General Fiction posted November 13, 2019

Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
how to choose between the graveyard and the crematorium

Ever after

by Iza Deleanu

            This is a story about how to see the bright side of life, when you are living next door to… the Ever After. Now that I got your attention let’s jump into the story. Sometimes I am amazed how the city’s construction developers plan the construction of a new building into an old neighborhood. The realtors for sure will have a fun time to resell the properties after. They will have to use persuasive techniques and magic to make that property appealing to the market. Hmmm! What should be the buzz word for the seller? Grave yarding? No, I got it…. It is going to be “eternal HALLOWEEN.”

            So here is me being caught in this advertised spider web, searching for the property of my dreams. I open the newspaper and read the following: “Beautiful apartment situated in the core of downtownish, walking distance to shopping malls and University, easy access to public transportation.” I say to myself, this property rings nice dollars’ signs to my ears.  I am picking up the phone, dialing the number, and trying to be funny when I say, “You got me at the walking distance, but what about the view?” The realtor laughingly answers: “Well let’s have a sightseeing tour and you can get a personal touch with the desired walking distance…. Anyway, if you are a fan of Halloween, you will love it, because you will have the spirit of Halloween for the whole year…for years!”

            Hand in hand with my curiosity, I am going very excited about the price as I meet with the magic man, the realtor.  So, I am getting there, singing … wow Halloween here I come. I am not a witch, but I got in my genes the right ingredients for this adventure: black cat with emerald vision, small kid, Mr. Adam, the serious husband. The realtor is waiting for me in front of the building. Nothing fishy so far… tall, five story building, majestic entrance, fabulous interior, yard, gazebo, huge hallways, relaxing area on every floor, swimming pool and a gym. In one word, this building has all the extras that I have dreamed off and as a bonus looks like a chateau. In one world, as they are saying in the magazine, you get a touch of elegance and finesse. The apartment is located on the fifth floor. I am saying to myself, “wow top of the world - roof view, lucky me!

            The rooms are large and bright. The walls rain down a fine tapestry of joyful nuances, the appliances are … brand new. It seems like nobody has lived in this space for a long time. It must be the El Halloween effect. Worried I am searching for ghosts, but they probably fled the scene with the last owner. Finally, I am reaching the room that has the balcony and the promised view. Here goes nothing! Excited I am opening the door and wow… what a view. Majestic green covers the hill in front of me. Rows of trees and monuments are guarding the sleeping crypts of long lasted beauties from centuries, which have finally taken the last resting point from the struggles of life. Battered angels are hiding behind bushes of roses.  I guess we could, play hide and seek here with my cat, because I will never let my kid wonder through this labyrinth of sorrow. I say loudly to the realtor:” Ok so we have a grave yard, and what the heck is that white building in front of my nose?”

            The realtor responds: “This pretty lady is the Funeral Home, and right after starts the” walking distance” towards the line of life: the shopping mall, the University, the downtown.” I am speechless thinking: “Darling, what would you like today, a barbeque, or gravy?”
            The realtor looks at me worried: “Madame are you ok? I know the view is … quite shocking but we can talk about an incentive on the final price.”
            I don’t say a word. Pensive I am sitting on the chair in the balcony thinking: “Before I will have a conversation with my kid about the marvels of this world, it looks like I must give him a quick introduction of “ashes to ashes and dust to dust.” On the other hand, the price is good, but will I be happy?  Instead of smelling flowers to smell the barbeque from that Funeral Home? Let’s say I will buy it, what if I want to sell it later, how much do I have to lose to let it go? For sure this is not a one-day decision. I must talk with Mr. Adam and see if he would like to pay for the location if he will be charged half of the price for the view. I stand up and return my gaze to the realtor. “Sir, this apartment is gorgeous, the building is amazing, but I must talk with my husband about the “other details”. In our family, we have a democratic rule: I must bring them to check the view, and then we will decide. Please, let me check with Mr. Adam, and I will give you a call in the afternoon.” The realtor, broken hearted says: “This sounds fair, but just so you know if you guys are making a move I can let it go with twenty-five percent off the original price advertised.”

            Finally, I am home. Mr. Adam is waiting for me in the living room. He tries to guess what my mood is, but I keep my emotions to myself. Finally, he breaks the silence:” So, how was it? Did you like it? And by the way I have prepared the dinner, we are having barbeque.” At hearing the last word, my stomach is giving me the signal that I must visit “auntie”. And then my decision is made: “I love barbeque, but do I want to smell it every day?” I turn my gaze back to my husband: “The apartment is wonderful, the price is less than in the newspaper, but there is a problem with the view.” Puzzled he asks me:” What do you mean?”” Well if you want to see the bright side of the life through the lenses of the ever after, then this is the perfect scenario: we will have for free a view of a grave yard and a Funeral Home. How would you like to perform last rites? Would you like a cream Brule or marinated underground?”

            Mr. Adam pets the cat and looks back at me: “I guess it’s a no?!” “I guess you are right. Let’s keep for now the real thing that we have. You know the sunshine all year round, green park, lake and bussing distance. the kid will be happy to walk through a real ravine, and the cat will contemplate lots of birds from our balcony. Anyway, look at the bright side, this was an interesting opportunity, and I think we both choose for the first time… life. If we had said yes to this deal, probably I could have said that we made a deal with the devil. I have learnt a lot today. Not all that sounds perfect, is good for your health. Thanks God, that it saved me the …indigestion.”


Short Story contest entry

1218 words and a realtor slalom in search for the perfect nest. Thank you for reading and for your deefback.
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