House of Skeletons

Italo Calvino said: The more enlightened our houses are, the more their walls ooze ghosts.

Image credit: “love Don’t live here anymore…” – © 2009 Robb North – made available under Attribution 2.0 Generic

House of Skeletons by Linda Nelson – © June 12, 2013

Tara loved the house she grew up in, she hadn’t been back home in over twenty years. How time flies and things change.

She pulled up to the curb and put the car in park. Tara could see the property from her car. A rickety For-Sale sign hung on a wooden post. She wondered how long the property had been for sale. How could the home that she had loved so much fallen into such disrepair?

“There it is,” she said to her best friend Maddy. “That’s where I grew up.”

“That is the house you are going to buy?” Maddy asked. “Your kidding me. You can’t fix that unless you plan on bulldozing it down.”

Tara got out of the car and walked briskly toward the rundown home, Maddy followed close behind. “I’m not going to plow this house into the earth. I can fix it, I know I can.” She poked her head in the doorway where the door was off it’s hinges and leaning up against the wall. Dirt billowed in the front door, spilling across the floor.

Tara stepped over the threshold to look about the building. The Real Estate agent would be there any minute.

The back part of the house was missing where the kitchen and the dining room used to be. All that remained of it was the broken caved in bricks. She had helped her mom bake many a cake and cookie in that kitchen. Her mom passed away while she was in her second year of college.

She could still picture her dad sitting in his recliner in the living room. The chair was no longer there, but her memory was, there he sat watching many a ball game on Saturday afternoons. None of the furniture remained, just the memory of it in her mind. A single tear streaked down her cheek.

Tara’s dad passed away six months ago from a heart attack. Being an only child now meant being alone. But she had Maddy, her best friend and the closest she had to family. Maddy was like a sister to her.

“Hello,” A voice called from outside the house.

“The Agent is here Tara.”

“Okay, can you tell her I will be right out?”

Tara waited for Maddy to step outside the doorway before she crossed what was left of the living room and stooped before the dusty fireplace hearth. There she found the loose brick and underneath it the ring she had hid when she was five. How her mom had gotten into so much trouble for reporting her engagement ring missing. Her dad was rip shit. Tara never told anyone that she had taken the ring. Today she couldn’t remember why she had taken it and not given it back. It was just water under the dam, and all she had left of a memory from a time long ago.

She left the home and stepped outside to greet the Real Estate Agent whom Maddy was now questioning about the price of the property.

“I’m sorry to say. I can’t sell it to you. The property is taken. It was sold last night.”

“Can’t we counter the bid?” Asked Maddy. She looked toward Tara out of concern.

“I’m sorry to say, the owner has already accepted the sale. The property has been paid for in cash up front.”

Tara’s eyes welled with tears. She was too late. She clutched the ring in the palm of her hand that was thrust deep inside her pocket. At least she had that. “It’s all right Maddy.”

“Can I show you another property?” the agent asked.

“No never mind. I only wanted this one because it was where I had been born and raised,” answered Tara. “Thank you for coming out to meet us.”

“Are you sure, I have other properties like this one.”

“No this was the only one I wanted. But can you tell me who bought it?” Tara asked.

“Oh yes, a very nice elderly man. I think he said his name was Barry Cooper.”

Tara felt the blood leave her face. She had no idea her uncle Barry was alive. Her folks told her that he had died when she was five and was never allowed to ask about him ever again. That was until she had entered college and had done a little bit of investigating that turned up a hidden secret. Apparently her Uncle Barry was her real father. No one knew except her dead parents and her. So the skeleton was about to return home and look in the closets and Tara would pay him a visit when he did.

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>Ruby Angel Makes a Friend

>The rain poured from the sky. Kitty Sampson forgot all about being Ruby Angel and sniffed the air under the porch. Shinning in the dark before her were these big yellow green eyes. The eyes blinked at her. Kitty crouched close to the ground and readied herself for attack.

“Who there,” she called out to the eyes.

