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His Treasure

January 24, 2019

From Peregrine Arc comes this fun writing prompt/contest.

I want you to imagine you come across a treasure chest. The setting and circumstances are yours to invent. But you need to tell the reader what’s inside…eventually. Build up a little intensity; spice it with anticipation or season with mystery. Do your thing and we’ll read it. We’re looking forward to what the treasure chest reveals for you.

1. Keep it PG. Pretend your great aunt Gertrude would read it and take back your Christmas gifts if she smelled even the faintest whiff of impropriety.

2. No word limit this week. Just please don’t try to out write Tolstoy. I do need to sleep and eat.

3. You can do descriptives, a story, whatever your imagination comes up with. Narratives might work best here but let your imagination be your guide.

4. Keep it clean. Remember Aunt Gertrude. Humor is optional but nice.

5. Repost on your blog to increase the fun! This is optional, but the more the merrier. I welcome the pingbacks.

You have until Friday, January 25th (11:59 pm, US EST) to make your post. Author reserves the right to approve and disapprove comments at her own discretion. I look forward to reading your adventures.

Sounds like fun, no? If you agree go HERE and play along. Here’s my treasure chest –

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His Treasure

They tell him he watches the clock too much. ‘They’ being his teachers and other people in the school; people he doesn’t know and who carry leather-covered notebooks with the words “Brighton County Elementary School” stamped in gold lettering across the front.

These people he doesn’t know, the ones with the leather-covered notebooks, they ask him questions and they write down his answers in their notebooks. He’s learned to keep his answers short and to nod and agree with the things they say because it’s easier that way. He also learned that if he tells them why he doesn’t pay attention in the classroom, and why he watches the clock, they just ask him more questions so he keeps his thoughts, his treasured secrets, tucked away inside.

When he’s done answering their questions they close their leather-covered notebooks, stand up and smile politely at him and leave. They never say “thank you” so even though they smile, he knows they’re not really polite.

Randy always says thank you. It’s what his mom taught him to do.

It’s not that Randy doesn’t like school, he’s just bored in the classroom. He’s not athletic so he’s not involved in any sports and he doesn’t make friends easily so he’s lonely. Plus he’s sitting in math class and math class and Mr. Richard, he thinks: yuck.

And he doesn’t always watch the clock, he also watches Lisa Beldorn.

Lisa has brown hair that hangs to just below her shoulders. More often than not she pulls it back into a pony tail and ties it with a colored ribbon and Randy plays a game where he tries to guess what color the ribbon will be that day. Sometimes he’s right and sometimes he’s wrong but it doesn’t bother him being wrong because Lisa, he thinks, is pretty regardless of the color of the bow she’s wearing, and he gets to look at her whether he’s right with the ribbon guessing game or wrong with the ribbon guessing game so he wins either way. He thinks about telling her she’s pretty and decides that one day he’ll do just that, but that for the time being he’ll keep that thought as another tucked-away little treasure.

He watches the clock tick to noon and when the school bell rings to signal lunchtime Randy joins the other students walking to the cafeteria. Walking down the hall with the other students he stays close to the wall because he’s uncomfortable in the large crowd. His right thumb reaches across his palm to nervously spin the lucky ring on his middle finger and he holds his brown paper lunch bag in his left hand.

He relaxes when he enters the open space large lunchroom. He gives the milk lady his ticket and grabs a half-pint milk carton and he walks over to sit at his usual spot at his usual table near the back exit and next to the window that overlooks the train tracks. He opens his lunch bag and pulls out a wax paper-wrapped peanut butter sandwich and a small bag of potato chips to reveal the gold hidden at the bottom of his paper treasure chest. He lifts the small sheet of paper out, unfolds it and leans back in his seat and reads the message:

Hi sweetie,

I hope you’re having a good day at school
and I’ll see you when you get home.
Enjoy your lunch.

I love you,
Mom

= = = =

(This song isn’t autobiographical in any way, it’s just a good song by a great songwriter)

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. January 24, 2019 10:48 am

    Oh, my. This is beautiful. And, it’s literally just like two of my boys and the way they think and act.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. January 24, 2019 1:27 pm

    Seconding Chelsea here. Very beautiful and strong writing. It reminded me a little of the young reader novel Maniac Magee, but I haven’t read that novel in a long time so I can’t be totally sure it’s an adequate comparison.

    Thank you so much for participating. I hope you consider writing more on this. You have some gold here that could turn into a book? 😊

    Like

  3. January 25, 2019 10:48 am

    Such a sweet story…Randy sounds like a kid well worth working for to earn his trust.!

    Like

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