That the gentleman in question was a nut was beyond question. He was an institutionalized psychotic. He was nutty enough to think he could make an atom bomb out of modeling clay!
Abercrombie, the manual therapist patted the old man on the shoulder. "You're doing just fine, Mr. Lieberman. Show it to me when you have finished."
The oldster in the stained convalescent suit gave her a quick, shy smile and went back to his aimless smearing in the finger paints.
Miss Abercrombie smoothed her smock down over trim hips and surveyed the other patients working at the long tables in the hospital's arts and crafts shop. Two muscular and bored attendants in spotless whites, lounged beside the locked door and chatted idly about the Dodgers' prospects for the pennant.
Through the barred windows of the workshop, rolling green hills were seen, their tree-studded flanks making a pleasant setting for the mental institution. The crafts building was a good mile away from the main buildings of the hospital and the hills blocked the view of the austere complex of buildings that housed the main wards.
The therapist str
A man in a nuthouse--sorry, a mental hospital--builds what he says is an atom bomb out of clay in crafts therapy. There is consternation when it explodes. The military gets involved.
The characters are a bit thin, I would've liked to have known more about the nut, Thaddeus. The story is plot-driven, and the plot is pretty predictable.
A short story that is quite improbable.
I remember reading this story while in Jr. High. I loved it them. Now reading it again, its just has good as I remember.