During Boy’s Birthday Party, Homeless Man Appears with Locket as Gift and Boy Recognizes It – Story of the Day
A boy receives an unexpected present from a homeless man on his fifteenth birthday and it turns his entire life upside down, including everything he thought he knew about himself.
Evan Masters never understood why his father disliked him so much. He was fourteen, but he'd known from the time he could barely walk that daddy didn't like to touch him.
His dad never played with him, and when he talked to him, his voice was cold, and he never ever said Evan's name. He wasn't like that with Evan's little brother and sister, not at all. He was kind and attentive and adoring.
Evan knew that there had to be something wrong with HIM or his dad would love him. He was lucky that his mom was so great. She almost made up for his dad's coldness. Almost.
Evan never imagined that his birthday party would turn his life upside-down. | Source: Unsplash
Evan sometimes had the feeling Christine Masters was unhappy. His mom would look off into the distance with the saddest look on her face. But when he asked her what was wrong, she would smile and say that everything was okay. Once, he even tried to talk to his father, and Jacob Masters just listened to Evan's stammering attempt at getting through to him and just walked away.
There is power in truth.
When Evan spoke to Christine about Jacob's dislike for him, his mother just hugged him very tight and said, "Baby, you are so loved! Please, please know that!"
When Evan turned fifteen, his life turned upside down, but it really all started the day before. He was coming home from school when he saw a homeless man walking along his road.
Evan couldn't understand why his father didn't love him. | Source: Unsplash
He was very surprised. His was a privileged neighborhood and vagrants were rare. Whatever Jacob's failures as a father, he was a brilliant businessman and kept his family in the lap of luxury.
Ahead of him were two of his neighbors who also happened to be schoolmates, Greg and Halston. The two boys were standing in front of the homeless man, barring his path and taunting him.
"Hey there, trash-man!" Greg said, giving the homeless man a push. "We don't let people into this neighborhood unless they have a bath and a shave!"
The man held up his hands. "Please," he said. "I don't want any trouble, I'm just walking through..."
Jacob loved his younger children. | Source: Unsplash
Halston stepped forward and gave the man a harder shove. "You don't want trouble but you found it!" he yelled. "We don't want your kind stinking up our street!"
Evan couldn't stand it anymore and stepped forward. "Stop it," he said. "Let this man go!"
Greg and Halston looked at Evan, and Greg sneered. "What are you going to do? Invite him to your birthday party tomorrow? You love dirt?"
"Leave him," Evan repeated, and he dropped his backpack and balled up his fists. Greg and Halston could see he was serious, and Evan wasn't someone they wanted to tangle with. He was a strong boy and a top athlete, not a starved homeless man.
Evan saw a homeless man in his street. | Source: Unsplash
Cursing at the man and at Evan, the two boys ran off. Evan turned to the man and asked, "Are you alright?"
The man nodded. "Yes," he said. "Thank you for your help. Those boys...All I wanted was to find an old friend's address..."
"Would you like a glass of water?" Evan asked the man.
"No, no!" he cried. "I'm alright. You are a kind boy! What is your name?"
Evan smiled and stuck out his hand to shake the homeless man's. "I'm Evan Masters. What's yours?"
Two of Evan's school colleagues were bullying the homeless man. | Source: Pexels
"Masters?" the man asked. "Evan Masters, you can call me Max."
Evan went home and every thought of the homeless man fled his mind. His mom was busy preparing everything for his birthday party and his father was grumbling that she was late making dinner.
Jacob just hated it when Christine made a fuss of Evan and Evan knew that his birthday party would be a nightmare. Jacob would find a way to spoil it for him -- he always did. Evan went up to his room and stayed away from the fuss.
The next day, he couldn't escape. It WAS his birthday, after all, his fifteenth birthday. "Three more years and I go to college," he told himself. "And the nightmare will be over."
The homeless man gave Evan a locket. | Source: Unsplash
In the middle of the afternoon, the guests started arriving. They were mostly Jacob's friends and their kids, and very few of Evan's friends. It was almost as if the party was for his little brother and sister.
When the doorbell rang, Jacob said, "Evan, open the door! It's probably the magician I hired for your brother and sister!"
Evan couldn't believe it, but he went to the door and opened it. The homeless man was standing there. "Hi," he said. "Yesterday those boys said it was your birthday, so I brought you a present."
He opened his hand and offered Evan a pretty gold locket on a chain. Evan picked it up. "Look, he said hesitantly. "It's very pretty but I can't accept it..." He started handing the locket back when the catch on the side opened and he saw the photo inside.
Inside the locket was a photo of his mother and the homeless man. | Source: Unsplash
It was his mom in a wedding dress, and she was standing next to a younger version of the homeless man! Evan gasped. "Who are you?" he cried, then he yelled, "MOM! MOM! Come here!"
Something in his voice must have transmitted his urgency because Christine ran to the door. When she saw the homeless man, her knees nearly gave way. "Peter?" she cried. "Peter is that you?"
The man stepped forward and his face lit up. Suddenly, he looked exactly like the man in the photo. "Chrissy," he whispered. "I've been looking for you, trying to remember...I came to Jacob's house...Are you here for his son's birthday party?"
Evan's mother was shocked when she saw the homeless man. | Source: Unsplash
Christine was in tears and she wrapped her arms around Peter and sobbed. That was what Jacob saw when he came to the door to find out what was taking so long.
Christine was deadly pale. "Jacob, you told me Peter drowned on that fishing trip! You told me he was dead!"
Jacob hunched his shoulders and he couldn't look his wife in the eye. "He fell out, he hit his head on a tree trunk..." he said. "When he woke up he couldn't remember his own name...I've always loved you, Christine, I thought it was my chance. I didn't hurt him. I drove him to a hospital 600 miles away and left him there. I didn't hurt him..."
Jacob admitted he lied to Christine about Peter's death. | Source: Unsplash
"You broke my heart!" Christine cried. "Evan grew up without his father, and Peter has suffered God knows what!"
"I'm still your husband!" Jacob said angrily. "I'm the father of your children!"
Christine shook her head. "You married me knowing my husband was still alive and that makes you a bigamist!"
"You go and live with your homeless husband and your brat under the bridge!" screamed Jacob. "You have NOTHING!"
Christine smiled. "You are wrong," she said calmly. "I never sold our old house. We have a home, and I'd rather be poor with him than live with you in the lap of luxury. Tomorrow I'm coming back for the children!"
Evan finally had the happy family he dreamed of. | Source: Unsplash
The next day, Christine took her little son and daughter home and explained everything as best she could. Peter was slowly remembering his old life and getting his strength back.
As for Jacob, his lawyers offered Peter and Christine a huge compensation to avoid criminal charges and they used the money to start a new life with their three children whom Peter loves equally.
What can we learn from this story?
- There is power in truth. Jacob lied to Christine, but the truth was revealed, and he lost everything he'd plotted to get.
- Treat every human being with respect. Evan was kind and respectful to the homeless man without even realizing he was his father.
Share this story with your friends. It might brighten their day and inspire them.
If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about a woman who is shocked when she sees a homeless stranger wearing the pendant she'd buried with her fiancé after a fatal car crash.
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