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The Contract

Written September 16, 2013

This is a short story I developed for the writer’s prompts from Writer’s Digest. For those that don’t know, a writer’s prompt is where they give you a scenario and you create a story to finish it. I guess it gets your creative juices flowing. From concept to completion, it took me about 15 minutes to write this. 🙂

Scenario

The used car salesman seems a little fishy, and it takes some serious convincing on his part to get you to sign the contract. And once you do sign, he seems to have a smug look on his face – more so than usual. He says you should have read the fine print. When you look at it now, what does it say? Write this scene.

My Story

Jocelyn looked into the eyes of the devious salesman. She was extremely nervous about what she might find as she glanced over her contract. She began reading the very small print at the bottom of her contract:

This vehicle is sold under “as is” conditions. Once you sign there can be no exchanges or refunds. You are now solely responsible for this vehicle and its occupant

“Occupant?” Jocelyn asked as she looked up at the salesman with a look of utter confusion.

“You’ll see. Now here are your keys. Enjoy!”

The salesman threw the keys to Jocelyn and quickly made his way through a door marked “Employees Only” and he slammed it shut behind him. Jocelyn picked up the keys to her new car and headed outside to do an inspection. She had looked at the car before. She and the creepy salesman even went on a test drive. Who was this occupant mentioned in the contract? She couldn’t remember seeing anyone inside the car. She decided to ignore the strange events that occurred at the dealership. She cranked the car and headed home. After driving a couple of miles down the road she heard a strange noise coming from the backseat. She turned to get a quick look but she didn’t see anything. She heard it again. Again she looked. Still nothing. Finally after hearing the strange noise again she decided to pull over. She got out of the car and began a more thorough inspection of the back seat. She noticed the noise coming from underneath the passenger seat. When she peered underneath, she saw what appeared to be some sort of little elf. He was only a couple of inches tall, wearing black and white striped leggings, a little black shirt and a pointy black hat. He even had cute little pointy ears.

“Ahhh you’ve found me”, he said in a high-pitched elvish voice.

“What in the world? What are you and where did you come from?” Jocelyn asked.

“I am a wishing elf who has been magically bound to this car. I can grant you three wishes, but after that I will disappear.”

“Wow! That’s great!” said Jocelyn. She wasn’t sure why the salesman was so secretive about this hidden clause in their contract. “Is there a catch to this deal?”

“No catch” the little elf said, “Only I can’t give you infinite wishes.”

“Okay. I wish for a million dollars, a new house and a new fur coat.”

“Your wishes are granted. Go to your current home and your wishes will be waiting for you.”

And with that, the little elf disappeared into thin air. Jocelyn was so excited about what had happened. She couldn’t wait to get home and tell her husband the wonderful events of the day. When Jocelyn pulled into her driveway, she couldn’t believe what she was seeing. Police cars, fire trucks and an ambulance were parked outside her home that was fully engulfed in flames. She screeched the car to a halt and started to run toward her home but a fireman stopped her.

“Ma’am you can’t go in there. It’s too dangerous.”

“But that’s my house! All of my stuff is in there! Oh my God! I need to call my husband at work and tell him!”

The firefighter shook his head.

“Ma’am your husband was in the house.”

“No he was at work.” Jocelyn said frantically.

“I’m sorry ma’am,” the fireman said with sorrow, “We just could not get to him in time.”

Jocelyn did get all three of her wishes. Her husband had just bought a million dollar life insurance policy. Jocelyn moved in with her parents who had just bought themselves a new home. As for her fur coat: Well she got that too.

A fireman walked up to Jocelyn with what appeared to be a bundle of black and white fur. Jocelyn began running up to the fireman.

“Oh Sparky. You’re okay!” she said.

The fireman, with a strange look on his face, handed the lump of fur over to Jocelyn and simply mumbled to himself.

“I’ve never known of anyone to name their fur coats”.

Jocelyn looked down at what she thought was her beloved dog, only to realize he had been turned into a fur coat. She screamed a variety of obscenities at the car salesman and the devious little elf.

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