Paying for past deeds (a series of short stories).
|The metal gate clanged when he closed it behind him. Shuddered a bit.
He watched the dog from the corner of his eye and saw his ears twitch. It didn't matter to Norman. The mutt was old, weary looking, curled up in a ball. He wasn't going nowhere. Norm kept walking.
He took a deep breath in slow, out slow, in slow, out slow like how the doctor showed him eight months, three weeks and five days ago. Mother nature had visited his heart. Squeezed it, pounded it, filled his mouth up with blood and left him gasping for life. He was sixty-five. He figured he had a ways to go. Too many important things to do. Some people needed him..like Jane and Jonathon. He shook his head and felt the memories fall back.
Norm kept walking forward, up the path covered by weeds, past the same neglected, dusty pick-up truck that used to be red. He reached the door, shifted his satchel bag on his left shoulder, stretched out his balled up right hand and knocked. His sweat beaded and rolled down his face, so, he took off his glasses, shook his damp towel from his back pocket and begun to wipe. A sliver of wind raised the damp grey locks from his forehead. His hand paused as the door opened. The old lady stood there.
"Hey Norman," She smiled when she spoke, "what you got there?" Inside, the house was dark.
"A letter for Jane Mrs D." He stretched it out. She took it slowly.
'From him?" She asked. He watched her turn it over and noticed her hands were damp, wrinkled.
"Yes, Mrs D. from Johnny." He glanced at the sun. It had a good three o'clock beam straight on him. He put the towel back and stood quietly out of respect, eyes back on her, waiting.
"Been a while", she said and paused "he's a good writer. Real faithful."
"I guess he doesn't have much else to do Ma'am with all that time on his hands."
"You're right Norm" her hand drifted to her side. The letter hung down. She looked at him and her eyes were dimmed by age. So was her dress and the white socks on her feet.
"You almost finished working?"
"Yes Mrs D." he turned away, "two more hours," he started walking ,"..say hello to Jane for me." He waved.
He watched the dog from the corner of his eye and saw his ears twitch. It didn't matter to Norman. The metal gate clanged when he closed it behind him. Shuddered a bit.