Thursday June 11th, 2015

The exercise:

Write about: the disappearance.

I've actually used this prompt twice before, but it's been over four years since the last time so I felt it was fair game to bring it around again.

This morning I finished tilling the remainder of our paths in the garden, which is a pretty great feeling (other than the feeling of my hand cramping up if I lift anything heavy - I barely got through the dishes tonight thanks to our cast iron pan). Then I did some hand weeding around our pepper plants, onions, and leeks.

It's almost like we're on top of things out there.

The 'no picking strawberries' thing suffered a close call though. While I was working Kat and Max were showing Rebecca around the farm. I was having a water break when Max made a break for the raspberry canes. I kept an eye on him from a distance and he came back out pretty quickly... and then headed for the strawberries.

"Where you going?" I asked.

"I'm going to pick strawberries and then eat them," he replied. "You want to pick some strawberries with me?"

I was strong and said no. He didn't care. He was off to eat strawberries.

I actually had other things I wanted to mention as well but this is getting long enough. I do need to use space for one last thing before I get to the prompt though: happy birthday Dad!


"I know I left them around here somewhere," Gary's father muttered as he passed through the living room for the ninth (or was it tenth?) time.

"I'm sure you did, Dad." Gary sipped from his glass as he watched his old man shuffle by.

"Help me find them, then!"

"That wouldn't do you any good," Gary said, giving his now empty glass a shake and a stern look. "If you rely on me finding things your brain will go to mush even faster."

"Well we're not getting out of here until I find my keys!" The shout came from down the hall somewhere - likely the kitchen.

"I know, Dad." Gary reached for the bottle of expensive whiskey and poured himself another drink. As he did so a soft jingle could be heard in his jacket pocket. "Trust me, I know."


Greg said...

Cast iron pans are great! Though I guess if your hands are cramping they're a lot less great when you're trying to wash up. It sounds like you had a pretty busy and successful day though, and I have to say, I'm impressed that Max took himself off to pick and eat strawberries – that has to be so much better than asking for sweets or a chocolate bar! Now, if only you could grow a donut tree... :)
Gary seems like an interesting son for someone to have. I think we may have to see the other side of this story now!

The disappearance
Gary's dad let his eyes wander over the keyhooks on the kitchen wall without focusing on them, and then let them drift away towards the tea-caddy and the coffee jar stood tidily next to the kettle. As he'd expected, his car keys were missing, and the kettle certainly hadn't been turned on since Gary had arrived.
He didn't exactly mind that his son preferred to drink whiskey here than buy his own, though Gary was thirty-five now and really ought to be able to sort himself out. Even after his divorce from Susan (here his dad allowed himself a wry smile; he'd recognized Shanghai Suzie straight off, though she'd not remembered him till three months after the wedding) he was still earning a comfortable salary and could afford to buy his own. No, what annoyed Gary's dad was that he was pretty certain that his son was trying to trick him into believing he was going senile.
Gary's dad shuffled back into the living room. Normally he strode, but he was enjoying the play-acting. "Help me find them, then" he said to Gary, wondering if he could get away with "What was I looking for again?"
"That wouldn't do you any good," said Gary. The smell of whiskey on his breath was strong, his eyes were slightly glazed already and he was slurring his words. He shook the glass as though hoping it would refill itself. "If you rely on me finding things, your brain will go to mush even faster!"
Even faster. Right. Gary's dad still did the cryptic crossword, the one Gary called 'complicated' in under seven minutes in the morning. Before coffee. He wandered out to the kitchen, waited a minute and then shouted, "Well we're not getting out of here till I find my keys!"
He sat down at the kitchen table. He reckoned it would be another 20 minutes or so before the valerian powder he'd added to the whiskey put Gary to sleep. Then they were going to go for a ride, Gary's dad was going to gently crash the car and then put Gary in the driver's seat. After that he was leaving the country; the house was already sold and a removals' firm would pack up the contents and ship them. Gary would wake up and wonder what has happened, while his dad just quietly disappeared.
He smiled. Shanghai Suzie was waiting for him in Panama, and he was sure it was going to be a wild ride.

Marc said...

Greg - yes, his treats are really quite healthy. Everything, however, in moderation, as they say...

Ah, so glad you went in this direction. Gary's old man is a much slicker character than I had given him credit for! And yes, I imagine that will be one wild ride indeed :)