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Strange Deeds Under A New Moon (standard:science fiction, 6895 words)
Author: CrewsAdded: Dec 03 2005Views/Reads: 1754/1298Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
A mystical legend encourages 1930's teenagers to do drastic things, with amazing results.
 



The moon was waning as the cool winter day began. A cold snap had made
its presence known even though spring was fast approaching. Bundled up 
in my favorite coat, I made my way down the street to the nursing home 
at the corner of Main and Elm. My grandfather had called me the evening 
before and asked if I could come and see him. I usually saw him on the 
weekends but his request sounded urgent enough for me to make a special 
trip. 

Even though the nursing home had a beautiful white porch and brick
facing, it always seemed bleak to me. It was probably the knowledge of 
how death always lingered in the hallways more than the building 
itself. My grandfather always called it the “death house,” but as he 
aged he reluctantly realized that it provided the care he needed. He 
always said that the best day of the week was when his only grandchild 
could stop by and see him. It was the best part of my week, too. 

Grandpa was in a cheerful mood when I arrived. He was sitting in his
wheelchair at the window. I saw him through the glass as I walked up 
the steps to the porch. We waved at each other and then he stuck his 
tongue out at me. I could not help but smile at his playfulness. At 
every visit he tried to do something to cheer me up. He would never 
know how much it was appreciated. 

Ten years ago Grandpa lost the love of his life. My grandmother, Grace,
was one of the mildest and loving people I have ever known. The woman 
loved to cook. She could make any bland meal the envy of the world's 
finest chefs. I believe the only thing she loved more than cooking was 
Grandpa. Of course, there was plenty of love in her bosom for her only 
son, my father, and her only grandchild, which was me. But she and 
Grandpa had a special bond that only they could fully understand. Their 
love never wavered and when she took sick, he waited on her hand and 
foot until the day she died. 

Grandpa thought that was the worst day of his life, but events led to
even more sorrow. Three years after Grandma's death, my father and 
mother were killed in a car accident. I was thirteen at the time and 
felt the weight of the world as I buried my parents. My father, Russ, 
had violently swerved his car to avoid hitting a deer in the road. A 
nearby truck driver witnessed the wreck as the vehicle struck a ditch 
and then veered head on into a giant oak tree. My father had just 
retired from baseball and he and my mother were going on a much needed 
vacation. They had asked me to stay home with my grandfather and help 
look after him while they were gone. We were devastated when word came 
that they were both killed at the scene. My grandfather said no parent 
should ever have to bury his children. As for me, many nights I cried 
myself to sleep wishing that deer was dead instead of my father and 
mother. But in one swift moment my grandfather and I were left with 
only each other for support. 

Nurse Rachel, Grandpa's favorite, was finished with tidying the room
when I walked in. Grandpa insisted she give him a hug before leaving. 
After Rachel left the room I smiled and said, “I believe you really 
like her, Grandpa.” He looked at me and raised one eye brow, “Oh, she's 
all right I guess.” And then with a gleam in his eyes he laughed, “Of 
course, you know she wants me!” I laid my coat on his bed and handed 
him the bag of chocolate chip cookies that I had brought. “Ah, 
contraband,” he smiled as he smelled the aroma from the fresh baked 
cookies. 

After some more chitchat Grandpa's demeanor turned more serious. “How is
this weather affecting your hand?” he asked. From birth I had a 
withered left hand. The fingers were small in width and only half the 
length of a normal hand. The doctors said that I could expect arthritis 
to develop as I grew older. “Oh, it's a little stiff in the mornings,” 
I surmised. “I take an aspirin and keep on going.” Grandpa looked out 
his window and then said, “Well, spring will be here before long. Maybe 
the warmer weather will help.” I agreed with him and then he turned to 
face me. “I've never told you the story of my best friend that I had in 
school, did I? His name was Russ.” For a moment I thought I had 
misunderstood him. “He had my Dad's name?” I asked. Nodding his head 
Grandpa said, “Yes, he did. In fact, we named your father after him.” 
With growing interest I pulled a chair close to him and sat down. “It's 
the story of Russ, Gracie, and me, Alex,” he continued as he leaned 
forward and spoke in a hush tone. “I think I would love to hear that 
story, Grandpa,” I said realizing that this was the reason he wanted me 


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