The Can of Four Seasons

Submitted into Contest #103 in response to: Write about a character looking for a sign.... view prompt


Adventure Horror Sad

Rebecca gently ran her fingers through the ingredients in her cooking cabinet. She had been sent to Canterbury, England by her stepmother, Alyssa, to look for a sign of the all-mighty Can of Four Seasons. Rebecca was bemused and did not exactly know of its power, however; she always obeyed her stepmother. “You don’t want to mess with good ol’ Alyssa,” the neighbors would caution. Rebecca was never informed why, however; again she obeyed.

Rebecca strolled out. She was having a terrible day, and thought, A stroll outdoors might be nice. While she recapped what had happened today, she was unaware that she had passed a broken gate that showed a rusty old sign reading: CAUTION- Beware! Do not enter. Entirely ignoring the warning, Rebecca kicked at the dust. Sighing, she walked forward.

At first, it was normal. She could hear birds chirping and felt the winds blow. There was only one unusual feature about this setting, there were no residents at all. Not even one. Canterbury, which was filled with visitors from all over the universe, had missed this odd place. Rebecca was starting to wonder if she should turn back. 

Alyssa had worked for the Four Seasons Research Unit, known as the FSRU. All this time they had worked, and found no evidence of the Can of Four Seasons. Once Alyssa retired, she sent Rebecca to look for it. Convinced that it was in Canterbury, Rebecca searched all of Canterbury, and after five years she was still in Canterbury. However, Rebecca wasn’t in Canterbury to look for the Can of Four Seasons. She had given that up, because she hadn’t found anything. She just enjoyed daily life here. 

Moreover, Rebecca has no clue what the Can of Four Seasons really looked like, so that made it especially difficult. She had to look in every can she found.

Rebecca and Alyssa weren’t compatible at all. Once Rebecca’s biological father passed away, Alyssa started to ignore Rebecca, and sometimes even avoided her.

Rebecca was still wandering in the unusual setting when she was distracted by a sound… a rustling or burrowing sound. She used the concept her biological mother had taught her. Tip-toe, flip the bush, and rescue the critter. Or whatever it was. She reviewed the concept in her head. She flipped the bush, and found a beaver. “Beaver, huh,” she scratched her head confusingly. “Why is a beaver here--- OW!” The beaver cackled and whacked Rebecca in the head with its tail. Then, he jostled her to the ground and bit her. “Ouch! You little wicked--” Biting her lip, she limped forward, grasping her wound. The beaver followed her. “Go away!”

She jumped over an obstacle that was far too immense and high for the beaver. Then she inhaled in relief. Her wound was far from painful. Clenching her fist, she tried to prevent herself from screaming. 

All of a sudden, out of nowhere, a tractor zoomed towards her. She yelped, and jumped to the side. “YOU SHOULD GIVE PEDESTRIANS SOME RESPECT!” 

A piercing pound in her head interrupted the feud. Squeezing her eyes tightly, she collapsed to the ground. The last gesture she recognized was the tractor driver anxiously calling the ambulance. 

Rebecca blinked. She was in the hospital. The tractor driver’s worried face stood next to her. Rubbing her forehead, she sternly repeated, “You should give pedestrians some respect.” The tractor driver said nothing, he just nodded. The faint aroma of a hearty meal was inhaled by Rebecca. She immediately recognized the dish. 

“Vegetable soup!” she cheerfully exclaimed. “A what soup?” 

“Vegetable soup,” Rebecca explained. “My mother used to cook that for me all the time.” 

“Soup is served,” a nurse smiled, entering the room. “Looks like your friend has awakened.” Rebecca smiled back. “Thank you,” she hastily grabbed the spoon and slurped. Her beautiful face strained into a frown. “A bit bland,” she complained. “Maybe more tomatoes next time? Or celery?” The nurse nodded. “Of course, dear patient. Oh, and don’t forget to drink your beverage.” Rebecca stared at the berry smoothie on her tray. “Okay,” she replied softly. 

After finishing her meal, she questioned the driver what his name was. “James Davis, and you?”

“Rebecca Anderson. It’s very nice to meet you.”

After Rebecca left the hospital, she continued her mission of looking for the Can of Four Seasons. While she passed the local farm, she heard the voice of Farmer Brown’s young daughter, Sara.

“But, Father, I don’t want to go…” Sara’s tiny voice trailed off. WHIP! Cruel Farmer Brown slapped her daughter in the face. “I told you so, Sara. Go or experience deadly consequences!”

Rebecca slapped her hand over her mouth. What she just heard was unbelievable.  How could a father wish his daughter dead? she wondered.

Rebecca again recognized Sara’s voice. “Father, why should I go when Mother didn’t go,” Sara muttered. Hearing this made Rebecca more curious than ever. She leaned close to the wooden gate and eavesdropped. “Your mother should’ve gone. All females should have gone!” Rebecca realized what they had been debating. They were talking about the academy for only females. Not many people attended that academy, however; special treatment, and plus only very wealthy residents usually attended that school. Rebecca decided it wasn’t very proper to eavesdrop on others, so she left. However, surprisingly, an extremely bright light blinded Rebecca and she fell to the ground. Picking up a can with brightly coloured leaves on it, she realized that she had found it. “The Can of Four Seasons! The Can of Four Seasons! I found it!,” she celebrated. Sprinting fiercely towards her estate, her trembling hands slowly removed the cap. Then, WHOOSH! This wasn’t the Can of Four Seasons at all! It was an imposter. Now that the dark magic of the plague named Almendrian was released from it’s prison, it started swallowing everything in sight, taking Rebecca with it. “AAAH!!!” Hearing her cry, Alyssa appeared in front of Rebecca. However, it was one moment too late! Rebecca was dramatically sucked into the plague. “What’s going on-- Woah!” Without time to react, Alyssa was sucked into the plague too. Once the whole estate was swallowed, the plague grew and grew… Until it swallowed the whole universe, along with the solar system.

This is the tragedy of the Can of Four Seasons.

July 23, 2021 18:00

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