The Christmas Present
by Kristina England
I was certain I had placed the gift card in my designated Christmas drawer. As I lived alone, I could designate a drawer in plain sight at the bottom of my bedroom dresser.
I pulled out the drawer to take a deeper look. I peered into the darkness, reached my hand back there and felt around. No card, not even a piece of lint or haphazard penny.
I stuck the drawer back into its home, losing a handle in the process. This was expected. It had been a cheap dresser. The screws never stayed in place as if they were constantly trying to escape a less than adequate home. I gently lined up the metal hinge, then tightened the screws for the millionth time.
I was one present short and it was Christmas Day. My sister wouldn’t miss it and I convinced myself I would find it a week later.
A year passed and as I stuck presents in the drawer in preparation for another holiday, my cat came around the corner and dropped something from her mouth. She darted out of the room and left me staring at the gift card perplexed.
“But how? Where?”
I had forgotten about the cat, the same cat who had stolen a roll of toilet paper and made confetti out of it under my bed.
A week later, I counted all my gift cards. The lost one was there, but another of my sister’s cards, bought two days before, was gone. The cat sat behind me, eyes staring straight ahead, unreadable.
I muttered and began searching the house as she followed me around. I could almost feel her eyes saying, “You’re getting cold,” yet her face seemed to grow warmer with each minute in that shared, indisputable language of laughter.
NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I immediately thought of this story when I read the Lost and Found theme. My cat can be best described as a class clown and I never know what she’ll do next. She makes for good entertainment and I always think works herself into my creative process knowingly as she loves attention. Of course, she always learns new tricks, but never shakes the old ones. Maybe one day I can keep the bathroom doors open without her stealing a roll of toilet paper. There’s always hope.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kristina England was born and resides in Worcester, Massachusetts. She is an artist and writer. Her work has appeared in several magazines, including Foliate Oak, New Verse News, Silver Birch Press, and Tipton Poetry Journal. For the latest on her writing and artwork, follow her on facebook at facebook.com/kristinadengland.