I bought a cheap watch from a crazy man, who stood in front of the five and dime with a box full of junk. Trinkets maybe, from his better days.
I tried to walk by and pretend I didn’t notice him, but something made me look up. Our eyes met, a shiver coursed down my spine. His eyes held the cold weight of some kind of dark knowledge. I didn’t want to know what he knew, yet I couldn’t turn away. I felt fate’s hand push me toward him.
“Is there something you like, miss?” His voice was older than his grizzled face. The old man tipped the box so I could see the contents closer.
I tried to look away, my eyes turned themselves to the box. I shook my head gently. “No, thank you. I don’t have time, I’m late.”
He reached out and grabbed my hand. “I have just the thing for seeing time.” He pulled a pocket watch from the box. Its age showed on the engraved metal. Rubbed smooth where it had been held and touched most often.
“That’s a lovely watch but….” The moment he placed it into my hand I felt a tingle of energy flow though my hand and up my arm. Suddenly the air around her felt charged, like before lightning strikes.
When I tried to pull my hand from his my fingers brushed the release. The case opened and my eyes fell to the face of the watch. The hands ticked on minutes and hours as the air thickened around me. It seemed like an ordinary thing, just a cheap watch on the outside but there was something else.
I could feel it becoming part of me. I tried to let go of it but my fingers curled tighter around the thing instead. I pulled five dollars from my pocket and placed it in his old withered hand. When I looked into his eyes this time, I saw relief.
I would soon find out what curse he had passed on to me.