A short story by David Schell
What you are about to read is entirely fictitious. Okay, not entirely. The parts that are historical are historical. The parts that aren’t obviously biblical are entirely made up.
I heard this legend from a friend, who heard it from a friend, who claims he heard it from a monk friend of his, who heard it from an archbishop, who found it in a really old scroll that claimed to have been written by St. Augustine in some monastery in Turkey. I’m inclined to believe that this is a true story. I’ve taken a little artistic license with it, but the details remain the same.
Everyone knows that the Romans built roads. But hardly anyone remembers the Romans who actually built those roads. This particular Roman’s name was Claudius. No one really remembered how Claudius got on the road-building gang. Claudius barely remembered it himself. But that is hardly important. The soldiers watching over the diggers and making them work were tired, but they kept going through the early night.
Claudius was exhausted. He stopped for a breath, and one of the soldiers shook his head and started walking toward him with a whip. Then the soldier stopped. Froze, actually, one foot still in the air. Continue reading “The Five Spades of Christmas”