Lemonade Stand

October 8, 2010
By , Manhattan, KS
It had been a long hot summer in Smallville, a small college town in Kansas. Kids from middle school had come and gone all summer. August was turning out to be too hot to play outside in the afternoons. But there was a buzz of activity in town from college kids beginning to return to start fall session. All of my friends and I were broke by this time, having spent all of our birthday and Christmas money. I had been mowing grass all summer trying to make some extra money, but it was so hot that the grass wasn't growing much and I wasn't cutting it for folks every week like I had in the spring. One day my next-door neighbor, Millie Waters came over to see if anyone in the "Jones House", my house, was having any fun.
"Bobby, " she called out as she knocked at the door. "Anyone home?"
Millie was a nice enough girl, from a nice enough family, but I had always kept my distance from her, because it just wasn't cool to hang out with girls, up to now, and especially not girls that lived next door.
"Knock, Knock, anyone home," she said as she tried the doorbell.
It was obvious that she wasn't going to just go away easily. She obviously had been watching my house all day, and knew I was at home. So finally I went down and answered the door.
" What do you want," I asked in an uninterested voice. "Don't you have something else to do with your girl friends or something," I blurted out as I opened the door.
I had noticed at the end of school, that Millie was looking more and more like a teenager and less like the buck-toothed four-eyed dork that she had seemed in grade school. So I asked her again, a little bit nicer voice, "What's up?"
"Have you seen Nathan Teller lately," Millie asked. "Have you seen all the new clothes and his new bike? Where do you suppose he is getting all of his money, " she continued.
" I don't know, but I had been wondering the same thing," I replied.
Come to think of it, only last week I had seen Nathan leaving the Sporting Goods Store carrying a big bag of new baseball gear. And Nathan had never had a job, always staying home and practicing his nerdy violin.
"I think that something funny is going on at the lemonade stand that he has started on that vacant corner lot down at the end of the street next to his house, " Millie said gesturing that way. " I have been observing on and off these last several days, and there is really only one man that seems to give him much business," she continued.
"It would take a lot of 50 cent lemonades to add up to enough to buy all that he has bought this summer, and we all know his father is the tightest accountant in town, so it isn't coming from his allowance," I offered. "What do your think Millie?"
Mill just shrugged her shoulders, turned on her heals and rushed on back to her house. That night I couldn't sleep thinking about Nathan all of a sudden having all the new stuff that he somehow seemed to come by. So just before daybreak, I slipped out of the house and went next door and tapped at Millie's window. She came to the window, and didn't seem too startled at all, like she had been expecting me.
"Lets hide in the old garage that didn't get torn down on the vacant lot, and spy on Nathan tomorrow, by looking out the window," I whispered.
" Great idea she said," as she crawled out of the window with a bag of snacks already packed for the adventure. It was looking like Millie had much the same idea.
We both ended up falling asleep in the garage behind some boxes of books, when all of a sudden we awoke to sun streaming in the windows and someone banging around on an old workbench at the other end of the garage. The door opened and a tall man exited and walked straight up to Nathan's Lemonade stand, bought a lemonade, paid with a $20 bill and drove away. We were both flabbergasted. We couldn't believe our eyes. A $20 bill for a 50 cent lemonade? No wonder Nathan had all new stuff and lots of it. But what could be the story of this strange man that had first come into the old garage?
We both ran out and confronted Nathan, after the man had left. Millie grilled Nathan about having seen this man come every day, and not really many other customers. I asked why would anyone pay $20 for a 50 cent lemonade, and why Nathan hadn't let us in on the business if we were all friends and the business was so lucrative? After all, we had both always helped Nathan with his chemistry that he wasn't very good at.
Nathan then told us that the man had recently been released from prison, and that he had stashed money in the garage that he had robbed from a bank many years before, and that he was paying Nathan to keep quiet, or he was going to do something bad to his family. Nathan begged us not to tell anyone. Nathan said he was also not supposed to let anyone come around the garage so it wouldn't get torn down before the summer was over, and until he got all of his money out.
Thank goodness the summer was just about over, and the visit by the stranger that morning was his last. All the kids at the start of school liked Nathan's new stuff, and thought he had gotten to be less nerdy over the summer. They all thought it had come from hard work at the lemonade stand. Nathan's secret is forever safe with us.

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GravityMcFalls said...
May 24, 2011 at 10:07 am

Wow. That's a really good story. < ^.^ >

I liked it.

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