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fiction


whacked it with his electronic tracking wand. As October progressed, Annie and Robert made plans for their Halloween party. One afternoon came a knock at the door, but instead of the expected deliveryman, there stood a Santa Barbara sheriff’s deputy. It seemed that Mr. Friendly was missing, and his orange delivery van had been found idling at the end of Annie and Robert’s long driveway. Their frequent visitor had vanished from


After a few moments, Annie heard her husband’s pained voice shouting ̶ no, beseeching her to come quickly. When she arrived, she was astounded by what he had illuminated. There,


SINCE SHE AND HER HUSBAND HAD ONLY BEEN MARRIED WEEKS


BEFORE AT LIONS CLUB PARK, WEDDING GIFTS WERE STILL ARRIVING. Toro Canyon, along with his sour disposition. The mystery was never far from Annie’s thoughts. Soon, however, a genuinely friendly deliverywoman, who also happened to like ceramics, took up the route.


At last, it was the evening of their Halloween party and there was a cold bite to the black night. The newlyweds had decorated the interior of their home with pumpkins and Indian corn bought from the fields and nurseries along Via Real. Annie asked Robert to fill the fireplace and he reluctantly grabbed his coat and largest flashlight and went down to the woodpile near the creek.


spanning the lower branches of the large pine tree to the very base of the woodpile, was the largest spider web she had ever seen.


However, instead of moths hanging from it, there were three small, brown packages held in mid-air, each with their orange Global Air Express labels still affixed to them. At last, they had found their missing wedding gifts.


As they stared in amazement, their eyes caught a glinting off another small object captured by the sturdy filaments.


“Look, Annie, look!” cried Robert. And there, clutched firmly by the spider web, was a laminated identification badge which read: “Arthur Friendly, Customer Service Representative, Global Air Express.”


“Isn’t that odd?” she thought. “Isn’t that very odd?” 


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