1 FRANKLINS DAY

1.1 TOBIN JACOBROWN

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The town watched the sun miraculously rise for the three hundred and third time that year, somehow in the exact same place as last time. There was an hour or two there when they were almost worried in that dark time, but there it was again, bright as ever. As all the people walked home they thanked the mayor and prayed it would never be dark again. Minutes later everyone had gone back to their jobs happy that their lives would never be interrupted again.

The town was small and they liked it that way. That way they could keep track of everyone who lived there. Everyone even knew the names of the street dogs. This was why Franklin had made such a stir.



Mr. Friendly the street sweeper had seen him first. He could feel the difference in the air that night as he stepped on to the streets with his mop, pail and brand new scrub brush. He didn’t like things that were different. But he began his job as usual, scrubbing until the sidewalks shone to heaven.

When he saw the scuffmarks he knew something was very wrong. He didn’t like changes. Changes meant he would have to change to accommodate them. He pretended to be dedicated to his work but his mind was elsewhere.

And then Mr. Friendly saw him. Well, Franklin saw Mr. Friendly first. He was crumpled into a corner like a discarded shoe rag, stinking of the sins of the city and reeking of misery and failure. Mr. Friendly recoiled from the disgusting lump, but he couldn’t look away. The freak accident of a man drew Mr. Friendly’s attention.

Franklin didn’t mind. He was used to disapproving stares and angry whispers. He stared back, but not with vengeance but with an eternal sadness that couldn’t be shaken. After a long hanging minute Mr. Friendly tore himself away. He tried to keep working, but something was wrong.

It was no secret, â€"anybody with eyes could tell- for the first night in his career, Mr. Friendly stopped cleaning the streets.

The town was in an uproar. The gossips dealt out so many rumors their teeth hurt. Mothers were shushing their questioning children ten times as often as before. Men drank. George, the street dog, bit the butcher. Old Mrs. Mattchets house chose that very day to collapse on it self. People tripped, cars broke down, the town was in shambles. The gossips predicted dooms-day.

Their world was broken.

Franklin laughed a little. He slowly closed his eyes and let the screams rock him to sleep.



That night a meeting was held at town hall. The entire town -save the dogs- came. Even Mrs. Mattchet dragged her bruised self over. Everyone was yelling, everyone was packed in, everyone was tired. The mayor did everything save take off his shirt to get the attention of the swarm. But once he got it soon devolved to shouting again.

Through the night blame was soon passed until it reached Mr. Friendly. As Mr. Friendly somberly marched to the podium silence engulfed the crowd. Mr. Friendly spilled his story over them, and as soon as he finished the crowd began yelling again.

They called for punishment. They cried bloody murder. They couldn’t quell their rage. He didn’t have the right. Barbarously barging into their calm, pleasant lives and turning it all upside down. He didn’t have the right.



The mob broke out of Town hall late that night, but they were restless. Something had to be done. He didn’t have the right. A flurry of anger and fists flew through the town, and it would not stop until it had reached every alley. It would not stop until the problem was ended, until blood had been tasted. Anger would destroy all that night.



But they didn’t find their revenge. They only found the bricks and stones, as hard as they looked. They didn’t stop though. For many hours they thundered through the dark streets. And then they saw it.

At first it was only a faint lightness, but it grew. Brighter and brighter by the second. And by the time the first ray poked out over the hills everyone had stopped to stare at the marvel.

Once again the sun had risen.





Franklin barely looked back as he stumbled down the road to his next adventure. He smiled and chuckled a little. He knew his work was done therE.