Fool's Gold

Bill was surprised to see the glint of reflected sunlight amongst the coarse gravel on the roadside, he stepped back and bent down to pick up what looked like a chunk of gold. It turned out to be a crudely formed figurine, shaped like an oversized gummi bear, about two and a half inches in height and the thickness of his thumb, it was partially hollow but still fairly heavy.

Was this his lucky day or what? It must have weighed at least four ounces, and for someone on a tight budget who had recently started an advanced jewellery making course at night school this was a godsend. He realised that this much gold was worth nearly four thousand dollars and must belong to someone but it sure seemed like a case of finders keepers.

As he walked home he visualised the wonderful bracelet he could fashion for his girlfriend, and there would still be plenty left over for a few rings as well. He dreamed of asking Cindy to marry him one day when he had a few dollars to match her savings. Engagement and wedding rings would be a small start in the right direction.

It didn’t take long to chop the precious metal into suitable sized pieces for his purpose, he began hammering them into elongated strips which he would then weave into an exquisite gold braid.

As he worked late into the night he was only vaguely aware of the radio that had been on all evening, however the pips before the news each hour reminded him of the time. At eleven PM he caught the news headlines:

“Police have recovered most of the Inca artefacts stolen from the Yale Peabody Museum last night. A two and a half inch high gold figurine has still not been found, it has been described as looking a bit like a big gummi bear. The four thousand year old relics are the oldest of this type ever found in the Americas. The museum is offering a one hundred thousand dollar reward for the safe return of the figurine…………”

© Matthew Penfold 2009

Currently unavailable for purchase

For Twisted Tales Star Twister 50
Prompt = “Precious metal”
Word Count = 349



ttst50, precious metal, fools gold, matt penfold


  • Mel Brackstone
    Mel Brackstoneabout 5 years ago

    Oh you’re good :)))

  • Thanks Mel, I always appreciate your visits and comments :-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • sandraellen
    sandraellenabout 5 years ago

    Matt…..a wonderful story, if I was at all cynical, I would ‘tut tut’ Bill for not handing that icon in…….But i ain’t, so I won’t ……..nice to read you again :)
    sandra x

  • LOL, not cynical hu? Thanks S&ra glad you like it :-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • Jeannette Sheehy
    Jeannette Sheehyabout 5 years ago

    haha – “looking a bit like a big gummi bear”. That tickled me for some reason. Great twist! :)

  • Actually Jeannette you would have appreciated the original version where it looked like a big “jelly baby” but a google search told me that Americans don’t have jelly babies so I changed it to something that everybody knows. Thanks :-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • janniev
    jannievabout 5 years ago

    I’ll bet he kicked himself good and hard! Lovely read, it had me wondering.

  • I reckon he would have felt sick LOL. Thanks so much Jan, I’m glad you enjoyed it :-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • Arcadia Tempest
    Arcadia Tempestabout 5 years ago
    Good to see you back in a good twisting groove again. I was so cringing for him when your mean twist blurted out of the radio at him! Great read indeed…. ;)) X
  • Thanks KarenSue, yes the twist is a bit mean but then again he didn’t cut his wife’s head off………… ;-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • Solar Zorra
    Solar Zorraabout 5 years ago

    So I see chopping up ancient gummy bears is okay. ;) Really, great story, so glad to see you back. :)SZ

  • Hey, I never said it was OK ;-) Thanks for that Solar, it’s good to be back among friends :-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • Erika .
    Erika .about 5 years ago

    aw hahahaha! Made me laugh! Nice twist Matt! :DD

  • Hi Erika, good to know it gave you a laugh, thanks so much :-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • Alison Pearce
    Alison Pearceabout 5 years ago

    Excellent twist!! You had me totally engrossed throughout with your vivid descriptive prose!

  • Thank you so much Alison, I’m really glad you liked it, “engrossed” is always good :-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • filfil
    filfilabout 5 years ago

    Aw man! poor guy! But at least you got lucky with this amazingly written story. Terrific job! Abosolutely terrific!

  • Thanks filfil, I’m pleased that you enjoyed this so much, thanks for taking the time to read it, much appreciated :-)

    – Matt Penfold

  • Jeannette Sheehy
    Jeannette Sheehyabout 5 years ago

    gummi bear, jelly baby…and being a Brit living in the USA, I appreciate the qualities of both! ;)

  • I figured you were worldly when it came to gummi bears and jelly babies Jeannette ;-)

    – Matt Penfold

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