creative projects · Fiction

50 Cents

A little short story I wrote a while ago that I thought I share. Hope you all enjoy.


Something was off.

It’s been a long day of work. Adrianne wanted nothing more than to fall into bed and let the unkempt sheets magically wrap around her to take her to far off dream land. But there was something extremely off. She couldn’t readily put her finger on it.

She took two steps into the room. Everything seemed to be in its rightful place. There were clothes on the floor, her clock on the window sill, Manny the bear under the lamp and shoes placed precariously throughout the floor. What was it? What was missing?

Her eyes drifted around the floor.

Oh, that’s right.

Where was her change? That bit of loose change placed right here in the center. In its place was a bright red stain. Wait, that was new.

Actually, it was less of a stain and more of a smear. It almost looked like an exclamation point which, in its own way, alerted her of the theft. She wouldn’t touch it. It looked harmless enough but she couldn’t be too sure. She more she stared at it the more it ticked her off. Who would steal her money and then leave a mess just to punctuate it? What a thing to come back to!

She took a deep breath.

Then again, it was just fifty cents. She remembered dropping the money when she got off work last week. She found it on the sidewalk leading back home by chance. Washington, Jefferson and Roosevelt were all faced heads up beneath the flickering streetlamp, looking at her expectantly. She figured she could do with whatever luck that the coins provided her. She scooped them up and placed them in her jean pocket. When she got back home, she carelessly placed those clothes in her pile and went to bed. It wasn’t until the next morning that she saw those coins in that same heads up position in the middle of her carpet. They shimmered in the early afternoon rays that stole through her curtains. For some reason, she neglected to pick them up again.

Now, they were gone and only a red smear marked the crime scene.

“What’s up, Anne?”

Her roommate Gloria was waiting in the doorway.

“No-nothing,” She stared back at the stain. “Actually, did you take the money here?”

“Money where?” Gloria moved closer and then froze, “Oh, I’m sorry, Anne, I didn’t mean to leave a mess.”

“So you did take it?”

“Well, it was just lying there,” Gloria said with a playful smile.

“So you thought that gave you the right to take it?”

“Jesus, Anne, it was only fifty cents,” she responded rather lightheartedly as she made her way out of the room, “Besides I was hungry.”

“Hungry?”

“I wanted French fries and I was short on change for the Dollar menu.” Adrianne furrowed her brows and Gloria rolled her eyes. “Are you mad I made a mess? It’s just ketchup. I’ll clean it up.”

“Why did you bring ketchup into my room?”

Gloria sighed and leaned against the door post, “After I got something to eat I wanted to watch some movies. You always hoard all of them in here.”

“The ones I paid for, yes.”

“Are you really going to get upset over this? I’ll pay you back if you want. I didn’t know you cared that much.”

“No, no,” Adrianne said turning away massaging her temples to drain her growing frustration. “I’m just tired.”

“I’ll say.” Gloria then left. Forgetting her offer to clean the mess she made.

Adrianne couldn’t be bothered.

She fell face first into her pillow and closed her eyes. The last thing she thought before drifting to sleep was at least someone got a bit of luck out of the coins.

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