Wishing at a Water Fountain

2 min
Image of 2018
Image of Short Story
It really is humbling to be stumped by a water fountain. And yet here there he stood, standing stuck with a coin in the palm of his hand watching the water spout. What brought him here? A wish. It had been a long time since he made a wish at a water fountain. But as he walked and saw this one, gray and slightly chipped, he recalled the single coin in my pocket. This should be fun he thought to himself. But as he twirled that coin through his fingers, he wrestled with exactly what he should wish for.

He took the coin and scratched it through his beard. He knew that his family was really struggling with money lately. Perhaps he could wish to win the lottery. Or perhaps he could wish for a stable job that made more money than he did now would fall into his lap. But he was already on a path to follow his dreams, he just needed to more time to see if it would come to fruition.

Maybe he could instead wish for patience, that in the long run his work would pay off. But that did seem like a bit of selfishness to ask for his family to wait for the future. He looked across the pool of water as an older couple passed, which reminded him of his own grandparents. Of course, he could always wish for their good health. They had not been doing too well themselves. That was it. But then he looked down at his fraying shoes and closed his eyes. He had not gone to see them in too long. They would never blame him, and he had been busy for a while. A frustrated sigh escaped his lips.

Make this easy on yourself, he thought as he saw another young family pass him by. People like them deserve a better world. He brightened as he prepared to flip the coin into the clear blue pool in front of him. But just as his thumb flexed, he hesitated. Why had he missed that chance to volunteer that he had promised? He was just as capable of helping as anyone else. Well, he did have so many responsibilities. Right, that was why. But that didn't make him feel any better. When had he started to spend more time worrying, and less time actually doing?

He listened to the spray of water splashing into the pool below. Things used to be so much simpler he thought to himself while thumbing that small coin still in his hand. Or was it him that had changed he pondered as he sat at the edge of the fountain. Peering over his shoulder, he saw his only reflection in the clear water below. His face did not used to have so many creases, especially not between his brows. He softened the skin on his face. That looks better, he assessed. His face used to be so bright with optimism and positivity. The face of someone who could tackle the world. As the sun reflected off the water, he shielded his eyes and decided.

That is what he would wish for. As he stood up and straightened his shoulders, he nodded to himself. That was simple. He would wish for that old bright face to return. He closed his eyes, and smiled to himself as he silently tossed the coin and waited for to hear the plop as it broke the surface of the water. He turned to walk away. Yes, this face he could wear. This he could do.

A few words for the author? Comment below. 0 comments

Take a look at our advice on commenting here

To post comments, please