The eyes backed away further under the porch. The rain splashed underneath the porch, creating small puddles. Kitty shook her front paws. She just hated it when she got her feet wet. The dirt would become mud and the mud would then stick to the bottom of her feet. And mud, well that was just nasty tasting stuff. She could not stand the grit getting stuck between her teeth.

Again she called out to the eyes. “Who are you?” Kitty crept closer to the darkness. “Why don’t you come closer so I can see who you are?”

“Ne… deep…please don’t… Ne…deep…eat me,” came the reply.

Kitty crept even closer, following the porch siding wall toward the deeper, dark depths of the underside porch. Her eyes were beginning to adjust to the low lighting. She could now make out a dark image sitting against the wall, deep in the shadows.

“Why would you think I would eat you?” Kitty asked the shadow. “I’m not even hungry.”

“Ne…deep…because…Ne…deep…you are bigger than me…Ne…deep…and…Ne…deep…I am just a frog.”

“Play maybe…I would play with you. But not, eat you. I am Ruby Angel, the super model heroine cat…I am the great protector of the poor-poor unfortunate ones.”

Kitty found a dry patch on the ground. She decided this was a good place to lounge while she waited for the rain storm to stop. Her people would be home soon. They would be looking for her and calling her to come eat her dinner. She licked her chops thinking about the dish of cat food they would present to her. Along with a small bowl of milk.

“Ne…deep…good to meet…Ne…deep…you.” The frog blinked. “Ne…deep…my name is…Ne…deep…Bernie…Ne…deep.”

“Nice to meet you Bernie.” Kitty giggled a small purr. “Are you a super hero too?”

“Super hero…Ne…deep…No…Ne…deep…What is a…Ne…deep…Super hero?”

Kitty licked her paws. “You don’t know what a super hero is? Well my boy told me; he is one of my people, he told me a super hero is someone who saves someone from something.”

“Ne…deep…you have a boy and you have people? Ne…deep…I have seen…Ne…deep…that boy before…Ne…deep…he tried to catch me…Ne…deep….but I jumped away from him…Ne…deep…as fast as I could….Ne…deep.”

“Oh he would not have hurt you. It is the girl you have to watch out for.” Kitty warned.

Just the other day Kitty watched the girl catch a grass hopper. She held it in her hands and shook them as hard as she could. Then she had spoken something to Kitty, something to do with check this out and then, the girl opened her hands right in front of Kitty’s face.

The poor grasshopper was so dizzy from the shaken, it did not know which direction it was going in and jumped out of the girls hands as soon as they were opened. Kitty immediately pounced on the poor thing and pretended to eat it. Meanwhile she hid the grasshopper underneath her body so the girl would not find it.

The trick seemed to work. Kitty’s apparent meal grossed the girl out, making her lose interest in torturing the bug. She ran into the house, yelling, “Mom, Kitty just ate a bug. A big bug. How gross.”

That was the day, Kitty Sampson decided to become Ruby Angel. She would set out to save the world from the girl. Then again, maybe she could save others too. There were other dangers besides the girl.


Kitty thought for a moment. “Bernie, would you like to be a super hero like me?” She flicked her tail to and fro. “It is a lot of fun.”

“Oh I don’t know,” said the frog. “How do I become a super hero?”

“Well, first you need a super hero name.” Kitty licked her paws. “Then you will need to decide what kind of super powers you have.”

Kitty and Bernie then began to talk about name. There was Bernie Hopper and Super Frog. At one point Kitty even suggested the name Fast Tongue Bernie, but he did not like any of them. She was about to give up when she thought of one last name. “How about Jade Brown.”

“Oh…I do like it. Jade Brown is a very catch name.” Bernie flicked out his tongue and snatched a lonely mosquito from the air in front of Kitty’s face. “And my super powers are that I can jump really high and I do have a lightning fast tongue.”

So, that is how Kitty Sampson and Bernie the Frog became friends. From that day on they became a super hero team, finding adventure all around them in the back yard. The underneath of the porch became their den or home base. A special secret hiding spot from the girl in the house.

  Copyright © February 2011