What is it that you wait for?

               I can smell it on the air, feel it on the wind. You think, glancing through the kitchen window as you apply a blue sponge to soapy, overturned dishes. Back to the sink – silverware onto silver surface. Why has it not arrived yet?  You pick up a fork, drop it in the sink, pick it up, wrap it up in the sponge, and rub with soap until it shines, unwrap, place, patter, pitter, patter, pitter, patter.

               The window; it has arrived.

               Abandon the kitchen, the washing up, fly through the living room, dodge the vase, spin around the banister, up the stairs, two steps at a time, up the stairs, up the third stairs, race through the attic room, lift up the window, and soar out, out into the rain, arms stretched into the wet space between granite firmament and granite floor. Eyes closed. Breathe in. Smile.

               You re-oxygenate your lungs with rainwater as your thoughts begin to swim in bucketfuls.


               “Lisa!” Play.

               Go away, human.

               “Lisa, are you mad? You’ll catch a cold.” The corners of your mouth turn upwards, you know this voice.

               “Lisa I know you hear me. Stop ignoring me, before I climb up onto that roof myself and push you back through that window to save your skin!”

               A giggle; yours. “Well, that’s not much motive for letting you into my house, is it Grace?” Rhetorical, why did she try to answer… you looked at her.  “Why are you walking in the rain? You’ll catch a cold, crazy human.” You say mockingly.

               “Well, funnily enough, it wasn’t raining when I started walking here. And see…” she grinned. “I have an umbrella and two feet firmly on the ground, on pavement, at the bottom floor, and have more than just a t-shirt on, unlike you silly.” Then her nose flared, as she tried to conceal the sly corners of her mouth creeping upwards towards her eyes. “I see you were careful not to put on a white one this time though.” She claps her hands mockingly.

               “Shush!” Your cheeks flush.

               “Oh, too late for that; we both know…”

               “Yes and I’d rather not it be bought up again in hope you and I forgot, you impertinent…” (between laughs) “Get up here now! You’re embarrassing me.”

               “You know you love me really.”

               “Of course I do. Come inside before you cause any more trouble. I’m serious!”

               “And that is what makes it all the funnier.” Hysterical laughter hadn’t quite broken through to the atmosphere yet, but that cheeky tongue sticking through her teeth, a scrunched up nose, and an impossible grin was enough to tell that underneath that skin of hers, she was suppressing unquenchable laughter. “Race you to the door.”

               “I’ll beat you.”

               “Pick up those feet slow poke!”

               So with a giggle in your chest, a trail of water behind you, you went; back through the window, back through the attic room door, down the stairs, down the stairs, trip, re-balance… down the stairs a little slower, spin back around the banister, to the end of the hall, pick up the keys, put them in the door, turn, open.

               “What took you so long?”

               “Oh, I don’t know. Three flights of stairs?”

               She laughs and shakes her head. “Look, your entirely drenched!”

               You look down to observe the navy t-shirt hanging limp off your body.

               “I don’t know why you were so worried out there anyway. It’s raining so hard that everybody’s windows are shut tight and the only people stupid enough to be out in it are you and I. No one will have heard, and you were lucky about last time too. Now would you stop blocking the door with your… sodden-ness.” She gestured in a circle.

               You stepped out of the way. “Well, I just thought, if you heard me perfectly well, who says someone else wasn’t listening?”

               “Bah!” She flapped her hand with a gorgeous guffaw escaping her jolly figure. “You don’t mind if I hang this stuff up here right?”

               “That’s fine. So you didn’t hear me perfectly fine?”

               “No. Don’t get too proud… your voice couldn’t sound louder than the rain; I was lip reading half the time.”

               “Ah, now I have a reason for ignoring you the first time.”

               “So you admit you were ignoring me?”

               “Erm…” You rub your head a little flustered, then looked for somewhere to put all the water that had collected on your palm. “I never meant that.”

               “I know exactly what happened.”

               Your infamous pair migrate towards the living room, Grace pulls a towel off the nearby radiator and lobs it at your face, before you wrap it around you and land in the sofa, a moment after her.

               “What happened, is that I am loud enough so that you could hear me and choose to ignore me, you on the other hand, chose to be quiet because you didn’t want to get in trouble with your next door neighbour again like the last time I came round and we were baking and ended up having a flour fight and the we spent like six hours cleaning flour-glue off the floor whilst singing at the top of our lungs. Is this true?”

                The smile behind your mouth screams to get free. Supress it. “A good observation detective, however I believe that was not the motive for the crime.”

               “Then, pray, what was your motive?... wait let me get that table, and that hat you keep in the bathroom boxy thing, get some chairs and we will do this properly. Three, two, one…”

               You run behind the dining table, now filled with craft bits, and slide out a folding table whilst Grace runs to the bathroom returning in her detective blazer and cap, one eyebrow raised.

               “Miss, too slow. Where is my chairs?”


               “Of course.”

               You sat down. She thumped her hands on the table and made you jump out your skin. Then the pair of you proceeded to laugh so hard it takes five minutes to calm down before she could ask again.

               “Then what is your motive Lisa Hale?”

               “Simple. You destroyed my peace. But considering you bought the fun as well, I would say your forgiven on that.”

               “Oy! This is your interrogation not mine, sneaky thing!”

               You laughed. “Want a coffee? Then we can continue.”

June 26, 2020 19:12

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