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Sparklewood - Day 4
Published Nov 4, 2010


Written By

Flatter

Composer Artist
20938Views4.6Rating

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If you haven't read the earlier parts yet or need a refresher here's the story so far:

Because the narrator Jake Jarvis suffers from writer's block, he had recently moved to Sparklewood. His daily deliveries of buns and milk appear to be stolen each morning. During one night he notices a large shadow running from his garden. He is drawn to lights at the house of his neighbour Mrs. Roosebud, but upon entering he is thrown out by her.
While checking facts for a new story at the library Jake learns that his house is built on a so-called fairy ground. The previous inhabitant left because of odd accidents long ago. A second effort to befriend his neighbour Mrs. Rosebud fails miserably. The next night he lays in wait for the milk thief, but misses him. The same night sees him getting back to writing again, although he develops some suspicions about his motivations.
The police doesn't take him seriously after he had revealed he's a writer and suspects fairies to be at work. Frustrated he cancels all orders. In the afternoon a Mr. Miller visits him and urges him to move out because of impending fairy activities, but Jake doesn't take him serious. In the early morning the police officier Pauline Harker wakes him up, because she had secretly (but in vain) watched for the milk thief. After a shared breakfast they agree to declare the case as unsolved, but closed.

If you haven't read the earlier parts yet or need a refresher here's the story so far:

Because the narrator Jake Jarvis suffers from writer's block, he had recently moved to Sparklewood. His daily deliveries of buns and milk appear to be stolen each morning. During one night he notices a large shadow running from his garden. He is drawn to lights at the house of his neighbour Mrs. Roosebud, but upon entering he is thrown out by her.
While checking facts for a new story at the library Jake learns that his house is built on a so-called fairy ground. The previous inhabitant left because of odd accidents long ago. A second effort to befriend his neighbour Mrs. Rosebud fails miserably. The next night he lays in wait for the milk thief, but misses him. The same night sees him getting back to writing again, although he develops some suspicions about his motivations.
The police doesn't take him seriously after he had revealed he's a writer and suspects fairies to be at work. Frustrated he cancels all orders. In the afternoon a Mr. Miller visits him and urges him to move out because of impending fairy activities, but Jake doesn't take him serious. In the early morning the police officier Pauline Harker wakes him up, because she had secretly (but in vain) watched for the milk thief. After a shared breakfast they agree to declare the case as unsolved, but closed.

Noon had passed when I awoke again. My internal clock was wide off the mark. I was used to work at the most unusual times, but still I liked a certain regularity in my daily life. The events were shaking me around like a cowboy who's clinging to the rein of a wild horse trying to unseat its rider with all strength. I needed the additional weight of the daily routine. Scolding me for tucking the alarm clock away again I climbed out of the bed. It took a quick shower to clear the cobwebs out of my head. I still wasn't hungry yet, but my laptop all the more. His opened lid gaped at me like a fledgling chirping at his mother. Feed me. Feed me. I couldn't resist the urge to switch him on. Motherly instincts won over. I intended to wrap up the story of the two lovers. Some details were missing yet and I was still not sure about how to end the story, but I had the feeling I had already overcome the worst obstacles. To get into mood again I read large parts of my manuscript again. All in all I was still quite pleased with my writing. Sparklewood had finally begun to work its magic, it seemed. My publisher would be happy to hear it, too. That reminded me I had not checked my mail yet. Surly a letter of her would greet me today. I smiled in anticipation. When I went outside a surprise awaited me. During all the days that I had stepped outside full of dark foreboding the worst which had happened to me was the absence of some groceries. But the first time I left the house with a positive feeling, something strange lay in wait for me. Over night some mushrooms had grown in an unused part of my front lawn. Their size defied the fact they hadn't been there the day before. Spooky. It gave me the chills.

