Comings and Goings

200 words. First posted on


She opens the door before I have the chance to ring the bell. She is not a spring chicken anymore but what I’d describe as a glamorous granny. Skimpily dressed and highly perfumed.

“Are you Brian?” she asks, “I expected someone younger”.

I am confused and mumble: “I just came…” but she interrupts me.

“No matter, we’ll have to see what we can do about that”. “You got them?” she continues.

I think she means my credentials. I am about to show her my ID badge as she looks left and right down the road with a frown.

“We can’t be too careful; there are a lot of nosey-parkers in this street”. She warns.

I am almost dragged inside the house when I hear the sound of approaching footsteps on the gravel.
A young man carrying a newspaper and wearing a carnation in his buttonhole asks at the top of his voice:

“Hi, are you Beryl?”

She gasps and pushes me away, shouting:

“You have a bloody nerve trying to take advantage of me” and, after admitting the newcomer into the house, shuts the door in my face.

And all I was there to do, was to read the meter.


© ionicus 2023
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