Logan Pryce Makes a Mess
THE FIX-IT SHOP
Logan Pryce picked up a hammer and pounded the tin cup.
“The Fox-Away is going to be my best invention ever,” he told Skeeter. Skeeter barked and wagged his honey-colored tail. He always agreed with everything Logan said.
Logan leaned closer to the oil lamp and continued hammering.
Nearby, the horses munched on their oats and paid no attention. The cows did the same with their hay. The farm animals were well used to Logan and his Fix-It Shop.
The Fix-It Shop was where Logan
mended broken things. Sometimes, he even recycled them into new things, like the Fox-Away.
The Fix-It Shop took up an entire stall in the corner of the barn. Logan’s worktable was a wooden
board standing on two steady sawhorses. His chair was a blue wooden barrel with the words DICKINSON’S WITCH HAZEL stamped on it.
Logan had lots of raw materials to tinker with. China cups without
handles. Mismatched buttons. A cracked butter churn. A cuckoo clock that no longer told the time. The objects spilled out of crates and scattered across the floor.
He had many tools, too. His favorite was a silver pocketknife
engraved with a maple leaf design. His father had bought it for him at Mayberry’s General Store.
The barn doors creaked open. A breeze whooshed in, smelling of earth and
early spring. The oil lamp flickered for a moment and then grew still. A cat skittered out from behind one haystack and into another.
“Logan!” His sister Tess stood in the deep shadow of the doorway. “Ma says you need to come in for supper!”
Tess was nine, a year older than Logan. She had hazel eyes and two long brown braids that hung down her shoulders.
“Be there in a minute,” said Logan as he reached for a messy ball of twine.
“I think she and Pa want to talk to us.” Tess sounded worried.
“I don’t know. It sounded really important, so let’s get going!”
Logan scooped up the twine and the tin cup and stuffed them into a gunnysack. He added some other items and blew out the lamp.
He wondered why Ma and Pa wanted to talk to them. Was it about school? Or their chores? Logan had knocked over a bucket of fresh milk this morning. But he’d had a good excuse. The bucket had been in the way as he chased a couple of hens that had escaped from the henhouse.
Outside, the sky was big and pink with twilight, and the ground was soft and wet. Logan’s boots made squishy noises and splattered mud as he walked. Tess stepped more carefully. Skeeter dashed off to chase a hare into a bush.
“That’s odd. Pa hasn’t plowed yet,” said Tess as they passed the fields.
Logan glanced around. Tess was right. It was March, and the land should be ready for planting wheat. Instead, it was dotted with patches
of snow. Crows pecked at mounds of dirt and weeds.
Is there something wrong with Pa? Logan wondered.