"3468 Emily Ave." He repeated.
Something was off about these guys and the older one was the only one who spoke. Even in the fading light, Samantha could see, that, while Alison spoke to them, neither one would meet her gaze. The speaker's voice was monotone and the younger one restlessly circled the car. Both girls started to wonder if these individuals were stable. If only they could get the gas in the tank and safely get into the car without the intruders forcing their way in… Alison was actually at a loss for words for once, and her complexion paled. Samantha discreetly reached into her pocket for her phone wondering if she should call the police?
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw a man coming up to them on the sidewalk who appeared to be walking his dog. From her peripheral vision, Samantha could see the approaching man slow down as he heard the exchange. Just having a witness around was a comforting thought even as her hands trembled trying to hold her phone.
The new comer seemed quite a bit older than herself and was striking with dark blonde hair and bright eyes. Black jacket … leather. An air of confidence surrounded him. Perfect posture. His stern face was intimidating, emotionless, and beautiful all at the same time.
Having heard part of the conversation, he spoke to the boys,
"Why don't you guys get going." It was a command rather than a question.
Something about his speech caught Samantha's attention. There was a cadence and inflection that indicated an accent she could not quite place.
The two creepy boys stopped and glanced in his direction, eyes still downcast. They were no more afraid of the newcomer, than they had been of Alison.
"Now," the new stranger leaned in as if talking to someone who was hard of hearing.
Incredibly, the older child insisted, "But we need to get in...in the car...you have to let us in…"
A low rumbling sound started. The poor dog had started to walk behind his owner as if frightened. But the dog then began to growl and lunged forward, snarling and barking so loudly, making everyone jump.
The boys backed away. Although not in the direction of the house where they claimed to live, but rather into someone's back yard… but not without a parting angry scowl from the leader. Heads down, they seemed to drift away, rather than walk…
Mrs. Goodwin sat alone in her front room.
Her two grown daughters decided to pay an impromptu visit. Whenever Agnes and Maron arrived together, it usually meant a family conference. Most importantly on the agenda was their insistence that she move this time was no different.
She could see them making their way up the front steps. Agnes was surveying the dilapidated home from the outside with a critical eye. Pointing and talking to her younger sister Maron, forever the reluctant accomplice. Maron was younger and more gentle in nature. She did not want to see her mother living alone in this old home full of bad memories any more than her bossy sister, Agnes. She sympathized with her mother's point of view. Her mother wanted her independence. While Maron did not have the space at home, or the time during the day to adequately look after her mother, Agnes did.
Mrs. Goodwin's only choice, if she were to sell her house, was to move in with Agnes.
The door opened as it was already unlocked. Mrs Goodwin could see anyone approaching the house from her favorite chair in the front room.
A loud high pitched sound flooded the front room just as the women let themselves in. It took a moment for the old woman to register the sound, what it was, and where it was coming from. But too late.
In a heartbeat, Agnes was off,
"Ma, do you not hear that?"
Without giving her mother a chance to answer, Agnes threw her purse towards the nearest chair and huffed off towards the back of the house…
"This is what I have been talking about!" Her volume increasing with frustration as her voice traveled from the kitchen.
Maron simply greeted her mother with a kiss on the cheek.
In her defense, Mrs. Goodwin tried to explain,
"I heard the kettle, I was just going to shut it off. …"
Maron gave her an understanding nod.
Agnes stomped back into the room. All explanations fell on deaf ears. Sometimes it was better to let the older daughter say her piece, allowing her to think she was saving everyone from themselves.
"You cannot remain here alone. What if we hadn't stopped by when we did. Come live with me. This place is a dump and a fire trap…..'
And on it went...
During the lecture, Maron spotted a framed photograph on her mom's lap. One of the ones she and Agnes had tried to hide from her. The ones that brought nothing but sadness. Agnes had eyes like a hawk and noticed the picture too. She exchanged a glance with her sister. Her mood softened. Gently she took the frame from her mom's hand and spoke,
"Please come stay with one of us. Sell this house," she looked around, searching for a better description for Mrs Goodwin's home.
"You don't even really know your tenants moving in on the other side of the house. They would not be able to check on you if we asked them to. And they are young college kids, who knows what is even going on over there."
Again, they let Agnes ramble and enlighten them.
Mrs. Goodwin glanced at the old family photo now sitting on the end table,
" If I were to move then they won't know where I am."
Finally Maron spoke up,
"You know that would only be for the best, Mom."
Constructive criticism appreciated…
And, I always miss typos ;)