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Rated: E · Fiction · Mystery · #2149765
The clock has a very interesting story to tell.
The 10:10 Cipher

Kathleen McNamara

I have had a place of honor on the library mantle for ages. Keeping time was never my job. I only keep one time, 10:10. As the old man would say after retelling one of his favorite stories about me, “The hands will point the way.”

A few nights ago, the old gentleman took me down from the shelf and gave my face a gentle polish. I was set down on the top of his mahogany desk. He positioned me next to a tarnished brass skeleton key and an old route map for the Royal Mail line. His movements were slow and shaky, his breathing, harsh and labored.

“I hope Tyler remembers all the stories I told him,” he said giving my brass handle a pat. I knew then that I would never be seeing the old man again. I have been sitting here for what must be a few days now, the changes from daylight to darkness my only clues.

The leather bound books lining the shelves of the room are making fun of me. They are proud of the fact that they are all rare and they will be making Tyler rich. I am sure given their pedigree that Tyler will find good homes for all of them. But I remain silent, ignoring their taunts. I know full well I will be having the last laugh.

When Tyler was a child, his grandfather would entertain him with stories of his days working a route on the Royal Mail coach lines. The story that the little boy loved most of all was of the robbery that was never solved. It had taken place near the end of the old man’s tenure will the company. The Royal Bank of Essex was shipping a chest of gold coins to their vaults at their central London headquarters.

The daylight raid by the robbers had caused quite a stir back then. Everyone was sure that it was an inside job. Anyone remotely connected to the bank or the Royal Mail that was working that day lost their jobs, including Tyler’s grandfather. Despite the best efforts of the London Constabulary, the chest of coins was never recovered and the crime never solved.

All of that is about to change. As long as Tyler remembers all of those entertaining stories, the key, the map and yours truly will help him become the one who finally solves that brazen raid. My hands will point the way.
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