unidentified photo, found in a Missouri antique shop
as shared by Tess at Magpie tales
It was a hot July afternoon. Hitting the 3rd bottle of Heineken from ice box, he wiped sweat from his forehead on his upturned sleeve. What is it with summers? First you wait for them to come by and when they do, you can’t seem to wait for them to get over.
Okay Jeff! Just one more plank and the deal is over. Stop grumbling! He cuffed himself mentally.
Keeping the bottle aside, as he was working on the last plank he remembered summers weren’t always so grumpy. In fact, as a child he never felt the heat of it. Along with three of his friends he used to have a lot of fun in summers. They had their own Fantastic Four version, scooping around the small town looking for trouble. He grinned at the things they sometimes found out. Folks here were scared of them especially during summers when schools were off and the fantastic four were let loose. Moreover, July was a special month to him because it was his birthday month. He used to rule their group for an entire day with no school, no studies, lots of cake, many surprise gifts & just pure fun.
Lost in his thoughts, he hammered the nail by mistake on his thumb.
With an Ouch! and serious cursing he was brought back from flash back.
Silently appraising his work he jumped down the last tree step he just plugged in.
There! It looks good. It could use one more coat of paint.
He had been working on the tree house which the four of them had built and battered. All his friends long gone their separate ways were coming in town a week later and he wanted to give them a big surprise by bringing back some of their memories. He was considering about that paint job, rubbing at the back of his neck, when a car honked from behind him. It didn’t register him instantly that the honking was for him as he was spaced out again with his mind imagining the dumbfounded faces of his friends when they see their tree house again. Screeching tootle of the car then pierced through his thoughts and he winced as he turned around.
Surprise. Surprise. Surprise.
Three voices screamed simultaneously from the car.
Holy shit! What are you guys doing here? Jeff yelled as he ran towards the car.
Emma all but shrieked
Hap Hap Happy Birthday Jeffie boy!
Just the way she always used to wish him. Behind her Erick was smiling widely.
From the front seat, Ella whistled wolfishly.
Speechless as he saw his three friends beaming at him, he wondered did anybody ever get over their childhood?
***Written for Magpie Tales #79. Have a look and enjoy some refreshingly nice takes on the prompt!