That evening, when my Grandma warned me about the Bingo hall, I'd set fire to the curtains.
This wasn't the first time I'd unwittingly set something on fire, through my constant use of scented candles, but it was the first time I'd managed to set alight my Grandma's home furnishings. And she was not best pleased.
"Oh for pity's sake, Lily," she'd exasperated, as I rushed back from the kitchen with the only fire extinguisher in the small cottage we'd called home, "those drapes took me a full two months to stitch together."
Despite my promise to order her a brand new set of curtains, my grandmother thought it fit to punish me, though she likely felt she was doing me a favour pushing my unsocial self out of the house.
"Now Lily," she sighed as she fixed her hair, readying herself to leave, "it will do you some good to get away from that computer."
For my Grandma, Monday Night Bingo, was a long-standing weekly ritual she rarely missed. So even though this particular Monday my Grandma now found herself getting ready to go purchase the materials she'd need to make her own curtains because, 'Lily you know I don't like store bought drapes', she thought nothing of making me go in her place to the bingo hall.
"Sweetheart," Grandma warmly spoke on her way to the door, "that Janice Wetherton has been eyeing my eighth Row seat for the past 3 months so you make sure you keep it safe from her... and oh!" Nana jolted to a stop just at the front entrance, "Just a thought, but I need you to check on that new bingo caller, the Stevenson's boy? I think he's rigging the bingo balls," she nodded her head with confidence at her assertion.
Before she made her way to leave I quickly called out, "Wait, what? Stevenson?" I raised single quizzical eyebrow as I tried to process the information, "You mean, Rick Stevenson, the guy from the garage workshop?"
"Yep," Grandma's warm smile now took on an ominous edge, "I know he's been setting it up so that Sonya wins more than her fair share of bingo games," raising her hand she gestured a finger at me, "so I need you to keep an eye on him. I'm counting on you honey," and at that Grandma disappeared into thin air as she walked directly through the unopened front door.
Despite it having been over six months since her passing, my Grandma still hadn't let go of the mortal plane. Nor, apparently, let go of her need to try to run my life.
Though she'd left me the house in her will, a cosy home we'd both shared in the small countryside town my Grandma had lived in all her life, her disembodied spirit still hung around waiting to go to Monday Night Bingo. And to go buy house furnishings.
Authors Note: This short story ended up being a little outside of the prompts spectrum. I felt there was a real story behind why the grandmother felt someone was cheating and ended up writing about that (and as my preferred writing background is Sci-Fi/Urban Fantasy, I veered off with a Paranormal twist).
Here is the story prompt : You're on a top-secret spy mission—for your grandmother. She can't make it to her Monday Night Bingo (you tell us why), but she's certain that one of the regulars is cheating, and she sends you to check it out. Conduct a covert operation to catch this cheater in the act. (500 words or fewer)