(My plate after Beatrice and I dished up our late dinner!)
The shadows shrouding the walk between the alley (where I was allowed to park the Princess) and the Lavender Lady were only slightly shallower than those I’d encountered in Nevermore this evening. We really needed some landscape lights back here.
I’d take a candlelit lantern at this point.
Fearing Ms. Hettie might mistake me for a prowler if I used my flashlight to traverse the walkway, I made do with the intermittent moonlight. Walking at a pace which snails would find laughable, I finally made it to my door, my toes remaining unscathed for the first time tonight. Win!
My victory lasted precisely three paces.
The same toes which Mr. Grindle’s crutch repeatedly mashed and I stubbed against a tombstone were abused once more when they came to an abrupt halt against the metal joint of my roommate’s suitcase. Which she’d thoughtfully left lying just inside the door. No longer needing to stay silent I gave full voice to the sentiments felt by my beleaguered digits, this venting allowed me to catch myself before kicking the suitcase with the same foot in retaliation for the pain and suffering it caused (who says a fool can’t learn?).
Me (borrowing the profanity filter from The Good Place): “Holy mother forking shirt balls! Steel-toed Forking boots, part of my first Forking paycheck needs to fund the purchase of Forking steel-toed boots.”
While I hopped about yelling Beatrice stuck her head out of the kitchen.
Beatrice: “While not a traditional greeting, I’ll take it. Hello Phoebe.”
Continuing to hop around, I glared in her general direction while my litany of questionable language streamed on unabated. I wonder if Wood would look at my toes to ascertain if they sustained any hairline fractures this evening…
Beatrice (unfazed by spectacle I presented, waved her hand towards her baggage): “I’ll pick those up in a second. Come into the kitchen. I fixed snacks.”
The swinging door swooshed back and forth when she went back into the kitchen fanning the pleasant aromas of sautéed onions, garlic, and basil in my direction. Snacks? Deciding it was pure foolishness to hop on one foot down a hallway strewn with bags, boxes and a crate (Seriously? A crate? I don’t remember hauling this much stuff to the airport), I put both feet on the floor and threaded my way through the maze.
Opening the kitchen door with care, I scanned the floor before looking at a rather amused Beatrice and the platter of bruschetta she held in her hands.
Beatrice: “No new objects in here to trip over in here I’m afraid.”
Placing the platter on the table between us, she waited until I sat down before dividing the tomato topped toast between our two plates.
Beatrice: “Senior dance tonight? I didn’t think the Center was open this late.”
Me (needing a moment to chew and swallow before answering): “Nothing so exciting. Forgot to turn my meter off, got a late fare.”
Beatrice (arching an eyebrow): “Someone give you a hard time?”
Me: “No, just a weird guy. Good tipper. Speaking of weird, what’s up with Ms. Hettie?”
Beatrice (delicately nibbling her little slice of heaven): “You met our landlady? By the way, do not ever call her that.”
Me: “She accused me of being a thief.”
Beatrice (snorted): “Seriously? You met her? And she conversed with you? Did someone introduce you two?”
Me (muttering): “Technically we spoke if you call throwing accusations and general unhelpfulness speaking.”
Beatrice (cocking her head): “No you don’t get it, she doesn’t talk to anyone unless introduced to them. Ever.”
Me: “She wasn’t shy with me.”
Beatrice (hand hovering over her plate): “What happened?”
Describing my fruitless quest of locating the mythical storage area, the general crabbiness of Ms. Hettie and her accusatory air to Beatrice I finally appreciated the ridiculousness of the entire episode. The only hitch in the giddy-up? I still had an island of boxes in the middle of my room which is starting to morph into an oddly shaped laundry pile.
Beatrice (looked thoughtful while she polished off her portion of the late night snack): “Maybe she likes you? I am not sure. She’s not rude to me, but quirky I suppose could come off the same way…”
Me (finishing off my food, I grabbed our plates and put them in the sink): “Well if you could show me where the storage area is I’d be grateful. Maybe Ms. Hettie will come by while were moving stuff, and you can witness her hostility towards me first hand.”
Beatrice: “How about tomorrow? Early? If you get up around six, I can show you the building before I head to work.”
Me: “Sounds like a plan.”
The early bird catches the worm, right?