One Trickster to Another

by Sue Bunker

Tim and Jake had been roommates for over a year now. Tim had never been roommates with anyone, so it was welcome change for him.

One morning, after a long night of counter strike, Tim dressed up for college and in his hurry dropped something off the table. He didnt notice what it was, but the cracking sound that came next, when he stepped on it five seconds later, made him realize it was something important.

He looked down, and noticed it was a watch. Not just any watch, it was Jakes limited edition Chrysler classic watch. And now it was broken. He picked it up sheepishly, and saw that not only was the glass cracked, but the force of his outdoor rugged shoes was enough to pierce through the dial and break the whole damn thing. He quickly looked around to check if Jake was back yet from the bathroom, found he was not, and so quietly pocketed the broken wristwatch and walked out to class.

Tim met Jake later at the college canteen. Jake signalled him over to his place, and he nervously walked over.

Tim had a guilt ridden conscience the whole day. He was not sure what to do with the watch. Buying another watch was unthinkable; he simply didnt have the money to cover the expenses. And then suddenly a light bulb went on inside his head.

Why dont I buy a cheap replica of this watch? It might be a little hard to find, but I bet john can arrange one within a few days, thought Tim to himself. John was the local cosmetic and fancy stuff seller in the market located just south of the college.

Hey man, you left unusually early today. You do realise that you dont extra marks for being early, right? smirked Jake as they started to eat.

Well, yeah, but... started Tim nervously.

Jake immediately cut off and put on a serious face as he started, and hey, by the way did you see my watch. I couldnt find it today. I am pretty sure I kept it on the table.

Without a second of thought, Tim said, well yeah, Dan picked it up while on my way out. He said something about a meeting with someone. Tim knew well Dan wouldnt be back for a couple of days, as he had to go home for a family emergency. Also, he knew something else had started, a small lie, which he imagined was only going to get bigger.

By that evening, Tim had made contact with john, who repeatedly assured him of getting an exact replica within the next few days.

By the end of that week, Tim had bought an exact discounted replica of the watch. He still had that guilt feeling hanging over him, and so decided to buy Jake something else.

A plant? Why on earth did you suddenly buy me a plant? laughed Jake as he felt around the new plant pot that Tim handed him over.

Well you know, you always talk about going green. So I thought this would be a perfect fit for you. replied Tim.

Well, uh, thanks man, Jake answered, calmer now.

Tim smiled and turned away, feeling he had scored an invisible goal. He had handed over the watch to Jake that morning, and he didnt notice anything amiss, yet.

Suddenly Jake took a long deep breath, and started, Tim, there is something I have to tell you. You remember that cool gamepad of yours that just broke down a couple weeks ago?

Well yeah, how could I forget? That cost me a fortune and it didnt even last two months!

Well, actually it didnt just break down by itself; I accidentally hit it on the shelf a bit too hard

What the hell... retorted Tim, clearly angry now. But then the image of the broken expensive wrist watch floated before him, and his anger slowly began to subside. But he couldnt show it to Jake just as yet, or he would notice it.

I didnt want to tell it to you so soon, but now you bought me that plant and all, it was all just too much for me to handle

Well ok its alright man, replied Tim wanting to settle the matter soon. He didnt want to continue this matter any longer than needed.

As Tim turned away to head out of the room, Jake started scratching his watch. He would always do that whenever he was nervous or tensed. And as Jake held up his hand to check the time five seconds later, he noticed the paint coming off the watch.

What the hell....

Tim didnt need a second more to gauge the situation. He muttered some excuse, and ran out of the room as quickly as possible. As one trickster to another, he knew he was going to owe Jack for life.

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