The Treasure Hunt

By Andrew Looney

The map was crude, but they were able to follow it to the right location, a large boulder between two oak trees.

The men brought out their shovels and began digging. The map said to dig down seven feet, though it turned out to be more like eight. At last the shovels struck something solid. They worked even harder, until the chest was completely uncovered.

The chest was quite large, and it took all of their strength to raise it up out of the hole. It was of a thick, strong wood, stained black by the passage of time. The brass fittings were badly tarnished. The men smashed off the lock, lifted the lid... and gasped in awe.

The treasure chest was filled to overflowing with bright gold coins. The men figured they were rich beyond comprehension. Visions filled their heads, visions of mansions, automobiles, yachts, women.

However, when they looked more closely at the coins, their faces fell, slowly at first, then with gathering speed, until the men collapsed onto the dirt, and wept.

The gold coins were, in fact, chocolate coins wrapped in gold foil.

Worse still, the chocolate was stale.

This story appears in My Secret World. Copyright © 1985 by Andrew Looney.

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