No Visiting Hours

“Something really annoying happened yesterday,” Aaron broke the silence with a teaser that was sure to get his friend’s attention.

It was another warm Sunday in Maine, and the best friends were seated on their favorite bench along the river.  Aaron took a hit of his Snapple, while Holly sipped her coffee and pondered her response.

“Let me try to translate,” she said excitedly.  “I’ve gotten very good at speaking Aaron!  Something annoying means that something unexpected happened because you hate change.  Although, it could also be something involving people because your fellow humans are basically your archenemies.”

“Present company excluded, of course,” he clarified with a smile.

Holly giggled.

“You know me very well,” he congratulated her with a pat on the shoulder.  “This incident involved both people and something unexpected.  So you can understand why it annoyed me so much.”

Holly nodded and took another sip of her coffee.  He clearly had a story to tell, and she knew to just sit back and let him roll with it.

short story, humor, Modern Philosopher“So I finally get out of bed and head outside to feed Outdoor Kitty,” he began.  “When I open the screen door, however, a piece of notebook paper that was wedged between the door and the frame falls to the floor.  I’m immediately intrigued and annoyed.”

“Obviously,” Holly agreed.  “My first guess would be that it’s either a flyer from some religious sect inviting you to join them for their next meeting, or a plea for support from a politician.”

“It was neither,” Aaron informed her with a smile.  “I’m actually slightly excited because the hopeless romantic in me hopes it’s a note from an ex-girlfriend who wants to reconnect.”

“While that sounds like something out of a movie, I’ve heard the stories and know that exact scenario has happened at least twice since I’ve known you,” she observed.

“Exactly,” he confirmed her statistics.  “So I picked up the paper and hoped to see a familiar handwriting or name on the page.  Much to my chagrin…”

“Now that’s a word you don’t hear enough in everyday conversation,” she interrupted.

“Agreed,” he concurred.  “Anyway, it was from some stranger.  It said her grandparents used to live in my house, and she’d love the chance to see it again because it meant so much to her.  She left her phone number and asked me to call if I didn’t think the request was too weird.”

Holly chuckled.  She could only imagine what Aaron thought about that request.

flash fiction, humor, Modern Philosopher“So how did you process her request?” she worded it delicately.

“I crumbled it up and tossed it in the trash,” he replied like she should have known the answer.

For the record, Holly had figured that this would be his reaction, but she wanted to hear it from him.  That would be much more entertaining.

“I’ve seen horror movies.  I read crime novels,” he rambled on as she’d hoped.  “Letting a stranger into your house is how you get robbed and/or murdered.  And the murder is never something quick and painless.  It’s always grisly.”

“I don’t even let my friends into my house, so why the hell would I allow some stranger to enter?  Because she wrote a cheesy letter meant to tug at my heartstrings?  If the house meant that much to you, you should have convinced grandma not to sell it, or snatched it up yourself when it was on the market.”

Holly considered playing devil’s advocate and tossing out ideas like maybe grandma died, or perhaps the writer of the letter was a child at the time and couldn’t scrape together the down payment.  She decided to hold her tongue, however, because if she put the thought that someone died in the house into Aaron’s head, she risked his having nightmares for weeks or refusing to set foot in the house until he was sure that grandma’s vengeful spirit had been driven out of the place.

She went down another path.  “Well, I certainly appreciate that I’m one of the very few people you allow inside your home.”

He took a long sip of his Snapple and gave her a sideways glance while he processed her words.

“Just don’t ever let me catch you posting pics of my house online,” he threatened.  “If you do, your privileges will be revoked, and you will be allowed no further than the front porch.  If that.”

Holly saluted that she accepted these terms.

“If you really think about it, a stranger should be more afraid of being trapped alone inside your house with you, than you of the stranger,” she teased.

“Keep it up, and I won’t even allow you in the driveway, smart ass.”

Holly smiled.  There was something about Aaron that really appealed to her, and she often wondered if that meant there was something wrong with her…

About Austin

Native New Yorker who's fled to the quiet life in Maine. I write movies, root for the Yankees, and shovel lots of snow.
This entry was posted in Humor and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to No Visiting Hours

  1. kristianw84 says:

    Well, at least the stranger left a note rather than knocking on the door. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with Holly.

    I really appreciate your angle in the photo with the chessboard, benches, and river! Putting that film degree to use again, I see! 🙂

    • Austin says:

      The stranger probably knocked on the door, but Wally was asleep. That’s why she had to resort to leaving a letter!

      I’m glad you enjoyed the photo. 🙂

  2. Well, well . . . well, welcome to 2022. Enjoyed the post and, just saying. . . I think I’m married to that man.

  3. beth says:

    She is kind of a good balance for him

  4. markbialczak says:

    Aaron should have let the granddaughter in for a supervised visit, Holly present also alert and ready to call the authorities. Would make an excellent future episode, Austin …

  5. beth says:

    I’ve actually had this happen to me twice in my life. and both turned out very well. )

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