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A helping hand

Bethany Witt
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"Shaking Hands"

Savanah Meyne

The old woman popped the trunk of her car revealing a sea of grocery bags and began the daunting task of getting them inside the house. She picked up the first bag, containing canned vegetables, and struggled to hold it with one hand. 

“Here, let me help you with those ma’am,” a voice called out behind her.

She turned around, startled. Standing behind her on the sidewalk was a young man who appeared to be in his late twenties. Something looked familiar about him, like a face that had been plastered in the news. However, the elderly lady was sure she had never seen him before. She wondered where he had come from. She was hesitant to accept his offer, after all you can’t trust anyone these days. However, the woman knew she couldn’t complete the task by herself. After noticing how trustworthy his appearance seemed, she agreed.

He got right to work helping her. She followed behind him carrying the lighter bags and instructing him where to set them. He didn’t seem keen on conversation, but she made small talk with him as they worked.

“Do you live around here?” she asked him. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen you before.”

“No,” the man replied, “I’m just passing through.”

As she was handing him the last grocery bag from the trunk of her car, her hand momentarily brushed against his. It felt icey cold. She tried not to let this bother her, but she couldn’t seem to forget the shocking cold feeling.

Before she knew it, they had taken all of the groceries inside.

“Wait,” the woman called as the man started to leave, “Let me give you some money for helping me.”

She turned to pick up her purse from the armchair nearby and quickly retrieved five dollars. She opened the door to give the money to the man, but he was nowhere to be seen. She looked up and down the street, but there was no sign of the mysterious man. It was like he disappeared into thin air.

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