The ringing telephone sounded like high-pitched thunder to Marion as she struggled with the blankets. She finally freed a hand and picked up the receiver. “Hello?”
“Good morning, Marion,” the voice replied. “It’s Dave.”
“Dave who?” Marion grunted.
“Your husband!? Wake up, Sweetie. It’s almost nine.”
Marion sat up and tried to sound normal. “I’m sorry, Dear. I was up almost until two doing that rewrite for SciFi Weekly.”
“Yeah, but you’ve got to get moving. I left a list of errands on the table and I noticed the dinner dishes were still in the sink this morning.”
“Okay, I know,” Marion replied. “I’ll catch up. See you tonight.” She hung up the phone, grabbed her robe, and stumbled to the bedroom door. She opened the door and looked down the hall. She pulled her robe around her to ward off the chill. The plaster walls transformed to the cold, gray stone of a medieval castle. She noticed a dank smell. Around the corner ran a fair-haired maiden chased by a knight. He raised his broadsword to strike . . .
Marion glanced at her watch. “Almost noon,” she thought. “Maybe I’ll grab a burger for lunch.” The traffic light turned green, but she hesitated as a Prius coming from the left sped through the intersection in front of her. “Let’s get ‘em boys.” she said.
She instantaneously was moved from the driver’s seat to the passenger’s. The officer that was driving now accelerated the ’36 Hudson Terraplane police cruiser in pursuit of the gangsters. He switched on the siren and its wail startled the cattle in the pastures they sped past. The dust from rural Texas road clouded their vision, but they didn’t lose sight of their prey. The passenger side door of the Ford Roadster they chased swung open and the crook stepped out on the running board. He raised his Colt revolver and fired at the pursuing Hudson. The windshield shattered and the driver slumped over the steering wheel. The cruiser careened off the road toward a large oak . . .
Marion heard the door from the garage open and Dave walked into the house. “Marion, I’m home,” he called.
“I’m in the kitchen, Dear. Dinner is almost ready.”
Dave saw the dry-cleaning hanging in the closet as he put his dress shoes away and retrieved his slippers. The packages that were setting by the front door waiting to go the shipping service were missing. He walked into the kitchen from where a tasty smell wafted through the rest of the house. The stainless steel sink was empty and shining. “It looks like you’ve had a busy day. Did you have any time to write?”
“I wrote the third chapter of my novel and chose a title for it. I’m going to call it, Massacre at Edinburgh Castle. And I wrote a short story for Crime and Punishment Journal. Maybe tomorrow I can type them into the computer. But I’ve got them all up here.” Marion pointed to her head with the handle of the wooden spoon she used to stir the savory sauce on the stove. “Take a seat at the table and . . .” Marion paused in the middle of her sentence. “Listen,” she said.
“What is it?” Dave asked quietly.
“I think I heard a tiger growling in the backyard!”
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