Call Waiting 7- Two Cents In
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The large man in the suit still had the gun pointed at Patricia and Macy as they were seated. He shook off the slight sense of fear he had for the little girl who just laughed at him. He cracked his neck, bulked up his frame and said,
“What’s so funny, kid. I have a gun pointed at you….and I’m not afraid to use it.”
“She is just a child. We are doing what you asked…”
Macy interrupted her Mother and squinted her eyes as she stared down the large man.
“Don’t worry, Momma….he can’t do anything without the lady telling him to….she needs us….he’s big and all but his gun isn’t even loaded….and it’s hard to be scared of a man who can’t even remember to zip his pants up after he goes to the bathroom.”
Patricia didn’t know how Macy knew the gun wasn’t loaded or how she knew about some lady who called the shots but instinct caused her to look at the mans crotch. She let out a giggle with her daughter as indeed his fly was down.
The large man holstered his gun as he looked down, red faced. He zipped up his trousers as he muttered,
He then pulled up a chair in front of the door, sat and crossed his arms and seemed to pout as he was bested by a child.
Patricia tried to break the tension of the waiting by asking a question.
“Why are the streets so deserted? It seems like a good sized town to be….empty.”
The large man changed his pout to a quizzical look and replied,
“You really don’t know…do you?”
Patricia shook her head in a no fashion and answered,
Before the large man could answer, his chair was struck from behind with the door which startled him and caused him to get up and turn around in a defensive fashion with his gun drawn.
An frail, old woman with a shawl around her torso, a bonnet on her head and a floor length dress pushed her way through the doorway, followed by 2 more large men. One of which, was carrying a medium sized bag.
She looked up at the man with the gun drawn and frustratingly said,
“Put that pea shooter away before you hurt yourself, Marion….and for Penny’s sake, get out of the way so I can see our visitors that you all got me out of the ceremony to see.”
Marion slumped his large shoulders, grabbed his chair and moved out of the way, clearing a sightline for the lady to see Patricia and Macy,
The old woman moved in closer to the pair and smiled. She then turned to the 3 large men and Deacon and spoke,
“I need you all to go to the ceremony and leave me with our guests. Please, leave the bag with me….”
Marion chimed in,
“But, ma’am….they may be dangerous….she has been gone a long time..”
“SILENCE! The only danger here is in not fulfilling the prophesy. Do as I ask. My driver will be outside if needed.” The lady replied.
The men grudgingly left the old woman with Patricia and Macy.
The old woman, bag in her lap, looked Patricia in the eyes, paused and then spoke,
“Although you bear a striking resemblance….you are not….my Mother…who left us to fend for ourselves so many years ago….but…I sense the gift of sight beyond sight is what has brought you here. What sights have you to reveal?”
Patricia looked at Macy who was about to speak. She stopped her and did her best to explain herself.
She told the woman of the one who called herself Penny who saved the house from burning down from faulty wiring and about delaying them from going into town avoiding a terrible accident that occurred on the freeway. She told her about the dream she had about seeing a man arguing with Penny from behind the bedroom door and the gunshot and silence. She finished by saying it all started by finding an old time phone with a frayed cord in the attic of the house.
The old woman’s face changed to a surprised look. She paused and asked,
“An old time phone?”
She opened the bag that sat in her lap and pulled something out, set it on the table and asked,
“Is it similar to this phone?”
Macy reached for the phone, turned it over and looked at the nameplate, which was identical to the phone from the attic. She replied to the old woman,
“Yes, ma’am it is exactly like this one. I have it in our car outside. Would you like to see it?”
“I very much would.” The woman replied.
Macy went out the car, with her Mother watching closely, retrieved the phone, brought it inside and placed it in front of the old woman.
The old woman stared at the phone and seemed to be reliving a memory from the past. After a few moments, she wiped a single tear from her eye, regained her composure and spoke,
“That was the phone that was in our home. She called me from it on the last day she was seen. I spoke to her on this phone,” she said as she picked up the phone she took out of the bag, then continued.
“During that call…she told me…that she may have to leave….but not to worry…as long as I stayed close to the phone, that she would call and come back. I just waited for the call. I was 10 then. I kept the phone…knowing that my Mother would call. I am now 105. She started to contact me through this phone a few weeks ago….saying she had found a way home….and for me to wait. The gift of sight beyond sight was always strong in her. I sense that gift is strong in you as well…..” She said as she turned her gaze from Patricia to Macy.
Patricia, being uncomfortable, with attention being placed on her young child, interrupted.
“Whoa whoa whoa. Hold on. I don’t know what this sight beyond sight is and what it has to do with my daughter….but we have a lot of questions with no answers…and unless we get some we are out of here!”
The old woman gave a stern look to Patricia and replied,
“I don’t think leaving would be in your best interest. Marion and the boys have gone to the ceremony…and I am quite certain that he has put the word out that Penny is back. You would cause quite the ruckus by going outside at this point.”
Patricia, who looked more confused than ever, countered,
“WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN? Ceremony…sight beyond sight…empty streets…old phones that ring without being plugged into anything….I wish we never would have moved into that old f@&(ing house!”
The old woman, who was a bit startled, asked,
“This house.” Patricia replied as she took the photo from the realtor file and placed it in front of her.
The old woman picked up the photo, gazed at it and paused before she spoke…..
“This is the house we lived in when I was a child….my grandfather told me he had it destroyed…..you live in it now?”
“Yes…the phone was in the attic….shortly after finding it, all of this started happening….which eventually led us here. Why has this Penny brought us here and what is going on?”
The frail, old woman sat in silence as the wheels of her mind turned and churned the newly learned information that spun around and around attempting to connect the new dots that were added to the puzzle of her families history. After a few moments, she looked up at Patricia and Macy, took in a deep breath, exhaled and spoke,
“Maybe, if I start at the beginning it would help. Possibly together we can make sense out of all of OUR confusion….for I am beginning to think that the entire existence of this town and it’s beliefs are a lie.”
To be continued……be patient….I am a mere penny’s throw from the end.