Karen logged onto EBay on the library computer. The pawn dealer had offered her fifty dollars for the teapot Henry gave her mother thirty years ago. She though she could get a better price selling it on-line.
As Karen entered her password, she recalled the night Henry had given the teapot to Peggy. He had been desperate to think of the perfect gift—an engraved cigarette case, a silver candlestick, a fur stole. But he knew nothing would ease Peggy’s mistrust of Henry.
Karen held her breath when Henry handed Peggy the scarlet gift box on Christmas Eve.
“Romm’s, eh?” Peggy said seeing the gold foil seal on the box. “You can’t buy me Henry.”
“Mum!” Karen whispered.
“It’s okay Karen. No Mrs. O’Brien It isn’t a bribe. The gift isn’t even from Romm’s. The box was just the right size.”
Peggy pried the lid off the box and looked inside. Her face was emotionless for a moment, then her eyes became glassy.
“How? Where did you find this?”
“Karen told me she broke your teapot when she was a little girl. She described it so vividly that when I saw this one in a shop on the Cape I thought it must be similar.”
“It looks just like the one my mother brought with her from Ireland. It was the only thing she had besides the clothes on her back. It’s perfect Henry. Thank you.”
Karen shut down the computer. There were other ways to pay the rent.
I’m linking up with Write on Edge this week to continue Karen’s story. In homage to the classic game “Clue”, we were challenged to use the words candlestick, library and scarlet in a piece of fiction or non-fiction in 250 words or less. If you like this, read more about Karen here.