Her Chicken Scratch / Short Stories

Timothy Rogers

“You know, if you going to keep eating like that Granddad, you’re not going to live very long.” I said.

“Boy, if you’re going to keep telling me that. You’re not going to live that long.” He replied, digging his hand deeper into his bucket of fried chicken. He pulled out a fairly long piece and started to eat it like one would eat a piece of corn except noisier.

“What were you like when you were my age?” I asked him, shifting uncomfortably in my very plush chair. I knew his answer would probably be along the lines of, ‘what age?’ or ‘I don’t know’ and if he didn’t answer with one of those he would get up and leave the room. Which made me wonder even harder what he was like when he was my age. Was he kind? Was he a bookworm? Did he enjoy sports? Did he like mathematics class? Was he… a good person? I asked myself these questions often, as I realized that I don’t really know him. I mean, sure, I come visit him every Thursday after school but he would just get me to help him around the house, and I guess I was his company of choice when it came to watching old black and white movies which I weren’t to fond of but I knew that it made him happy. I looked up noticing that he too, was shifting uncomfortably in his overly plush chair.

He let out a sigh and said, “Timothy, have you looked outside the window lately?”

I shook my ahead. My eyes were strained from staring at the television all evening.

“Well, it’s snowing. I can see it from here. Go out and shovel it.”

I looked at him, to the window and back at him. I caught a glance in his eye of something I couldn’t put my finger on but I quickly dismissed it when he pointed to the shovel in the corner of the television room. Funny place to keep something like that, but then again it was my Granddad.

By the time I got back inside from shoveling his driveway I was freezing. If my toes could talk they would be screaming a mixture of profanity and yelp’s of, ‘seriously, you wore runners to shovel the driveway… with no socks by the way!’ I shook off my hood and stomped my feet at the matt. As cold as I was I could still feel some form of heat coming off my sweaty forehead.  “Granddad, I’m finished.” I sang, walking back into the television room with its course carpet that had stains from every bit of food that ever got brought into this room.

“Good.” He said, “Come here boy.” He waved his hand telling me to sit. With a groan he stood up and walked over to me, placing a leather-bound book in my lap.

“What’s this?”

“It was my journal.” He grumbled sitting back down. “You wanted to know who and what I was like when I was your age. Now you can.”

I couldn’t find the words right away. I felt conflicted and excited all at the same time and I said, “Thank-you.”

“Yeah. Don’t mention it. Seriously.”

I traced his name stitched on the cover, Timothy Rogers, with my first finger. The thread was a faded blue and I smiled, I was named after him.

“Turn to page thirty-eight, that was the day when I first got deployed. You can read out loud if you want.” Granddad said.

Written by Alecia Writes

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