Thursday, November 15, 2012

Last Night

When the light turned red, a man and a lady impeccably dressed stepped out in front of the cars, started pointing to a house on the corner. The man was wearing a suit and shiny black shoes. He was waving a fedora hat with one hand and a walking stick with the other. The woman had on a bright red dress with ruffles around the bottom that she held in her hands and swayed side to side while kicking like a can-can dancer in spiky heels. 

The decrepit house had a ‘for sale’ sign in the front yard I could hardly see through the overgrown bushes, scraggly trees. I rolled down my window because a look of desperation on the couple’s faces touched my heart, but the light turned green before we could talk. I then pulled into the out-of-business gas station across the street.

We never spoke, yet we communicated. They couldn’t sell their house and I wondered how someone dressed so nice could live in such a dump. I decided to take a look, not because I was interested in buying a house, but because curiosity got the best of me.

The house sat on cinder blocks. White paint was chipped off the outside causing it to resemble a splotchy albino. Rotten wood had created depressions on the side. Weeds ran rampant throughout the yard.

Inside, the house looked like something from the 1960s with Pepto-Bismol colored tile on the bathroom walls and avocado green appliances in the kitchen. There was no furniture in the dank, musty one-bedroom house.

Somehow I got the word out about this couple’s onus and the community came together to repair the home. When they were finished, it looked like a cute cottage from a fairy tale where everyone lives happily ever after.

Only, this story doesn’t have a happy ending. Many things occurred during the house’s final touches. My middle son befriended a trouble-making boy and went over to his house. I later found out the thirteen-year-old had driven him in a truck without a steering wheel. Apparently they remained in the boy’s house without adult supervision and when I went to pick up my son, I discovered the boy had shared some very inappropriate things with him from the Internet. We were both disturbed by it, although I have no idea what it was.

But I didn’t pick my son up until after what I’m about to tell you had happened. I had a vision that the house was in flames, but shunned it off to this dream I was having. We had made the final walk-through, but a child who appeared from nowhere forgot her purse. She went inside to retrieve it and couldn’t find it. After a thorough search through closets, she found it in the kitchen by the stove. Suddenly I appeared as a fume arose from the gas burner. I grabbed the girl and jumped out of the house just as it exploded.

Then I woke up. Can you believe it? If you had to write an ending to this story, what would it be? Please share in comments!



Susan said...

Was it really just a dream? Too bad--except for the part about your son of course. I hope he's ok. If I wrote this story I would want it to be like an Urban Ghost Story, where the couple did not exist or the house was not theirs.

Laurie Kolp said...

Well he recently had a very bad skating accident and had to miss two days of school, so I can see where that part came from.