Eat Your Bret Harte Out

Editors

We read a lot of different stories and most of them are short stories that seem to have an end where everyone just has to feel empty inside. Here’s a whole lot of character and plot and now it is over and you are miserable. So, I’m just going to make my own short story, and we’ll see just how much fun the readers are going to have.

The great thing about Adam is that he’s a lot like me. We both sleep an inordinate amount and get carried away by our romantic ideas. The only difference is that Adam takes those two qualities and intensifies them to an extreme. On the most recent occurrence, Adam found an opportunity to rest his eyes for an early morning nap right under the first tree to bear fruit. The nap easily could have gone on a day had it not been for the first apple to drop from the tree.

It startled him at first, and anything that startled Adam out of a nap usually met a quick death. However, as soon as his gaze met the apple’s, he found it irresistible. Adam didn’t want to eat the apple; he wanted to protect it and keep it whole. The apple reminded him of the Grecian Urn Keats once wrote about. “Beauty is truth, truth beauty, — that is all Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.” This apple was beauty and therefore truth. Lord Byron wrote of a woman that walked in beauty, but the apple rolled in sublimity. If only Adam could bring it before a council of the world’s finest artists and mathematicians, they would find themselves speechless. Not only would the apple be famous, but Adam would be, too. Within this perfect shape they would find a more perfect number, and he’d surpass Fibonacci’s great nature calculation. With all the wealth the apple would bring, so too would it bring him time.

Most of the time that Adam spent napping, he was also ignoring his work. If the apple could make him rich, then no one would pester him about mundane things. His father wanted help, and his mother wanted money, but he wanted sleep. Adam could satisfy all three with this apple. Adam then wondered exactly how he could tell the world. Who could he trust in the meantime with this beautiful creation? He was almost concerned with even telling God about this.

By now Adam was so caught up in his ideas about the future that he had lost track of the movement of his body. He rolled the apple from hand to hand in a sort of seductive way. His stomach growled, but to no avail. Adam was engrossed in a world of success and admiration. One could even say he had fallen in love with his finding. The kind of love that would make the lovers in “The Gift of the Magi” jealous. At least that’s what he thought it was. The apple would spend its life for him, and, in return, he would spend his life for him, too. A win-win.

Unfortunately, it was not quite as long-lasting as he had hoped. When he snapped back to reality it was much darker. He came out from under the tree and into the light of the kitchen window. His hand felt ridges, and he flipped over the apple. To his dismay, a bite mark was there on display. All the colors drained from his face, and all the dreams drained from his mind. Adam dropped the apple to the ground and walked back inside.