A single mom finally saved enough money to buy an old house. But after removing the old rug, she discovered a secret trap door and couldn’t have imagined what she would discover inside.
Emma moved in with her parents when her husband of ten years kicked her out and asked for a divorce. “I’m in love with someone else, and you need to leave,” he told her.
“What about our kids? Where will we go?” Emma asked, desperate.
“I don’t care. I never wanted them anyway. Leave!” he continued coldly.
Emma didn’t have a choice. The house was in his name and most of the money. Luckily, her parents stepped in and helped her get settled in their house.
“This won’t be for long, Mom. I’ll work and save for a new place,” Emma told her mother.
“Don’t worry, sweetheart. My grandkids and you will always be welcome in this house,” she assured Emma. But Emma didn’t want to take advantage. Her kids could be loud, and her parents needed peace in their home.
She used to be a stay-at-home mom because that’s what her husband wanted. But Emma called a friend and got a job immediately. It wasn’t a great salary, but she had been out of the workforce for a long time, so it was better than nothing.
After a few months, she and her mom started searching for cheaper homes. She discovered an old house for a great price, but apparently, no one wanted to buy it because it needed serious repairs. “Are you sure this is the house you want?” her mom asked.
“I think it’s perfect, Mom. It’s big enough for the family, and I’ll repair it slowly. There’s no way I could afford a house like this one if it weren’t in such shape. I’ll be buying it directly from the bank. Apparently, the old owner died, and the bank repossessed it,” Emma explained.
So, she placed an offer and got the house. They moved in, and Emma’s mom continued to help take care of the kids while she worked. Emma and her father started renovating the house. It was a slow process, but they were getting through faster than she expected.
They decided that the old carpet needed to be replaced. But after removing a section of it in the master bedroom, Emma discovered a trap door. “What could it be?” she wondered out loud.
“I don’t know, Em. It could be a safe or a basement,” her dad suggested.
“No one said anything about a basement in this house,” Emma added. Hesitantly, they opened the door and discovered a staircase.
“See? It has to be a basement,” her dad continued. “Let’s check it out.”
“I don’t know. This is usually when things go bad in scary movies,” Emma whispered.
“Oh, please, Emma. Stop with that nonsense. Let’s go,” her father scoffed.
She followed him down to the basement with a flashlight. Her dad got the only light bulb down there working, and they discovered canvases covered under blankets.
“Are these…paintings?” Emma asked more to herself.
“The old owner must have left them here,” her dad said. “You might need to call the bank to inquire about it.”
Emma followed her dad’s advice, but the bank said she was now the legal owner of whatever she found in that house. The paintings were beautiful. She even brought some up and hung them around the house.
But they were so many so she thought of selling a few for some profit. She took one for an appraisal at the local art gallery. “This painting is exquisite!” the expert named Nick said. “Based on the signature, they belonged to André Mossé.”
“Who is that?” Emma asked.
“He was a rising artist in Paris but only showed a few of his paintings before he went underground. No one knew what happened. Some believed he came to America and died here. I guess that’s true,” Nick explained.
“Are they valuable?” Emma wondered.
“I believe so. I’ll have to check with my colleagues. But you say you have several of these at home?” he asked her.
“I must have at least 20 paintings or so,” Emma replied.
“Ma’am. You’re sitting on a gold mine,” the expert marveled. Emma invited him to his house to see some of the other paintings, and his initial assessment was correct. They were worth a fortune. So Emma sold a few to his art gallery.
She used some of the money to finish repairing the house and set up college funds for her children. She also hired a lawyer to get her cheating husband to pay child support.
Eventually, she and Nick fell in love.
What can we learn from this story?
- Take a chance on old things. Emma discovered a huge treasure under the house that no one else wanted to buy.
- Luck comes in unexpected ways. Emma went through a horrible time after her husband kicked her out, but everything turned out amazing, as if it was meant to happen.
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