Hello! Today I’m sharing another episode of Unraveled. I hope you enjoy it!
Also, posting may be sporadic for the next week or so, because I’ll be spending lots of time with family, and also celebrating my birthday. Just so you know why I might be more absent from Once Upon a Yarn than usual. (I’m still not 100% used to the new name; just a few days ago I typed cogaroocrafts into my address bar!)
I hope you’re all having a lovely introduction to 2016. Am I the only one who’s still writing 2015 everywhere? At least it’s pretty easy to fudge a ‘5’ into a ‘6’. Next year I’ll be doomed.
Unraveled, Part 4
That afternoon, Hayden and I borrowed my mom’s car and drove to the Lancaster Community Center. Hayden was the navigator, so the car ride was one giant argument: “Turn right here!” “Here?” “No, you passed it, you idiot!” “I thought it was at the next exit.” “Turn here?” “Right. No, I told you to turn left!” “You said right!” Eventually, though, I was parking outside the building in the boiling sun.
“This way,” said Hayden, opening the door and leaping out onto the sun-warmed pavement. I followed her through the front doors into a bright, large entryway with a reception desk, cushy-looking chairs and couches, and an enormous skylight. I shivered in the air-conditioning. “So, do you want to look around or what?”
“I thought I’d just ask that person,” I said, gesturing to the green-haired girl at the reception desk. Hayden snickered. I looked at her, eyebrows raised.
“What?” she asked. “You’re just going to walk up to her and go, hey, do you know about this addictive crochet wrap that killed a person who went to this rec center?”
“No,” I said, rolling my eyes, “I’m going to ask her about the rummage sale. And way to be discreet.”
“It’s not like I bellowed it from the rooftops,” said Hayden, lowering her voice. “You sound more suspicious when you’re whispering, you know.”
“I guess, but still, I think we should keep this quiet.”
“Sure.” Hayden gave me a push and I tripped over my own foot, stumbling up to the desk.
“Hello,” said the girl, whose name tag read Hi, my name’s Eloise. “How can I help you?”
“Hi,” I said. “I just wanted to ask if you could tell me about the rummage sale?” I pulled a piece of paper out of my back pocket. It was a bit crumpled from the car ride, but when I unfolded it the writing was still perfectly legible: it was a brochure about the annual sale.
“Sure!” said Eloise, adjusting her textbook hipster glasses. “Well, it took place two months ago, so you’ve got a bit of a wait for the next one. Did you want to donate something?”
“No,” I said. “Um, I have an…aunt who goes here, and she was telling me about it.” So lame. But Eloise didn’t bat an eye. Of course, there was nothing wrong with asking about the sale, but I didn’t know how to work in the Briars and Roses Shawl without sounding weird.
“Yes, it is pretty popular,” said Eloise. “It started when LCC first opened, about, oh, thirty years ago, and it’s just taken off from there. Have you been?”
“Have you been to the rummage sale?” Eloise twirled a strand of hair around her finger, unconsciously it seemed.
“No, I haven’t.” How to bring up the wrap? “Um.”
“Well, do you want to sign up for any classes while you’re here?” She kept the smile plastered on her face, but I could guess what she was thinking: What does this girl want?
An opening! “Yeah, actually, I was wondering if you had any yarn classes here?”
“Yarn classes.” Eloise turned her gaze down to her computer and I heard her typing. “Like fiber arts?” I nodded. “Yes, actually, we have a beginning knitting class, beginning crochet, spinning, weaving, and – ”
“Great!” I said, bringing my hand up for a thumbs-up and slamming it on the underside of the counter. Right on my bandaged finger. I bit back a shriek and forced a smile. “Actually, I’m more interested in thread crochet. Do you happen to have any classes about that?”
“Thread crochet? Hmm. I don’t think so.” The typing sounds resumed. While she was occupied, I dug in my bag and pulled out the Briars and Roses Shawl, which I set carefully on the counter.
