever do any work?” he asked me during one visit.
“Well”. I replied, “sometimes they walk around the pasture or play tag. And then, I’ve also seen them take naps”
What a waste,” he snorted. “They could at least drag a log around the field.”
What he didn’t know was that the work horses preferred to live in our yard. Since one of them was an escape artist, they were often grazing in our front yard. Walking up the driveway, and, more than once, standing on the front porch .which was fortunately constructed out of stone slabs
One summer day when I was taking my turn watching the horses out the front windows, I could see that that the daughter must have decided it was time for the workhorses to work and was planning to break a younger horse to harness. The three year old was teamed up with a twenty five year old, which was supposed to offer some control to the owner who was perched on the box of a lightweight wagon, holding the lines with an iron grip. An additional lead rope was on the youngster, held by the long-suffering brother. The nervous younger horse tossed his head frequently, finally ripping the lead rope out of the brother’s hands and snapping the animal on the rump. Watch out everybody! You can guess where they headed. Coming at a gallop, they ran up our driveway, through the only hole in the hedge, across the backfield, made a U-turn and came down the opposite side of the yard. The sister was bouncing high on the seat, gripping the lines with all her might while the brother ran behind, yelling “Jump! Jump!” Fortunately she didn’t. The team miscalculated a turn and ran themselves into a right angle corner of the barn, the only way they would ever be stopped. I was very grateful that my children were in the house.
Among the benefits of living across from a farm were wheelbarrows full of manure for the garden. “I brought youse that load of shit I promised”, called our neighbor on one springtime evening, parking it on the sidewalk in front of the door, just ten minutes before my daughter’s prom date was scheduled to arrive.
Her brother, the hero of the evening, made it disappear around the back of the house just as her date was pulling in the driveway,
What was that about the peace and quiet of the countryside?

FOUND: Confounded By Sharon Collins

Week 4 Word: FOUND
Word Count 317
Confounded
By Sharon Collins

The beekeeper’s boy bolted for the riverbank spurred on by the buzz of the emptying hive of angry honeybees. Scrambling through brambles, he drew in an enormous gulp of air and dove deep, as more than a dozen bees made good their stinging threat. Fighting the urge to resurface, Widrick the Beekeeper’s Boy, assessed his dilemma. Come up too soon and he’d add a few more searing spots of agony; stay down too long and he’d drown. Being not much of a choice, he surfaced just far enough to catch a breath and ducked under again. He was whiplash quick but not quick enough. Searing hot pain lanced from his eyebrow to his cheek.
“Zounds!” he cussed but luckily only the minnows and pollywogs could hear him. Beekeeper Toby could not abide a young’un cussing and would not allow it, no matter the level of pain a boy was in. An errant cuss could earn Widrick a supper-less night. And being not so recently orphaned, he remembered too many hungry midnights. Forcing himself to count to 10 ten times as that was the extent of his numbers, he swam underwater to the opposite bank and cautiously climbed out.
Shaking streaming copper strands from his eyes, he listened – no threatening buzz, just the safe, sweet sounds of summer. Droning cicadas and an harrumphing bullfrog serenaded him. He slumped back and began dabbing cool river mud onto the burning welts covering his face and arms. “Toby’ll think I’ve caught the pox, when he sees me,” he mused aloud, “Might make him forget that I busted up that comb and wasted the honey.”
“Not bloody likely!” Came the explosive reply, as an arm knotted with muscle reached over the rim of the bank and yanked the Beekeeper’s Boy up and to his dripping feet. Widrick momentarily considered pointing out that “bloody” was a cuss word, but bit his tongue instead.

FOUND: She Found What She Was Looking For By Janie D

Week 4 FOUND
Word Count 465

She Found What She Was Looking For
By Janie D

She was looking for something. Something, but what? This she did not know. Was it excitement and adventure that she had been lacking? Oh, how she wished that she knew. But, she did know that there was an emptiness in her that she could not explain. She was hoping that she would recognize the missing piece of her soul when she saw it.
She walked into a social establishment for her usual before-work drink, a diet soda, whatever they had on tap, because she was on her way to work on the graveyard shift at the local factory. It was the 13th day straight of 10-hour days and she was exhausted, partly because she hadn’t rested very well most of those days.
When she walked in the door there was an alluring presence that called to her. It was indescribable, almost electric and she felt it go into her innermost being, her core. What was it? Who was he? What was his name? What was it about him that drew her closer and closer, like the proverbial moth to a flame?
Little did she know that she should have turned and run away as fast as she could. But she couldn’t, she could not fight the enticingly magnetic pull of his presence. He bought her drink and pulled out a stool for her next to him. She was flattered that he sought her out particularly because she was dressed for a long night at the mill, leggings and man’s T-Shirt. Not at all what she would have thought would attract someone like him with his long gleaming brown hair, black jeans and leather fringed jacket.
The conversation was light and a little flirtatious and she couldn’t help but being drawn to him. The smile on his lips reached right up to his eyes that were twinkling with mischief. But here he was talking with her, flirting with her. When it was time for her to reluctantly depart his company, he asked her to take him home instead, and he would make her a midnight breakfast. Oh, how tempted she was and it took all her willpower to say to him, “You are cute but not $38.00 an hour cute.” You see, she was making double time at work that night. She was surprised at the boldness with which she had made such a statement. Where did that come from? Was it her voice that had said it? Yes, it was. He had brought out something in her, something like confidence and self-assurance that she did not know she had. You see, she somehow knew it was him. He who seemed to connect to her soul.
Little did she know how this chance encounter would alter her life forever.