It didn't help at all they were unnaturally grouped to form a kind of ring. Could this be a fairy ring? I was at a loss. Waiting for my brain to make some sense of it I just stared. Slowly my mind registered another strangeness. Didn't my car look differently today?
With some effort I dragged my eyes away from the fairy ring and focused them on the car. I hadn't been wrong. With dismay I discovered that all its tires were flat. I ran to the car for a closer inspection. They were flat, indeed, but it was no accident. All four tires had been ripped useless. Somebody had used a sharp object to flatten them. This was no boyish prank anymore, but serious business. I was fuming.

What a senseless act of hostility!
I checked for any signs the mischief-maker may have left behind, but didn't find any. This was a case for the police. This time I had a more significant crime to report. I went back to the house to call me a taxi. I stopped by my mailbox which I had forgotten to check after seeing the fairy ring. No luck here. Again no letter from my publisher. Another promise not held. The day that had started so bright had paled to a gloomy sequence of letdowns.

The wild horse that was life reared with new energy. I felt dizzy and had to gasp for air. Not being in control was hard to endure.
While I waited for the taxi to arrive, I inspected the fairy ring again. Only now I noticed a banknote lying caught between the mushrooms. The wind must have blown it there. Could it get any stranger?

One minute I was faced with the expense of buying four new tires, the next minute I was finding a banknote large enough to cover the cost. Fate didn't seem to know what to do with me.

In the hope the person that had flattened my tires had lost it I pocketed the money.
I was still shaking my head when the taxi picked me up to drive me to the police station. Suddenly I felt helpless. The car hit a bump. I was being pushed around - and not only by the car. Don Quixote might have mistaken his windmills with enemies, but at least he had known where to point his fear and anger at. I was denied even that. The police station was nearly deserted. I had hoped to meet Miss Harker there, but the only person around was a young man acting like an akward apprentice.

I told him about the vandalism. As if generously sharing secret knowledge he pointed out that insurances usually didn't cover tire damages because some car owners otherwise were tempted to inflict the damage themselves as a cheap way to get a brand new set of unused tires.

He continued with a wink: "But there are always people not reading the insurance police closely enough. You would be surprised to learn how many tools of crime can be found in the tire owner's own garage."
His amusement was lost on me. It was no use to argue with the tenderfoot. And somehow I had my doubts he would turn up next morning at my doorstep, protesting that no new offender had attacked my car again which he had guarded during the night.

So I only asked him to take a message for Miss Harker and left.
The next stop was at a car shop. The elderly clerk seemed to know much more about my car than I myself. When she asked me about the right size of the required tires, I confessed I hadn't known different sizes for passenger cars even existed. Thankfully, I had the vehicle registration with me and she found the necessary tire model in no time. As luck would have it the replacement tires were in stock. The shop operated a service car and the clerk offered to send it together with the tires to my address. In less than two hours I would have them changed. Only thing left to do would be to visit a garage for balancing the wheels.

Gladly I accepted and - less gladly - I paid the bill.
Then everything went wrong again. The clerk frowned at her cash register. Suddenly she became nervous. Politely she asked me to wait a minute, because she needed to sort out a technical problem first.

I waited patiently in the sad certainty whatever happened now could not worsen my mood further. The clerk glanced at me several times while she talked into a phone as if fearing to lose a customer.
I was wrong.

A police car was stopping in front of the building. A policeman stepped hastily out, came in, nodded at the clerk, which nodded towards me in return, and then the officer asked me for my ID.
Perplexed I asked him why. He told me with grave seriousness the clerk had accused me of paying with counterfeit money.

I couldn't believe that nonsense. Was the clerk serious? Where did that come from?

To my genuine surprise the policemen confirmed that the banknote I had offered as payment was counterfeit.
Again I found myself in a car, again not at the driver's seat, but in the back. While I looked out of the window I felt again the lack of control over what life was doing to me.

The car started and drove me to the police station.
So I returned to the police station much sooner than expected.

I was led into an interrogation room, a window-less room with lots of mirrors on one wall. One-way mirrors, I was sure.
Over the next few hours I was asked the same questions over and over again. Officer Hoover was merciless. From whom did I get the counterfeit money? Did I hide any more of it and where? Who were my partners of crime? Wouldn't I like to confess to the crime to get a lighter sentence? My affirmations I hadn't even known I had counterfeit money on me was in vain. It was like talking to a brick wall - and in a way I was, considering the invisible watchers behind the mirrors.

