The Old Man - Shreya Sachdev
73 years have passed, but he continues everyday to write in the diary his father had given him as a little boy. He can sit for hours on his creaky, anachronistic, antique chair in his little old apartment to write about the most extraordinary and magnificent events. He looks out his stained window and describes the postman delivering the mail in a disconsolate and demoralized manner or the birds chirping and warbling on a bright, ebullient and effervescent afternoon. Sometimes he discusses how his son had run away from home after one vacuous argument he had with him five years ago and how he would lie to other people and talk about how jubilant and ecstatic he was that he did not try to stop his son, as well as how his son was nothing but a worthless, ignominious and discreditable piece of junk. Even though, secretly, he still kept all his family photos, videos and albums and would never let anybody know that he was watching the video of his sons first birthday party each midnight of each day, sniffling and tearing up as each second of the video passed by.
That's why when he came into his apartment later that night. He was horrified, petrified and completely outraged by the realization that he had been robbed. He ignored the cracked walls, the broken bed, the ruptured paintings, the shattered dresser and rather than calling the police, he treaded faster than he thought he could to his wooden bedside drawer. The moment he reached, he forcefully tugged the drawer open hoping to find the one precious object he knew he could not live without.
His diary was gone.
He did not have a clue who could have possibly taken his diary, but he was determined and adamant to get it back. Just as he was about to pick up the phone to call the cops, he stepped on a piece of paper. He crumpled down to pick it up despite the aching and throbbing pain his back felt. His hands trembled and vibrated with fear and consternation as his eyes read what was written on the note.
You know what I want. I want my share of the kidnapping we agreed on 50 years ago. I told you that I would be back. You have 72 hours to get back to me the $10,000, we agreed upon. Once you have the money, meet me on Fifth Avenue, facing the Elm Gardens on the third day at midnight. All the hours you lose are an hour that I snatch a page from this cursed diary of yours. -H
He knew who had taken his diary.