Word Count 495
By Joann Dickson
Something bad is going to happen. I can feel it in my bones. The children have been here all week, talking in hushed tones, walking around the property. And where is Betty? She left the other day and hasn’t come back! I miss her singing and cooking and cleaning me so lovingly. Georgie Jr. keeps talking about a “nursing home”. What home? This is her home! She has lived here since she and George got married all those years ago. They raised Georgie Jr., Alice, Jimmy, Frankie and Dorie here. Now they are all married and living somewhere else, but this is where George and Betty have been ever since. That is, until George left - no one ever told me where he went, just one day he was gone. And now Betty. I don’t like this one bit. We’ve had so many great years here, when the kids were growing up. Oh, the holidays were the best! The wonderful smells of turkey, and gravy, and all the fixins. And the little ones, all fighting over who would get to lick the beaters and the bowl from Betty’s baking. She is such a wonderful baker. Come to think of it, ever since George went away, she hasn’t been baking much.
I loved Christmas time the best, because Betty would put little candles in all my windows, and every night they would glow with a warm, welcoming light that you could see all the way from the corner. The grandkids would start to squeal with delight when they piled into the front hall and saw our big, beautiful Christmas tree in the parlor. And Christmas mornings, what chaos! Wrapping paper all over the place, empty boxes, everyone talking at once. It was wonderful. Of course, now that the grandkids are older, they don’t often come here.
Now there is some man here meeting with the family; they call him a “developer.” What the heck’s a developer? All I know is, he keeps walking around the house and our ten acres and licking his lips like someone put a big juicy steak right in front of him. Keeps talking about how many houses they can put on ten acres. Well, I’m the only house on these ten acres, and I like it just fine that way! Maybe my paint is peeling a little, and maybe my front porch is sagging, but that’s because George went away and hasn’t come back to fix me up. But I still keep Betty snug and warm in the winter, and I love it when she sits in the parlor with a nice big book and a fire blazing in the fireplace; that’s when I’m happiest. Unfortunately, she hasn’t read a book in quite a while. And the fireplace needs cleaning out. Oh well, maybe one of the boys will help her with that. But what about that developer? Something bad is going to happen. I can feel it in my bones.