Eloise looked up at the clanking sound from the crochet hook, and laughed. That was not what I’d expected. “Are you sure you haven’t been to our rummage sale?” she asked. I nodded, puzzled. “Because I know for a fact that this shawl was for sale there.”
My heart leapt – now we were getting somewhere! Not only did Irene Baker attend LCC, but it appeared that she’d purchased this wrap from their sale. I couldn’t wait to tell Hayden, who would probably say ‘I told you so.’ “Really?”
“Yes! We have a big yarn selection, but this was on top. I remember because of the color – that’s my favorite pink.”
“That’s nice,” I managed. “Do you know who donated this?” In an effort to not appear too nosy, I added, “I’m having some trouble with the pattern, and I’d love to ask for help.”
“I don’t know,” she said. “I’m sorry.”
What could I say now? I was saved from concocting a reply when Eloise said, “I have an idea, though. You could post something on our bulletin board, over there.” She pointed. A large, steel-gray bulletin board was tacked on the wall, and it was filled with notices, advertisements, and various papers. “It’s free.”
“Thank you!” I smiled at her. “You’ve been so helpful. I’ll do that.”
“No problem,” she said, and turned her attention back to her computer.
I scooped the wrap back into my bag, walked back to Hayden and sat next to her on the couch, which was actually quite comfortable. I would have to sign up for some classes at the community center. “Any information?” she asked.
I told her what I’d learned. She leaned her head back against the couch and thought for a minute. “So what are you going to put on the board? ‘Young Crocheter Seeks Previous Owner of Magic Obsessive Crochet Wrap’?”
“No.” My hand found its way into the bag, where I fiddled with the shawl, feeling the threads slide against each other.
“‘To The Owner of That Weird Pink Crochet Shawl Thing: Attention, I Need Your Help! I am Obsessed With This Thing!'”
“You’re not helping.” I pulled the shawl out and arranged it on my lap. I might as well crochet a little while I was waiting, I mused, until I figured out what to write. As I made the stitch, the hook brushed my injured finger and I bit my lip.
“What’d you do to your finger?” asked Hayden, glancing over at it. “Pick your fingernails again?”
“Yeah,” I said, the first time I’d ever lied to my sister (second, actually – there was the time that I dropped her toothbrush in the toilet and didn’t tell her for two weeks, then denied all evidence. But I was only eight.)
She made an indistinct grunt, and I could tell she was thinking. That was fine with me. It gave me more time to crochet. My right fingers were getting blistered from holding the tiny hook, and as I finished the row one of the blisters burst. I quickly tucked the finger under my other hand, hiding it from Hayden. Blood seeped out, and I fumbled in my bag for a Band-Aid, thankful I’d had the foresight to bring them. I had a feeling I’d go through quite a few more Band-Aids before (and if) I finished the wrap.
After I bandaged up my finger, I went back to crocheting, and Hayden walked off. Fifteen minutes (and two Band-Aids) later, she appeared with a typed sign, which she held up in front of me:
Attention, All Rummage Sale Participants!
I bought a pink crochet shawl from this sale, and I’m having trouble with the pattern!
Would the donor please email me so we can discuss where I went wrong?
REWARD of $20 if you help me make sense of this thing!
Contact Emma Perez: firstname.lastname@example.org
We hung it on the bulletin board next to some ‘Lost Dog’ and ‘Piano Lessons’ posters.
Then we drove home – more accurately, Hayden drove, and I sat in the passenger seat frantically crocheting. Hayden looked at me but didn’t say anything, and we rode home in silence.
As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions! Since this is a first draft, there will probably be a lot of discrepancies in the storyline; if you point them out I will fix them. Thanks Mom for pointing one out last time! 😉
After I post all the segments I’ll edit it and…I don’t know what I’ll do with it, probably upload a PDF for y’all. I’m open to suggestions.
Anyway, that’s all for today; have a nice Saturday!