Short Stories

The adventures of Myrtle's unnamed friend. See what she has gotten herself into this week!

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You Missed a Real Party, Myrtle

You Should'a Been There!

Adventure With Baby Ben

Myrtle, You Just Never Know

Myrtle, You Wouldn't Believe

You Missed a Real Party, Myrtle

Hey, Myrtle, how you doing? Yeah, Spring's sprung looks like. Hey, Myrtle, you missed a real party out at that old graveyard next to Second Baptist Church. Cause that's where we had the egg hunt for the church daycare this year. This year we decided to jazz it up a bit so we could get a few more grown-ups interested, what with just me and one other volunteer not being quite up to running around a graveyard with 20 four-year olds.

No, the daycare kiddies are not 24 years old, Myrtle, we had 20 of ‘em, all of them were four years old, more or less. Couple of threes, one or two fives. Jazz it up? Make it more fun, Myrtle, more fun!

How? Well, we decided since the Halloween Costume Contest went over so good we'd try our hand at Easter costumes. You know, Roman soldiers, apostles, angels, that kind of thing seeing it was the day after Good Friday. Naturally we had to allow Peter Cottontail and such, too. Even had one little kid in a jump suit stuffed with plastic grass made up like an Easter basket, can you picture it? Okay, I'm getting to it, where's your patience, Myrtle?

Me? A chicken suit left over from the egg jamboree last year, Myrtle. I figured what with baby ducks and Easter bunnies and all I might as well. Yeah, I looked pretty funny, all them feathers were molting pretty bad by now but I looked better'n some of them. Imagine a 200 pound Easter egg with legs? Humpty Dumpty. Yeah, that was the preacher, guess his wife couldn't find anything else to fit him and he wanted to "fit in!" That was a joke, Myrtle. He did look pretty funny, though.

Well, I had the job of hiding the eggs and the old cemetery hasn't been used in years but it does have Perpetual Care. Perpetual, Myrtle. Forever? Always? Yeah, they mow it regular and call it perpetual care. Anyway, it had been a week or so and there was plenty of easy hiding places, not too hard for the little ones, you know.

Anyway, I had most all of the eggs hid real good, some nestled up right against the wall under a handful of pine straw, some under a clump of weeds, nothing too hard to find. But I wanted a real special place for the prize egg, you know, the plastic one with the dollar bill in it, so I was rooting around a couple of the old markers. Cause they had tall grass growing up close where the lawn mower can't get. Yes, if they had been mine I would've been more persnickety, Myrtle, but they wasn't and I wasn't.

So I was pulling on one of them tall clumps aiming to make a little hole down beside a marker to put that prize egg in and darn if a square of grass didn't come right up, just like that clump was a handle! It was a square of sod, Myrtle. Sod, you know, like when you don't have patience to plant seed and you just buy a ready-made lawn all rolled up like carpet? And it was just a little bit overgrown so it didn't look any different from the rest of the grass out there.

Well, it came up pretty as you please and uncovered a square hole in the ground. You'll never guess what was down there, Myrtle. No, not a coffin. Well, six feet or so further down there probably was a coffin. No, I don't know whose coffin it would have been, Myrtle, I didn't note the name on the grave marker. No, their family might not have liked me pulling up their grass, if they had known about it, I agree. Unless it was their box down in that hole.

A box, Myrtle. There was a box in that hole. It was just a foot or so deep and there was this metal box with a locked lid. Yeah, locked up good and tight. Now, you know me, Myrtle, you know I don't snoop into nobody's business as a rule. But the more I looked at that box and that hole and that piece of grass, the more I thought something peculiar was going on here.

So I left that box down in the hole and patted the grass back down on top of it. I figured there was no sense ruining the day for all them young'uns chomping at the bit for the egg hunt and I just found another spot for the prize egg like I didn't know nothing about nothing. Then I headed back to the church fellowship hall, me, my feathers and all.

Now, Myrtle, I knew better than to blab it right out, what'd you think? Course I did put a bug in Humpty Dumpty's ear. The preacher, Myrtle, the preacher, remember? And we placed a nice private telephone call to the Sheriff. Yeah, I still had his card from the other month, I keep it in my wallet right next to my driver's license, you never know when something like that might come in handy.

One of them plain-clothes deputies showed up in a few minutes in his plain pickup truck. He just mingled with the crowd of mamas and grandmamas and all like he was just driving by, kind of casual. By then we'd turned loose all the kiddies for the hunt and I was out there helping the little ones round the edges. To keep a watch, Myrtle. You know, to see if anybody was showing any special interest in that special spot.

Yeah, it didn't take too long to figure out who it was. Little Bo Peep. One of them new daycare helpers was dressed up to beat the band. She even had a shepherd's crook, would you believe it? She strolled right over in that direction, then proceeded to stumble and fall down. She plopped herself right on top of that particular patch of grass, claiming her ankle was sprained. No, she wasn't hurt for real, Myrtle, it was make believe, that's all it was.

Why? So nobody else would find the box I guess, Myrtle, why else? I bet they had a conniption fit when we picked that old cemetery for the egg hunt this year. They must have got some more nervous about their hiding place and sent her to stand guard - or sit guard over it, in this case.

Now, here's the best part, Myrtle. The preacher came waddling over and sat himself down right next to her, told her he'd stay till somebody could come check her hurt foot but really it was to make sure she didn't abscond with no evidence. Abscond? Get away, Myrtle, get away with the evidence, you know, proof of some crime or something. And then I sort of meandered up too, just to keep them both company, me and my fluffy feathers. We was a sight, I'm here to tell you, Humpty Dumpty, Little Bo Peep and the Easter Chicken hunkered down together on top of a cemetery plot, like it was just an everyday occurrence.

Well, that way we could let the kiddies finish up their hunting and go inside for their cake and colored eggs safe and sound, see? So that's just what we did, and then the deputy comes over and pulls that box right out of the ground pretty as you please, and you never heard such spluttering and fuming and cussing coming out of such a pleasant looking lady! She went to pounding on him with her shepherd's stick, but he got the handcuffs on her right enough.

It was counterfeit, Myrtle! It was counterfeit plates and a pile of phony twenty-dollar bills in that little box. They sure didn't count on a big Easter chicken finding their "nest egg!" We had Secret Service, SLED, FBI, TV cameras, the whole nine yards before the day was out. I'm going to get a hundred dollar reward to boot, Myrtle, how about that! We finally trucked inside for some cake and coffee and boiled eggs ourselves - well, all but Bo Peep, she was being hauled away in the unmarked. But no doubt about it, it was a real party, Myrtle, a real party! You really should have been there.

Copyright 2022, Elizabeth G. Cox. All Rights Reserved.

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