Our Loose Blogging consortium includes Anu, Ashok, Conrad, Gaelikaa, Ginger, Judy, Magpie 11, Maria, Ramana and yours truly. Each of us when available, will contribute a piece for the topic for the week. The call of work, study or family concerns, often prevents some members from taking part on the day or indeed the week in question. This weeks offering was chosen by Ashok
It had been a very difficult and stressful few weeks for all concerned. The house was full, there were more bodies than beds and EJ was tired. At last the chatter, singing and banter of the evening had stopped and the place was quiet and settled for the night, but for the normal creaks and groans of a sixty year old house. Perhaps the walls were saying goodbye!
EJ struggled to find comfort for himself on the sofa bed, It was not long enough to stretch his long and lean legs. He longed for a cigarette, but the packet was emptied an hour earlier. The most he could expect was to rest his weary bones while replaying the events of the day in his head. He was not happy with how all the events were handled. Having her in a bed in the next room was not his idea, and if the truth were told he found it a little unnerving. At least the sliding doors to the other room were closed. He didn’t need to see her.
In the dark hours before dawn he drifted into the half world between sleep and wakefulness.
He was back in the bedroom one floor above and a child of seven once more. It was summer and difficult to sleep when it was still daylight outside and voices trailed in the open window. His older siblings were playing Rounders in the field at the bottom of the garden. He wanted to be out there, even if it meant fielding in the tall grass of the outfield. He jumped out of bed to look out the window.
It was then he heard the signal: His mother was running silently up the stairs to reprimand him. Like all his siblings, he knew when she was on the prowl or warpath; the medals acted like a warning bell. Two silver medals – one quite large – were always worn on a long chain round her neck. The medals rattled and clanged with every move. At times it was a comforting sound, especially if you were sick and in bed. The medals were cue to a hug or a tempting titbit of food.
Suddenly EJ sat bolt upright bumping his knee in the process!
He heard the medals! There was the definite sound of metal on metal and there was a move in the sliding doors. After sixty years the doors were stiff and difficult to open. Someone was trying to open them now! The hair on the back of his neck stood on end. It was a very long time since EJ invoked the help of the Mother of God, but he prayed more in that moment than he had done in years. She was coming back into the room! All the misdeeds of his youth played out before him and here was his mother raised from her death bed coming to haunt him. Was she coming to fulfil the promise to leave the imprint of her five fingers on him?
The doors inched open a little more…..
In sauntered Snooks the cat, with tail held proudly in the air and her bell gently tinkling!
Suddenly EJ laughed! A loud and hearty laugh. The idea of his late mother who in latter years had shrunk to half his size putting him over her knee and spanking him until she left the imprint of her five fingers, was just too funny.
The laugh was what EJ needed. The wake was over and in a few short hours he would join his siblings to lay their dear mother to her rest.