Wednesday Writing Prompt 08/16/17

This week's prompt:
An optimistic immortal devotes his time to cheering people up.

I want to remind everyone that they can send any and all submissions to writerschestsubmissions@mail.com.
Write about this prompt or Sunday's poetry prompt! Or make something unique and new that you want to have shared with the world.



Last week's prompt:
You and a friend have decided to try and follow a rainbow to see if the end holds a pot of gold. But when you finally reach the end, you find something much more valuable than a pot of gold- and it changes your life. Write this scene.




The Wish

"Gary, wait up!" said Lloyd. He tried to pedal faster but Gary was still outpacing him by a good clip. At twelve, he was what his mother liked to refer to as rotund. His breath was already coming in explosive gasps from trying to keep up with Gary.
"Come on, Lloyd, or we'll miss it!" Gary threw the comment over his shoulder. Opposed to Lloyd, Gary was in much better shape. Gary was a bit of a nerd and so had much practice speeding away from older bullies intent on giving him a beatdown.
Both had decided to chase the end of a rainbow today. It was something that they had tried before with no success, the rainbow had always disappeared before they had found it. Gary and Lloyd came from the wrong side of the tracks and found themselves wishing that they had been born under different circumstances. They knew if they could just find the end of the rainbow there would be a pot of gold and it would change their lives for the better.
Gary swung off his bike, dumping it on the ground before he had fully stopped. He broke into a run as Lloyd stopped, breathing heavily, and ambled off his bike. He sighed. "Damnit!" he cursed under his breath. At twelve, it was the strongest one he felt comfortable saying, fearing, even out in the middle of nowhere, that an adult might overhear.
He arrived to the edge of a clearing that Gary had stopped at. Gary looked back and cut off any questions with a finger to the mouth. Lloyd tried to be silent but his bulk kept him from "creeping". He winced at the snapping of every twig and was sure that his heart was beating so loud as to be audible from space. When he finally caught up with Gary, he finally saw what he was staring at.
It was a leprechaun. Green suit and buckle hat, stockings and old-fashioned buckle shoes, wielding a shillelagh.
"I can hear you boyos plain as the sun in the sky... why don't you come over here so we can have a wee chat?" the leprechaun said and the boys could hear the smile in his voice.
Gary looked to Lloyd and motioned with his head to the tiny Irishman. Lloyd shook his head vehemently, his eyes wide with fear and distrust. Gary sighed and grabbed Lloyd by the wrist and drug him into the clearing. "Come on, loser, this is what we've been waiting for."
"Gary," Lloyd said, his voice pitching to a whine, "We don't know anything about him!"
"He's a leprechaun. We found him, we get his gold."
"Well, that be a wee bit of a misrepresentation. You found me, that's right but I don't have any gold to give you," the leprechaun said with a wide toothy grin.
"What do you mean there's no gold??" Gary asked angrily.
"Well, the legends get a bit of the story wrong. Our gold is a leprechaun's most treasured possession. It is also the source of our power. We don't just drag it around to every rainbow. No. But..." the fairy let his voice trail off.
"But what?" Gary asked.
"I don't think I should tell you. You look like a mighty fine pair of friends and I wouldn't want to come between you."
"He's right, Gary. We should just leave, something just isn't right here!" Lloyd pleaded, grabbing Gary's arm.
Gary jerked his arm free of Lloyd's weak grip and moved towards the leprechaun. "What do you mean? How would you come between us?"
"Well, it certainly been no small source of strife between the two of you, lad," the tiny man said, a malicious twinkle in his eye, "When you discovered that I could grant you one wish and one wish only."
"Okay, we can make one wish work, we'll just make it for something we can share," Gary said, smiling reassuringly to Lloyd.
"Oh, heavens, if it was only that simple," the leprechaun lamented. He threw up his hands in exaggerated exasperation. "But only one of you can have the wish."
"That's fine," Lloyd sputtered, "I don't want the wish. Gary can have it."
"Oh, boyo, I wish it was that simple," the leprechaun said, giggling at his own joke. "I wish, heh," When both boys stared at him with puzzled expressions, he sighed explosively, "Oh, come on now. A leprechaun wishing? Oh, nevermind. Anyways, both of you caught me. I can't properly grant a wish until one of you is no longer in the picture."
