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The Silver Watch

by
Yavin Koenigsberg...@ age 12

The trains stood there, silently waiting. The pale moonlight reflected off of the trains; barely illuminating the trainyard. Yet as dim as that light may have been; it was enough so that John could see the hands on his silver watch. John was a poor man, and his attire reflected his status. His clothes were squalid, his hair was unbrushed in weeks, and hadn't it of been such a cold night the mere smell of him would make you nearly gag.

John hadn't always been this poor, he had once been a wealthy stockmarket trader. Making million dollar deals, and high class luncheons. Yet this all ended with the crash. The mere thought of the crash made john shudder with fear and anguish. Everything he had was lost on that fateful day. John lost his business, his mansions, his friends, his clothes, his money, and all he had left was a single item from his former life. His wonderful silver watch. He watched it gleam in the moonlight, the watch read twelve to midnight. He smiled, and put it back in his pocket. He loved that watch, and had taken it with him went the bank collectors had taken his assets. He could never part with that watch, it was a family heirloom, and had been in his family for three generations.

Now he was in a little town, just north of Seattle. Not far from his winter home; which he had been at the time of the crash, visiting one of his mistresses. Standing alone, next to the freight train, he pondered his position.

"I'll go to Canada, yes," he mumbled, "I still have a few rich friends there that'll take me in, they must!"

John climbed into one of the train cars, one that was intended for livestock transport, but would suit his purpose fine. As he stumbled around inside the car, the rank smell of a festering rat filled his lungs. He nearly threw-up, the smell making his stomach swim with nausea. He looked around at the straw bedding on the floor. It wasn't much, but it'll make a good enough bed for the night.

The train sounded its whistle and slowly began to move. John, sat down on the straw bedding, and laid his head to rest. As he watched the train slowly leave the train yard, he began to think of how wonderful it would be to sit in front of a fireplace right now. The scenery flashed passed the train; passed John's vision. Soon his weary eyes closed, and he slept.

Late that night he was awaken by a sound. He could not remember what the sound was, but nevertheless it woke him up. In the corner of his eyes he saw that it was snowing outside of the train. The snow reflected what little light there was, making it easier for John to see in the dark. He looked at the other side of the train car. Shadows upon darkness danced before his vision, and for a second he thought he could see the outline of a person. Very faint, but yes, there was someone else in there with him. He clenched his precious watch tightly in his hand.

"Is someone there?" he asked the darkness.

At first there was no answer to his inquiry. But then, in a flash almost too quick to see, the figure lunged forward. A robber no doubt, and he wanted John's wonderful silver watch.

The robber lunged at John, the flash of a knife sheared the flesh on his shoulder and dug deep into his nerves. John clenched his fist and in a furry, hit the robber with all of his might. The robber staggered back from the blow, loosing control over the knife. It hit the ground and slid across the wooden floor. The robber and John exchanged blows. With the watch still clenched in his hand, John struck the robber in the chest; knocking the wind out of him. But before John could send another blow his way, the Robber flung a swift upper-cut to John's chin. The blow knocked John to the floor. His watch flew out of his hand, slid across the floor, and came to a halt only a foot from the open car door.

The Robber leaned over to pick up the watch. John couldn't let that happen. John scrambled across the floor, blood and pain screaming from his wound. He grabbed the watch before the Robber even laid a finger on it. As John looked up, with the watch clenched in his hand, he saw a fist hitting his frost-bitten face. The force struck him hard, and he fell from the train...

...No ground met him when he fell, for the train had been crossing a bridge over a frozen river at that very moment. He fell until the ice met him, he plunged right through the ice into the water. His head popped up for air, his lungs strained to accept the oxygen just before he sank back down below the ice. Freezing, he cried out, but he could not hear his voice. Only the beating of his heart, and the ticking of his watch. Freezing, so cold. His arms thrashed around in the cold water, searching for an opening in the ice. But he found none, for he was now trapped under the ice.

The beating and ticking of his heart and watch were now synchronized. The beating went on, and on. Then, as the cold enveloped him, the beating ceased, and only the ticking of his wonderful silver watch remained. Tick, tick, tick...

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