Do you have plans for celebrating the glorious 4th? Picnics? Get-togethers? Fireworks? Hot dogs and watermelon? Anything? Last evening we attended a picnic out at a beautiful place in the country. There was patriotic music, hot dogs, hamburgers, watermelon, and lovely weather. :) Tomorrow there is another "party" a family at church is hosting. I'm sure it will be fun. :)
Life has been busy. I'm still working on trying to complete many of my projects so I can get back into writing. I'm having some trouble thinking of what to write now. Anyone have any short story ideas? I tried to think of a patriotic story I could write and post, but I think the part of my brain that comes up with all these stories is on vacation because I couldn't think of anything!
I thought of giving you the next part of the Graham Quartet today, but wasn't sure anyone was really interested in it right now. (Maybe everyone was too busy to read the last post.) So I decided to give you another story. I just wrote this story on the spur of the moment. I couldn't think of what to write about, but I needed to write something, so I started. And this is the story that came from it. :) Enjoy!
Choices for Max
Max threw down his bat in frustration. “If you are going to pitch, Marcia, that try to throw the ball over here and not ten feet away!”
“But I’m afraid I will hit you,” wailed nine-year-old Marcia, rubbing at her eyes with a dirty fist.
“I can get out of the way,” Max promised, picking up his bat once more and tapping it on the piece of cardboard he was using as home-plate. “Try a few more throws.”
The next throw was closer than anything yet, and Max smiled as he tossed the ball back to his sister. “That’s better. Try a little closer next time.” Holding his bat, Max prepared to swing if the next ball came anywhere close to his bat. His body, small for eleven years, tensed. If only Marcia would make one good throw before they had to go in for supper; he wanted to feel the bat hit even a piece of the ball.
The throw came and Max ducked, swinging his bat wildly as the ball headed right towards him!
Max, his eyes tightly closed, heard the sound and felt his bat connect with something. Had he really hit the ball? Venturing a peek, he saw his sister staring open mouthed as her head moved and her eyes remained glued to something which arched overhead and out towards the far end of the park. Surely it wasn’t his ball, was it? Standing up, he watched the object begin to fall from obit. It was so far out! He could have made a home-run with that hit.
Suddenly he started to run, dropping his bat as he passed his startled sister.
“Max!” Marcia called, stooping to pick up the bat before running after her brother. “Wait!”
Max didn’t so much as bother to answer or even look over his shoulder. His eyes were on his ball. “No!” he moaned to himself. “Not the creek!”
Putting forth another bust of energy, Max reached the wide creek which ran through the edge of the city park. Perhaps his ball wasn’t too far out. He might be able to get it if he just rolled his pants up a little. Upon reaching the bank of the creek, Max, panting from his run, searched the creek bed with his eyes. The ball was nowhere to be seen close to shore.
Rolling up his pant legs, Max quickly stepped into the water. The coolness was refreshing on the warm early summer afternoon. Resolutely he started out towards the middle of the stream where he was sure his ball had landed.
“Max!” Marcia called. “Your clothes!”
It was too late. Only then did Max remember that he had promised his aunt he would try to stay clean. “But I can’t lose my ball,” he muttered, wondering just how deep he would have to go. “I needn’t have rolled up my pants,” he thought, as the water reached and then passed his knees.
Deeper and still deeper he waded, his eyes trying to see through the murky water for any sign of his lost baseball. Suddenly he stopped. What had his foot just felt? Carefully feeling it, he could tell it was a round object. Was it–Yes, it was his ball, he was sure of it.
“I found it, Marcia!” he shouted to his sister.
“Then hurry up and get it,” Marcia called back.
Max looked down at the ball by his feet. There was no way he could get it up without getting his shirt wet. Well, there was no hope for it. “I’m already wet,” he sighed. As he reached down, something happened. He never was quite sure if his feet slipped or if he just lost his balance. Whichever way it happened brought the same results. With flailing arms and a startled cry, Max felt the cold waters rushing over his body, into his eyes and ears and then over his head. The next minute he was sitting on the bottom of the creek with only his head above the water as he gasped and choked, trying to shake the water from his eyes.
“Max!” there was panic in his sister’s voice.
“I . . . I’m all right, Marsh,” he tried to laugh. “I . . . I have my ball.” His hand had closed over the sought for object and he raised it over his head.
“Then get out of that water!” pleaded his younger sister, almost in tears. “You’ll catch your death just sitting there!”
Struggling to his feet, Max staggered to the shore, climbed up the bank, and collapsed onto the grass. He couldn’t help giving a little laugh at his sister as she stood there before him, her small hands planted on her hips, frowning at him.
“I don’t know what Aunt Kate is going to say to you,” she began. “You promised her you would keep clean.”
“I said I would try to keep clean,” Max corrected quickly. “And I did try. How was I supposed to know my ball would go so far or that I was going to fall into the water?” He stood up. “Come on, Marcia, let’s get home. I’m hungry, and I imagine supper must be about ready.”
Together the brother and sister started on their homeward way. Max looked a sorry sight with water dripping from every fiber of his clothes and his blond hair plastered down on his head.
“Let’s go the back way,” he suggested, after noticing the stares they were receiving on the busy sidewalks of the city.
Marcia agreed, for she hated to be stared at. She had always been rather shy, and since they had come to live with their Aunt Kate in the city after their parents had died, she had grown even quieter around strangers.
At last the brother and sister reached the backyard of their Aunt Kate’s house. Max had hoped he would be able to slip in and change clothes before his aunt saw him, but she was in the kitchen when they stepped through the back door.
What do you think will happen next?
Will you be back for Part 2?
Have a wonderful Independence Day!