Heritage Found, a Short Story
Short Story by Tamara Wilhite
Where was it? Where was the heirloom locket? She hadn't meant to be here, off the beaten path. She hadn't meant to go down a nearly over-grown path leading away from the cemetery.
Ryssa stopped, trying not to cry. Misted eyes would make it harder to look for the ring. The locket was all she had left of her family. Both of her parents had died in the car crash, her older sister to random violence ...
She was beginning to regret taking a semester off from college to trace her roots. The locket had been in her maternal line for five generations. A line of which she was the last survivor, after a painful series of unexpected events. She had to find the ring. Where was it?
Her retracing of her steps to the car and back showed nothing. She wandered between the graves, but there was nothing but dry, brown grass. She spilled her purse on the ground, just in case. No, it hadn’t fallen in the purse while grabbing a camera.
She walked the rest of the cemetery again, just in case. In any case, the last link to her ancestry was gone, any past beyond her own memories, was lost.
She looked up and saw an elderly woman dressed in an elegant Prussian blue dress, something that would have fit in if part of a picture of Tsarist Russia. The woman gestured toward a copse of evergreens which Ryssa had not noticed before. Ryssa walked slowly towards it, then stepped in.
Her eyes took a moment to adjust to the shadows. She saw a gravestone marked "Ryssa Valdoon". It was her maternal grandmother's grave! And above it, beside an overgrown grave, was her locket.