FOUND: Found By Anne Nassar

Week 4 Word: FOUND
Word Count 435
Found
Anne Nassar
Going through her mother’s papers, Allie found a letter from a doctor’s office. It said that her mother was scheduled for a distal pancreatectomy.
Allie was stunned. Her mother had known she was dying.
Allie’s stepdad, Dave, was sitting in the kitchen. He had a pen in his hand, and he was supposed to be writing thank you notes to the people who had donated money to the cancer society in his wife’s name. But he was staring into space.
Did you know that mom had cancer? Allie asked him.
He shook his head.
She knew, Allie said.
She handed him the letter.
He asked, this…distal…is this a test or what?
It’s surgery. If she’d had it, she might be alive.
He was silent. Finally he said, We were in Maine that week. We went to the Lobster Festival. She acted normal the whole time.
He blinked rapidly, trying to keep the tears back.
Why would she keep it a secret? he asked Allie.
I don’t know, Allie said, she probably wanted to just enjoy the time she had left. You went on all those trips, all those places she always wanted to go.
When we were traveling, she seemed really happy, happier than she’d ever been, he said, looking to Allie for confirmation.
She was, Allie said, You made her happy.
Then how could she choose to leave me? Why didn’t she fight it?
I don’t know, Allie said, I just don’t know.
Dave covered his eyes with his hands. The tears were running down his cheeks.
Allie went to the bathroom and got a box of Kleenex for him. He pulled out a tissue and blew his nose, loudly.
She said, you know, my grandmother died of cancer. It took years. She suffered terribly. By the time she died, I couldn’t remember what she was like before she got sick. It had been months since she spoke. All she did was moan and cry. I remember mom saying that she wished she had the nerve to put a whole bunch of pills in grandma’s mouth. I think she just didn’t want that kind of death for herself.
Dave said, I would have understood.
Allie nodded and said, yeah, but if you knew, you would have been miserable and you wouldn’t have wanted to travel.
Dave said, I wish she would’ve left me a letter or something.
Allie said, me too.
Watching Dave fight to suppress his sobs, Allie decided to smuggle out the envelope full of old photographs that her mother had kept in her unmentionables drawer. The pictures were of Allie’s father.

FOUND: Found By JH Malin

Week 4 Word: FOUND
Word count 494

Found
JH Malin
I weaved my car around the concrete barriers as I entered Ft. Monmoth, NJ, Central Communications Command for the US Army. Its enormous brick arches under which I passed each day never ceased to make my innards quake just a little. I stopped at the Gate and surrendered my papers. The guard inspected them, then bid me “good day, ma’am.”
I drove to headquarters where I met the rest of my team. Gary was polished in his tailored suit and cuff links. Bob, always disheveled in a sport coat from the trunk of his car, thankfully sported khakis instead of his usual jeans. Our leader was (retired) Colonel Ron. This imposing 12-foot man with leathery skin, cigarette voice, two-word sentences, and gigantic hands was our leader. Just looking at him, you knew he’d have your back. I’ll always remember the day I met Ron. I had on my favorite espadrilles – tan ones with ribbon ties at the ankles, three-inch wedge heels, and just a few pearls and sequins on the toes. His hand swallowed mine. (I could hear my daddy yelling, “Firm handshake!”) Ron shot a quick recon glance up and down. Peering at me from the ceiling, he said, “Hmm. You’re gonna be different.” (I asked him once if he had his own weather patterns up there.) Thus began our friendship, which is still going strong today.
Our team did a final check of our presentations. We knew everyone who was expected to participate. Of course the only one that mattered was General Justice. (Sounds like an action figure doll, doesn’t it?) His Executive Officer met us in the lobby and led us to the General’s waiting room. We entered thick glass doors with Army decals adorning them, and sat in imposing leather chairs encircling the room. The tension was palpable. Ron sat across on the other side, empty chairs guarding his personal space. His right knee was bobbing frantically. His face divulged that he was rehearsing his speech. This won’t do.
I walked across the room and sat down next to him, receiving that sideways glare down his eagle nose. I sat demurely beside him, plotting, feet not touching the carpet. Looking into the next room, I saw paneled walls, and a massive oak desk. I leaned over and whispered, “Ron.” Nothing. My right elbow caught him in the ribs. “Ron,” I breathed with more urgency.
“What,” he snapped.
I snaked my right hand up by my chin, barely flexing my index finger. I pointed. “I found him. He’s right there.”
Ron scowled, “That’s his office.”
“I know… but it’s not working.”
“What the hell are you talking about?” he barked.
“That camouflage – it’s not working. I can still see him! Can’t you?” A pregnant silence filled the room.
This time I got the full head snap AND an eye roll. “Oh, for God’s sakes, Malin! I can’t take you anywhere!”
I saw just the slightest twitch of his lip. Mission accomplished.