Finders Keepers

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John McHarg 

Finders Keepers

It was just lying there, underneath the table, Naomi had spotted it while clearing up, It was 1.30am and she had had a long hard shift. An iPhone 5, brand new, she couldn’t believe her luck. On her meagre wages there was no way she could afford one of these but now here it was, hers for the taking, so she took it “Finders keepers” she mouthed in delight.

She arrived home at 2.10am and took the newly acquired technological marvel from her handbag feeling very pleased with herself. It wasn’t locked, “Bonus, How stupid” she thought and immediately went to the phones pictures. There she entered into the private moments of another human, friends, family, pets, holidays, parties, it was all there and for the next 2 hours she immersed and intruded herself into the life unfolding from the phone of Nicola Price, 32, a nurse. The phone rang at 4.23am, Naomi stared at the screen, it read Dad Mobile, she ignored it, it rang again, then again and a further three times, all ignored. Finally a text, it read “Darling please answer your phone. We haven’t heard from you in days. We are so worried. We love you”. It took 20 minutes before she could muster up the courage to call Dad mobile. “Oh honey I’m so relieved, are you ok, where you have been?”

“I’m not Nicola, I found her phone earlier in the café I work in”

Dad was desperate “Where did you find it? What café, when?” Dads question were in rapid succession, too quick for Naomi to answer. “Hold on, what’s up? Is your daughter in danger?”

“Who are you?  You said you found Nicolas phone in the café you work in? Where”

“It’s the bay tree café on high street in Fenham” Naomi was now equally concerned.

“I know it” dad answered “We live just about 2 miles away, are you there now?”

“No, I’m home “

“Look we need to look at the phone and go to the police to report her missing, is there somewhere we could meet to get the phone back, We really need it” Dads voice was even more urgent “ “Yes of course,  I can get you outside the café, it’ll take me 5 minutes , I’ll leave straight away”. Naomi didn’t even notice the short walk, more of a run to get to the café. It was almost 5am now and her mind was racing with a multitude of scenarios concerning Nicola, had she been abducted? Was she suicidal “I wish I had never found this bloody phone “Naomi repeated over and over.7 more minutes passed, a few cars drove by, finally a silver blue Audi pulled up, A man stepped out from the passenger seat and Naomi stepped cautiously  towards him, “Naomi?” he asked.

“Yes that’s me”  he was followed immediately from the driver’s side by Nicola Price, 32, a nurse who held her hand up in Naomi’s direction “My phone!”

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