Marge’s hands patted her pockets frantically, digging out old receipts, her money folded onto itself, keys, remains of gum wrappers, a paper clip, a rubber band, some spare change and lint. It’s not here, it’s not here, kept going through her mind. Papa’s watch is gone. I lost it. A small screech was emitted from her. She was only down the street from her flat, so she left all of her groceries in the middle of the aisle at the Market, oranges and soup cans rolling, and fled back to her place. She passed by Mrs. Johanson walking Charles de Gaulle, and didn’t pat him on the head as she usually did; her feet took her swiftly home. As she ran, her eyes scanned the streets, looking for any glimmer of silver, any trace that her father’s pocket watch was not gone forever. But nothing caught her eye and the knot in the pit of her stomach, (or was it the stitch in her side?), turned to nausea as she took the steps up to her flat and avoided thinking about thought about what would happen if she couldn’t find the timepiece. The watch had to be here. It would be here. Anxiously waiting for the lift, her feet danced up and down, her tan flats making quiet noises on the marble floor. Pat pat pat. The lift, taking too long, was left behind, as Marge hurled herself up the stairs. It was only five flights after all.
Just as she reached the fourth flight, her mouth dry with fear that the one thing left of her father would be gone forever, she turned the corner up to the next flight and smashed right into her neighbor. Though she was about to sprint up the last flight of stairs, he grabbed her wrist and gently pulled her back. She saw that he had the chain of her father’s watch dangling between his fingers. He grinned impetuously; one eyebrow slanted up. Marge tried to snatch the watch from him. The neighbor pushed his wire-rim glasses up the bridge of his nose. Marge tried again to take the watch. The neighbor tapped his cheek. Marge rolled her eyes, though a kiss was a small price to pay for something so priceless to her, and pecked him on the cheek. The neighbor carefully handed Marge her father’s watch. He passed her on the stairs and she didn’t catch his smile as she sat down, cradling the watch in her hands. Papa, she thought.