July 19, 2016 -Prompt- “Name on a Napkin”

Name on a Napkin

The winding cobblestone streets slowed my progress as I hurried back to the restaurant I had left twenty minutes earlier. It had been a wonderful lunch served with the house wine, of which I had partaken more freely than was advisable. My lunch companion had been a complete happenstance, a chance encounter for which I was very grateful, for he turned out to be the contact I was sent to find. He had written his alias on a napkin, which I realized now, must have become lost when I paid the bill and left. The restaurant would be closed for the afternoon, and I had to get that name before that happened. As I turned a corner, I tripped over a loose stone and bumped right into my lunch companion.

Karen Hydock


Heraldo now that’s an unusual name. Could the controversial journalist Heraldo Rivera have been here? It seemed unlikely to Charmaine as she stared at the name, all in capital letters, on the napkin. This was nothing but a small town diner, in a small village in a small valley in the middle of nowhere.

Of course, there was always the possibility some peculiar event had taken place here. Maybe Al Capone had used it as hideout or perhaps UFO’s had been seen and filmed by the locals, and with all his unmistakable fervor Heraldo had come riding into town to investigate.

Charmaine turned the napkin over in her hand it looked like someone had drawn some sort of map on it. There was a large X in one spot where two lines intersected. What a mystery!

Just then the bells over the diner’s door jangled and a tall man in a cowboy hat entered. “Hey, George,” he called out.

The person behind the bar looked up. “What can I do for you Smitty?”

“Where’s Heraldo I need the directions he left me to his uncle’s place out on the mountain.”

Charmaine sighed. “Damn, it’s no mystery.”

Christine Howard


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