‘Twas a dark night and something stirred outside, trouble was she didn’t want to know, as whatever it was could look after itself, she had enough worries indoors. The light shone through the open doorway, it shouldn’t have been on, just like the front door, It shouldn’t have been unlocked. She knew perfectly well she’d locked up and switched all the lights off when she’d left that morning. So what to do? Tiptoe back outside before whoever it was noticed? Or just march into the room and face down whatever was waiting for her? Never one to back down, she marched to the doorway, took one look inside and wished to goodness she’d taken the first option…
He was standing there…totally oblivious, staring down at a body laid out on the floor, at the prone figure seeping blood everywhere, what the?….she must have made a sound, some noise seemed to attract his attention, and he swung round lifting a hand bearing a gun. She backed way quickly and the last thing she heard was the noise of an explosion … then darkness took her.
She awoke with a scream of terror echoing in her ears, and her throat feeling so raw. For a split second she thought she’d been shot, but it must have missed her or else he’d fired to scare her. If that were so then he needn’t have bothered, she’d passed that stage a while back. She was now totally paralyzed with fear and as she recovered her senses, she realized she was tied to a chair. Her arms dragged back with some kind of cord. “Wait a minute” she thought “was that one of the tiebacks from her new curtains?” Bloody liberty, they had cost her a fortune. Trust a man to not care about ruining a good pair of tiebacks. It had taken ages to find those, they were just the right colour match and ….anyway, other things to think about. Hysteria wasn’t going to help her situation… Anger yes, hysteria no way….
Looking around she couldn’t see the body, the blood yes, and it looked as if someone had quickly tried to clean it up, leaving a residue, … look at that stain!! How the heck was she going to get that stain out of her new carpet? If only she’d gone for the option of Laminated flooring, it was so easy to clean and ok, the blood might have soaked through the gaps but so much better that carpets for cleaning any day. Stop it, she admonished herself, think Anger, think … “What on earth was that doing there?” He’d had the sheer nerve to move the settee, and… come to think of it, actually, did it look better positioned that way?…It did, It made the room look much more balanced. “For goodness sake,” she thought, “concentrate on your situation, you’re going mad, think, … just think what are your options? Scream maybe? And possibly get shot. Sit there? And possibly get shot, um…not very good options really..”
Moving her head to the left, she could just make out his outline standing at the door and she noticed he’d place the gun on the table, just to the right of the moved settee, and she had to admit, it did look so much better in that position … and the table, he’d taken the lamp off it and placed it by the window. Was he a designer or something?.. Hang on? Was this her house? She swung her head round staring at each piece of furniture in turn. It wasn’t….some of it meant he had her taste in decor and matching furnishing but…that wonderful vase? She couldn’t afford that in a month of Sundays. She found her voice suddenly and squeaked out “um…excuse me? What’s going on?” No reply, nothing. Had he gone? She wiggled in the seat, moving her hands back and forth, trying to get them untied. Ah yes, the tieback was so bulky that she could get her hands free. Now standing up and moving ever so slowly, she tried to tiptoe noiselessly, “see? If there had been Laminated flooring no hope, but the carpet completely deadened all sound…” She got as far as the hallway before she heard footsteps. She scampered to the front door and tried to turn the handle as quietly and quickly as possible, just as a voice behind her said “Leaving already?” .
Her heart pumping madly, she turned to face a man holding two cups of coffee, and from the aroma it must be filtered surely? “Ooh, lovely,” she thought, and suddenly she noticed he was covered in red paint. Then she noticed the fresh paint smell…, the sheet covering the banister on the stairs, and the painter (?) said…”sorry about that, you kept falling off the chair unconscious as you were, so I had to think quickly and loosely tie your hands to keep you upright, otherwise you’d have got covered with the red paint. The owner would be none to pleased, there’s enough mess with Fred having his fit and dropping the tin of paint”… but what about the gun? Her widened eyes alighted on a hot gun for stripping paint, cordless at that and she felt herself blushing in embarrassment. That should teach her to jump to conclusions!!
“Now,” she wondered to herself, “is the owner married? He has such great taste!!”
LadyP © 2009