Because the banknote was a big one, Hoover didn't believe I must have gotten it either as exchange money or from a ATM. He said: "Banks scan their money before they give it out. You will have to come up with a better story."
"But I am innocent. I don't know anything about a gang of counterfeiter."

"Well, not knowing is not good enough to avoid punishment, I am afraid. You will get a speeding fine whether you knew about the speed limit or not. With counterfeit money it's similar, except it's a much severe crime." Officer Hoover inspected me silently like a rare insect, before he started his questions over again.

I had the sad feeling the coming night would be a long one.
Thank you for reading this chapter. I do hope you liked it. If you want to do me another favour, please leave a comment whether you liked or disliked the story and what was best or worst! Thank you again. Don't miss the next part ("Night 4")!

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#6RatRaceRobNov 5, 2010

Poor Jake... he knew just enough to recognize that faerie ring... but not enough to leave alone whatever he saw inside it... It may be too late to just give them back their daily milk and buns-- now he may have to include muffins and waffles \:eek\: !!!  Great chapter, Flatter, and your screens of Jake's expressions ((6 and 12 and 21 were especially perfect lol!)) just keep getting better and better the more his life falls apart... er, the more interesting his life gets, I mean rofl... I do hope Miss Harker can help him out of his present trouble... really enjoyed this, and looking forward to the next-- as always!  \:D \:rah\:

#7libertyNov 5, 2010

Talking about a bad day, It's sad that it had to happen to him, I just knew that the money couldn't be real. Who destroy your tires and then leave money on the lawn for the repairs. JAke shouldn't have trused it in the first place you can't presume that people are nice & kind in the first place...Well I just hope that Jake's allright and that he doesn't go to prison...
Wonderfull chapter\:wub\:

#8spitzmagicNov 5, 2010

oh no Flatter, you can't let Jake go to prison...\:eek\: ..Somebody save him..\:eek\:  since I can't ...'ll send Barb she'll do it.....\;\)

#9fabrizioammolloNov 6, 2010

Strange things are happening, and you should never trust them! Poor Jake seems not being very careful... I feel that we are going to have a eventful interesting fourth night! Great chapter and amazing screenshot! \:rah\:

#10YrS92Nov 6, 2010

Oh dear... Things seem to be getting only worse and worse for our friend Jake... Those evil faeries\:mad\: I'm looking forward to Night 4 to see what happens next, I'm hoping to see Ms Harker rescue our unlucky hero\:P Great work\:wub\:

#11IllandryaNov 7, 2010

If I were Jake I would re-order the bun and milk deliveries as soon as they let me out! Poor thing, to finally greet a morning with a sense of hope only to have everything shattered. Looking forward to seeing what happens during the night, I hesitate to guess!

#12socomvinNov 8, 2010

Poor guy, hopefully everything ends up alright

#13jonialNov 8, 2010

how frustrating!!\:\(who would believe him. its like saying you are sane in an asylum.
Oh please write soon. please. \:rah\:

#14ShelleyBNov 14, 2010

Oh Jake!! \:eek\:  I mean, Oh (((Flatter)))!!! Poisonous mushrooms formed into a fairy ring!!! What next???? Sorry I'm so late reading this one; my computer isn't in jail with Jake, but it may resemble his shredded tires if it doesn't straighten up soon! You probably have another installment coming out as we "speak"! I can hardly wait. \:D Suggestions? Get back in touch with Ms. Harker as soon as you (and Jake) can. Things look up when she's around, and a little love in the air may just run off those spiteful little sprites. Your work is first-rate.

#15MangioNov 16, 2010

Oh no ! I guess the fairy ring with money inside was too good to be true \:wub\: Can't wait for more, i hope Miss Harker will be able to get you out of this one \;\) Off to read the next chapter

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