The Old Man Magnet

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AMOS BRUCKFORD IS THE retired President and CEO of a large, multinational biotech firm headquartered in Seattle, Washington. He had settled into a life that no longer included work or most of his friends from work; his firm had been bought, then moved to another city. As he took stock of his life, his mind wandered to his ex-wife who divorced him years ago, and his son, estranged and no longer in contact. He was at a point in his life where he was reassessing his past and what little was left of his future; he was sixty-eight and not getting any younger.

As he was ruminating on his target destination, as the summer was drawing to a close, he went for his daily walk along the bay promenade in the downtown area, and noticed, perhaps not for the first time, a young girl, maybe in her mid-teens, sitting on a park bench, her hat out beside her to catch coins from the passersby, her “clients” who passed by every morning going from home or the bus stop to their place of work. The location was excellent and had no other panhandlers as competition.

Amos would occasionally drip some loose pocket change in her hat, say hello, then move on. She was a street kid, that was clear, but as he looked more closely at her, and past her level of personal hygiene, he noticed for the first time just how young she was. He wondered what a young lady, a child, was doing on the streets when she should be in school. He passed by for days, then decided to investigate.

He approached her, sat down and said hello. He had no idea why, but somehow he sensed she was in trouble. Soon enough she would need his help.

She and Mari.

The Old Man is a story of love, patience and one man’s search to find redemption.

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