November 28, 2006

Fin (50337)

Posted in Uncategorized at 10:54 pm by Ian

John finished his banana, got up from the couch and reached for the crutches leaning up against it. He hobbled into the kitchen, where Lucy was ostensibly washing dishes, but had stopped and was staring out the window in a trance. She woke up again when she heard him levering himself along.
“Do you need something?” she asked.
“No, just want to move around. My leg was getting stiff,” answered John.
Lucy nodded and went back to the dishes.
They had been back in Schenectady for two weeks now, after John spent two days in the NORAD base hospital, they had both been debriefed and sworn to secrecy by more intelligence officials than they even knew of agencies before, culminating in a personal visit with the president of the United States, who informed them that, although they could never tell anyone about it, they were true heroes, and the American people were in their debt. Then they had spent a few days with each of their parents, who grudgingly accepted that, somehow, all the news networks had mistakenly reported that they were wanted fugitives at the same time that John and Lucy decided to take in impromptu road trip and both lost their cell phones. John had shaken his head in disbelief after that meeting.
“You know, when I was a kid, I got busted for saying I was staying over at Jimmy’s house but really going out to a concert. Clearly I wasn’t aiming high enough with my story.”
“I know what you mean,” commiserated Lucy. “But, when you get down to it, it’s such an unbelievable tale that we couldn’t possibly be making it up, right?”
“I suppose. Tell you what: when we tell our roommates, we need to add something about a flying saucer.”
Lucy laughed and agreed with him.
But their roommates had not been interested in any of their explanations. Whatever the story, they were scarred from the arrests and interrogations, and knew only that it was somehow caused by John and Lucy, and that the two weren’t telling. They all moved out within a week.
John put two mugs of water in the microwave to heat up for hot chocolate. The first snow had fallen during their escapades, and it was now well into winter.
“Want to look at those roommate ads I wrote?” asked John, as he went to the cupboard to get the hot chocolate powder.
“I’m not sure if I can bear it just yet,” said Lucy. “It seems too accepting of normalcy, and I’m not quite ready to share my home again. I mean, who knows what kind of crazy plot another roommate could get me embroiled in.”
“Yeah. I always say you shouldn’t trust people who don’t have the common sense to stay out of other people’s mail,” said John, wheeling around toward the microwave and reaching out with a crutch to stop the microwave timer with 0:07 left on the timer. The first thing John had done on arriving back home was to gather up his map, his letters, and his record book and burn them all in the fireplace. He and Lucy had spent the evening feeding bits of
Lucy accepted a mug of cocoa with thanks, and started to sip it. Outside, a twig snapped, and she turned so quickly that she spilled the chocolate on her hand. It was just their neighbor’s son jumping through the snow in his backyard. She winced at the hot chocolate spill, then reached for the dishrag to wash it off. She sighed and tried to settle her racing heart.
“I just can’t shake the feeling that there’s someone creeping up behind me. How will we ever know when this is really over?”
John put his arm around her shoulders and pulled her close. “This seems like as good a time as any.”

The End.


1 Comment »

  1. Philip said,

    Good job! I am particularly impressed that you did it with over 48 hours to spare.

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