Time to take a step back. After the gore of yesterday we could use a bit of a break. This month is a chance to play around with some different things. In a way I will be playing an homage to old Bill Shakespeare. What this means is every story you read this month is being live written. I am going to put something new out on a daily basis that has never been seen by anyone else. Some of it will be coming in right under the wire.
What that means for tonight, I have a serial that all you will be getting right now is the starter. As the month moves on I will give you pieces here and there and it will (hopefully) finish before the end of the month. This doesn’t mean there will be a serial update everyday. But there will be a story of some sort related to this month’s theme (Letters from the Sanitarium) everyday.
As pieces of the serial appear there will be links to the preceding pieces so that you can keep up with the story as it is written. So before I jabber on too much more, let’s move into something a bit different…
Running List in order after this episode:
There Will be Flood
Will you do the Fandango
Awake in Dreams
Trip to the Doctor
Visions of Breakfast
After the Fire
Sweet Dreams are made of These
She Who Watches
She placed the sold marker on the real estate sign in the front yard, a huge win after the house sat on the market for over a year. “Things are turning around,” Annie said. She walked back to the front door of the brown and red Tudor and unlocked the key box.
She came to the house to do a final walk through before she gave the keys to the Lancasters, the homes new owners. The house needed a bit of work, but after sitting empty for so long that was to be expected. Annie wanted to make sure when they opened the front door what they saw greeted them with cheer and warmed their hearts.
The little things, she told herself, made all the difference. The little things brought her more customers through good will and word of mouth than she ever found through advertising. “Stick with what works,” words written on a card she kept in her coat pocket to check out whenever she felt like she was going nowhere.
A quick walk-through the house, she finished in the kitchen. There she left a vase filled with fresh flowers and a personalized card. Satisfied, she locked the front door and removed the key holder. She would give the keys to the Lancasters in the title office when they signed the final papers.
As she backed her car to the end of the driveway she noticed a flash of light in a bedroom window. A quick flash, she assumed it to be a trick in her mind, it was gone when she looked again.
The red Stratus pulled into the driveway and stopped a car’s length from the garage door. Shan turned to Lisa in the passenger seat. “Are you ready for this?” he asked. “Our first real home.”
“I can’t believe it,” she said. “It’s like this house has been sitting on the market just waiting for us.” She took a deep breath with her hand on the door handle. “On three?”
He laughed and opened his door. “No sense waiting any longer,” he said. He stepped out into a soft summer breeze. The scent of wildflowers assaulted him in the fresh air. “Can you smell that? Those flowers in back are like magic.”
“It’s been way too long since we’ve been around flowers in the wild,” she said. Shan’s promotion lifted them to a level where they could seriously consider buying a new home. Lisa found the house online and fell in love with the interior pictures. Shan was sold on their first visit. Lisa saw it as a sign that the house sat for so long without any buyers. It was waiting for them.
They didn’t go inside right away, instead they walked around the front yard enraptured with the wonder of the yards they now claimed. The landscaping in both yards bordered on feral but the underlying work was still sound and would make a great base for them to build upon.
Though the front yard was modest, the evergreen trees that lined the edges of both sides acted as a wall between their house and the neighbors, still connected but a small barrier to delineate the space. The back yard had been encased with a privacy fence all around. Lisa wanted to plant vegetable garden in a back corner and they talked of what they would plant and where. The possibilities of their new home overwhelmed them but invigorated them at the same time.
“Can you believe this?” Lisa asked. “So much space, this is ridiculous.”
Shan watched as she spun in place. “Imagine one day when the baby can run through here.”
She patted her belly. “Soon.”
“You ready to step inside our new home?” He asked. “We can always come back out here later.”
Lisa grabbed his hand and pulled him back through the gate into the front yard. “You have the keys?”
“I thought you had them?” he said. “Don’t tell me we need to call a locksmith and we haven’t even been inside yet.”
She shook her keys. “Oh you mean these?” She giggled then jogged up to the door. “I suppose you want to come inside.”
She turned the key in the lock and the door opened. The fresh scent of the flowers permeated the air as they stepped into the living room. At first Lisa could not see where the smell came from until she moved further into the house.
A larger opening led from the living room into the kitchen. She found the vase on the kitchen counter. Lying next to the vase, she found the card, no longer in its envelop. The top of the envelope had been slit open and the card sat on top of it, opened with its spine facing up.
Lisa picked up the card to read the inscription. The hand written missive inside said congratulations and was signed Annie. No business card or last name, she thought it a bit strange but assumed it came from their realtor. “Shan,” she called. “Come look at what Annie left for us.” No answer, he wasn’t in the living room. She carried the vase and card with her as she walked down the hall to the bedrooms. “Babe, where are you?”
“How soon can we have it turned on?” Shan said into the phone. He stood in the middle of the larger bedroom, his cell phone glued to his ear. “Really, that would be great.” After a few minutes more he hung up. “Great news, we should have power by Monday morning.”
“Are you kidding me?” she asked. “What are we supposed to do till then?”
“Candles? Well that might not be good either. I still have to call the city to get water turned on. Who knows how long that will take?” He signed, then smiled at her. “Welcome to home ownership.”
“It isn’t all that bad,” Lisa said. “We still have a few days before the moving truck will be here. Think of it as an adventure.”
“Maybe we should get a hotel room?” he said. “At least over the weekend we might want to. I have to report to work on Monday.”
“Let’s jump that bridge when we come to it.”