The Passport

What’s up with the long line?  I managed to find a parking space over on Lanscombe, but it wasn’t easy, and parallel parking isn’t my thing, but i did it. Hopefully the trip down here will be worth it. I came downtown with a specific thing in mind. There’s a great little shop down here called Wands and Stardust. They have all kinds of cool stuff. Antique knicknacks, old jewelry, mostly costume, but some of it is fabulous; you just have to make sure you look carefully so you don’t miss anything. A couple of weeks ago, i came down and found a mood ring!  Remember those?  This one works. The colors are spectacular. I was at work the other day and feeling frustrated. It turned the brightest red i’ve ever seen!  Then after work, i turned on the news, and there was more hideous news about sleazy Trump. My ring turned an even deeper shade of red that alternated with neon orange, like it was going to explode any minute!  I took it off and left it on my dresser. I’ll wear it again after the election.

One more block to walk, and i’ll be there. The long line appears to be at the place directly across the street from Wands and Stardust. Can’t remember off the bat what shop that is.   As i get closer, i can see it. It appears there are about thirty people in line ouside the door. They spill down the store steps and on to the sidewalk. The line ends where i need to cross the street. I ask the last person in line what’s going on. He says that the bakery is going out of business, and they’re giving away free cakes and cookies. I don’t remember this place being a bakery. Maybe i never paid attention. But i’ve walked by this building many times in the ten years i’ve lived in town. I thought it was an art gallery. I figure that the line is going fast, and i can go across the street after to check out my favorite shop. There’s plenty of time.

Turns out there are no pastries left by the time i get there. They’ve given it all away. Ran out six people ago. But since i waited for quite awhile, one of the three women gives me a small purple box. There’s nothing in it. My confusion shows. She takes off the bracelet she’s wearing, smiles at me, and hands me the bracelet.

I say, really, ma’am, i didn’t wait that long. You don’t have to give me anything.

She smiles again and says, you can call me Pascale, and i want you to have this. It’ll bring you more good fortune than any pastry ever could.

And i say, well thank you, but are you sure?  …

Yes, i couldn’t be more certain.

So i accept the bracelet and go to put it in the little box.

Why don’t you wear it home, Phoebe?

I do a bit of a double take because.. she knows my name?  I start to ask her, but she cuts me off.

Here let me help you. And remember, this bracelet is a passport of sorts. With this, you can go where your heart most desires.

I let her put it around my left wrist. It is indeed gorgeous. It’s made of pearls, moonstone, and what looks like a two carat amethyst in the center. It’s costume, i figure, but it sure sparkles like it’s real. I put the box in my purse and head out the door. It’s dark outside. Why is it dark?  I went in the bakery at two pm. And Wands and Stardust is closed. In fact, it’s not Wands and Stardust at all, or any kind of a shop.  It looks like a townhouse. I cross the street to get a closer look. Yes, it’s definitely a residence. And.. on the door is the street number in gold, 221B. What is going on?  I’m on the wrong street. Am i dreaming?  I stand on the sidewalk and look back at the bakery, but it’s not the bakery. There’s a two story brick home where the bakery was. I knock on the 221B door.  A tall man answers.  He has dark, reddish hair, and is wearing old fashioned Victorian style clothing. He says, welcome, Phoebe!  Mr.Holmes and i have been expecting you. Pascale contacted us, and said you’d be along shortly.. and here you are!  Mr. Holmes appreciates punctuality!

So i go in. It’s getting cold, and this seems like it might be fun!

By M. Raynes


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