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Castle of Wax

            There was a castle of wax. It sat on a shelf in the window to the young Candlemaker’s shop along with his many other magnificent creations. See, the young Candlemaker was no ordinary candlemaker. First of all, there were very few real candlemakers left in the world and most of them had tin hearts.
            The one thing he had that no one else had was a love. His love was no ordinary love because she was also his muse. The young Candlemaker discovered that, after spending an evening with her, telling her of his hopes and dream, candlemaking was like breathing to him.
            So every morning at a quarter to seven, he would wake up to begin his day and prepare the shop. The most important of his preperation was one, a good cup of tea like any gentleman should have, and two, a large vat of wax, which, if you are just anyone, would appear quite strange for you to have. Then, at a quarter to eight, the young Candlemaker’s love would arrive to help. They would make his castles, and mountains, and figurine animals until it was again a quarter to eight.
            This cycle continued for days until week, and weeks until months and he was soon making candles for emperors, and presidents, and dictators, many of whom appeared personally at his doorstep. The candlemaker‘s skill was so great, that he could imagine up anything. His renown never ceased to expand.
            The candlemaker, having a kind heart, refused to charge anything more than a reasonable price of a candle for his work. consequently, even the less fortunate found their way to his shop often to marvel and sometimes buy his wondrous inventions.
            One day, a less fortunate boy, who had been given a toy truck by a compassionate stranger the day before, entered the shop. The young Candlemaker had a habit of giving out little souvenirs to children like this, and did the same to the Boy with the truck. The Boy dropped the truck, and took the small candle, awed at how intricate it looked, and amazed that the Candlemaker would give him such a gift as if he were a king. The Boy vanished into the crowd,  leaving his toy truck behind and new ideas in mind.
            The Candlemaker’s exhaustion put him to bed immediately and he promised to clean the shop the next morning with his love.
            That next morning, when he was about to clean, he peered into the vat of wax to see fingers pointing to the ceiling. The toy truck was now across the room. The Candlemaker grabbed a hold of the fingers and a familiar figurine stood. His love was frozen in place by the scalding wax, her arm stretched eagerly, inviting a companion. She was dead.
            The king, the tyrant, and the poor only saw another masterpiece. The Candlemaker and his work slowly became less amazing until he was left in an empty shop that no one bothered themselves with; But if they had bothered, they would have found one last masterpiece.

Categories: Caleb, short story, story


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