Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: DULL (05/12/17)
- TITLE: You Never Know
By Karen Dick
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My cousin Bradley, who sat to my right, cleared his throat.
“Mr. Watterbrig, will you be telling me…I mean us, why we’re here?” He leaned forward and tapped the desk with his fingers.
“Yes Mr. Cartwright. First I need to be sure everything is in order.” He pulled a stack of documents out of a folder, glanced at them, and then examined us.
“Thank you for coming Ms. Farley and Mr. Cartwright. I believe you are cousins, and grandchildren of the late Mr. Harry Cartwright?”
I nodded as I pushed my bangs off of my forehead.
Bradley said loudly, “that’s right.”
I took a deep breath and focused on the attorney.
“I am here to inform you of your grandfather’s instructions pertaining to his Will. He was very specific in what each of you would inherit, and asked that you would respect his requests.” The attorney stared at me, and then looked pointedly at my cousin.
“Is that understood?”
“What do I get?” Bradley leaned in.
I squeezed my hands together and rolled my eyes.
Mr. Watterbrig cleared his throat and looked at Bradley. “You will be receiving your grandfather’s classic Jaguar automobile.”
I turned slightly in my chair and peered at Bradley. His mouth hung open.
“That’s it? Just his car?” He slumped back in his chair.
“Mr. Cartwright, I am merely here as your grandfather’s attorney to inform you of his wishes. I cannot alter the Will in any manner. Is that clear?”
Bradley shook his head and looked down.
I turned my head away. That car is worth thousands of dollars.
I straightened in my chair and locked eyes with the attorney.
“Your grandfather requested that I give you this box.” He slid a small wooden box across his desk until it was directly in front of me.
I stared at it. “Should I open it?” I asked quietly.
“If you so desire.”
I leaned forward and carefully lifted the lid. Inside was a dull, gray rock. I looked up at the attorney.
“You will notice that there is an envelope in the box as well. You are to take the box to the address enclosed.”
“Will they tell her what river to throw the rock in?” Bradley laughed.
Mr. Watterbrig glanced at each of us and then stood. “Thank you for coming. Mr. Cartwright, you will be contacted with the details on the exchange of the car.”
Bradley and I stood and made our way toward the office door. With the wooden box held under my arm, I followed him out. We stopped and faced each other.
“Guess I’ll be saying good-bye Megan. Have fun with the rock.” He turned, walked down the hallway, and called over his shoulder, “a rock. At least I got something useful.”
As Bradley disappeared, my chin quivered and a tear slid down my cheek. Grandpa, I thought you loved me.
I placed the box on a nearby table, removed the envelope, and read a handwritten note from Grandpa.
My dearest Meg,
You are probably wondering why I would leave you a gift such as this. Remember when we used to talk about a person’s real beauty?
I love you,
A bell sounded as I walked through the entrance of the old building. The room smelled of must, and layers of dust lined every surface. I stepped up to a glass counter, and placed my inheritance on it as an elderly man appeared out of a back room.
“Hello, what can I do for you?” He smiled.
“My grandfather gave me this box and the contents. He also left me instructions to bring it here.” I lifted the lid, and the man picked up the rock.
“Ah yes, you must be Harry’s granddaughter.”
“Yes.” I smiled.
“This, young lady is a very valuable gem. Once and the dull hard surface is removed, and it is polished and refined, it will cast a beautiful glow.”
My eyes widened. “How much is it worth?”
He chuckled and winked. “You could probably quit your job.”
As the gemologist took the rock in the back to polish it, I held Grandpa’s note close to my heart.
Oh yes Grandpa, now I remember.
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