If you’re not familiar with Seth and Sara, read here.
“Hey Seth, I’m going to run down the street for some food. The Thai place on the corner is pretty good,” Jack said, dusting his hands on his dark washed Diesels.
“Thanks for helping me unpack,” Seth replied. The loft space Jack rented was amazing; he felt more like an art dealer just thinking that this was going to be home.
He heard the creaking of the freight elevator as he set the last box from his South End apartment down on a curious stool. It was sturdy, three-legged like a milking stool, but the wood grain, the natural twist and bend of the lines made it seem like a piece from a fairy-tale, something that grew up out of the forest floor.
He’d have to ask Jack who the artist was. And if he had representation.
He opened the box and immediately wished he hadn’t. Sara’s Burberry scarf, still smelling like Coco, lying there, haphazardly tossed in among her books, her worn boiled wool slippers, the things she left with him that last time she’d walked out the door.
The scarf she’d been wearing looped around her neck the morning their story began to end.
“By the time we stop at Peet’s for coffee, it’ll be eight,” he’d muttered to himself, taking the stairs up to the second floor of Sara’s father’s house two at a time. “If we get to Quebec by dinner, it’ll be a fucking miracle.”
At least four times in the ten minutes before she’d locked the back door, Sara had forgotten something she had to have.
He’d heard a car door slam as he entered the unused bedroom Sara had converted into a study.
He’d yanked open the center drawer and rummaged through receipts, pens, hair pins, Werther’s caramels, highlighters–the detritus of Sara’s academic career.
“Seth?” she called out from the kitchen. He could imagine her standing indignantly on the mexican tile floor, reflected morning sunlight bouncing off the rarely used Viking onto the unruly curls that escaped the messy bun she deemed her “traveling hair.”
No time for daydreams, he’d thought, and slammed the door shut. He’d hauled open the file drawer to the right.
“Seth! I said I’d get the damn passport!”
Her feet pounded on the stairs.
The folder was marked “Sara” which seemed a logical place to find her passport, and so he’d flicked it open with two fingers.
“Seth,” she’d whispered, a hand on his shoulder. His shoulder which suddenly seemed so far from his hand. Blood rushed behind his eyes, her voice swam in and out of earshot.
“You weren’t meant to see that.”
She took the sheet of paper from his hands and held it between them.
He couldn’t look at her, he could only see the inverse images, stark in their grayscale. The medical coding, the neurology jargon, meaningless. Only the shocking white mass, a clear, swollen kidney bean among the gray wrinkles, and her name in boldface.
EVANS SARA CABOT
“Seth,” she’d said, a little loudly, a little meanly.
“We have a seven hour drive to talk about this.”
He’d stood there, incapable of motion, until she’d bent suddenly, slipped the paper into her desk drawer, and slammed it, startling him. She brandished her passport in her right hand.
“You promised me dinner in an ice restaurant for my birthday,” she’d said, matter-of-factly.
She’d tugged at the ends of her scarf, pulled a wayward curl away from her lip, and walked out the door of her study. Her voice floated back to him.
“And as you’ve seen, I might not have another one, so let’s get going.”
Write a piece – 600 word limit – about finding a forgotten item of clothing in the back of a drawer or closet. Let us know how the item was found, what it is, and why it’s so meaningful to you or your character.
So, it’s a box, not a closet, but there is something discovered in a drawer.