"What is that supposed to mean?" Lloyd whined.
The leprechaun shrugged. "One of you has to kill the other to claim the wish."
"Gary, let's get out of here. This is crazy, we aren't going to kill each other for a wish."
"Damnit Lloyd, why did you have to follow? I can't walk away from this... My mom, she's real sick. Gotta a tumor in her head. I need the wish to save her. This is my one chance."
"What are you saying, Gary?"
"I'm saying goodbye, Lloyd," Gary said, turned towards Lloyd. He pulled his pocket knife from his front pocket, opening it in one quick motion. He laid his left hand on Lloyd's shoulder and smiled reassuringly at him.
Lloyd began to cry and swing his head from side to side. "Please don't," he sobbed, "I'm your best friend, Gary!"
"I wish I was a better friend," Gary said and sank the knife into Lloyd's belly. He marveled how easily it sank in, the flesh just parting to the sharp blade. He helped his friend to the ground and leaned in as Lloyd tried to speak.
"I– I understand," Lloyd said, his breath coming raspy and shallow. Gary watched the light flicker and fade from his eyes.
Gary sat there for a moment looking down at his friend's lifeless corpse. He wiped his nose and stood. In a quiet voice he said, "I think I'm ready for that wish."
"So, you wanting a cure for your ma, is it? What's she got? Cancer? AIDS?"
"Oh, ummm, no, I wish to be rich."
"What do you mean? What about your ma, sick as she is?"
"That was just something I told him so he didn't think I was doing it just to get rich."
"You are one cold young man. So, it is riches you wish, then? Well, all right, easy enough," the leprechaun said. He made a great show of snapping his fingers and smiled. "It is done. Riches will come your way. I think it is time that I made my exit, don't really trust a lad who'd murder his best friend for money." The leprechaun got up and walked away.
"Hey, how do I know that you did what you said you would?"
The leprechaun stopped and didn't turn. "Oh, you'll be rich, don't you worry one bit. My name is Seamus McTaggart and a McTaggart always does what they say they will."
Before Gary could say anything else, the old fairy disappeared. Just winked out of existence. He noticed that the rainbow was gone as well. He sighed and turned to Lloyd. He would have to do something about that.
*******
Gary went back to his life but found that nothing had changed. He still lived on the wrong side of the tracks. No riches every lifted him from the slums that he lived. Eventually, as he grew older he forgot about Seamus and the riches he was promised. He never spared Seamus or poor dead Lloyd a thought as the years rolled on.
When he was twenty-one, Gary went to jail for a string of robberies that he had committed. He had killed four people in the course of robbing seven stores. He was given two concurrent life sentences. Gary served fifty years of those sentences before being paroled.
One of the first things he did, once he was free, was went and purchased a lotto ticket. He was shocked when he returned the next day to find that he had won. When all was said and done, taxes had been removed, he had won fifty-nine million dollars. He immediately went to the bank to put away his money and start enjoying it.
He was surprised to find a face from his past waiting for him in the foyer of the bank. Seamus leaned against one wall, twirling his shillelagh in his hand. "Well, there you are, rich as promised."
"It's been over fifty years!!!"
"Well, fifty-nine to be precise. One million for every year between now and the day you killed your best friend," Seamus said.
"Took you long enough."
"Oh, no, boyo, it took exactly as long as it should have. Now, head in, Time's ticking away!"
Gary shuffled into the bank and tried to ignore Seamus' words. The whole time they were opening his account, he felt uneasy. Jittery. He tried to pass it off as excitement. He knew better. It was anxiety. He told himself that Seamus was just messing with him.
Finally, he had the account open and he headed towards the exit of the bank. Before he made it, he saw a young, chubby boy that looked naggingly familiar. Then the boy turned and Gary saw Lloyd as he remembered leaving him that day. His skin was the grey of the grave.
Lloyd opened his mouth and screamed.
Gary grabbed his chest and fell over dead.
Seamus chuckled.

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