What could it mean? I looked at the plain white postcard again. In fancy calligraphy was “I’ll see you Friday...7 p.m. at The Inn.” Shelby had the only Inn I knew of, a forty-minute drive. It’s quite a fancy place with pillars and ballrooms...more fancy than what I’m used to. The postmark showed that the card was mailed on Monday. Who would do this?
Walking inside from the mailbox, the phone rang. I picked it up and said, “Hello.” I received a click and buzz as a response. They hung up. This day was becoming stranger by the minute. I tapped my hand with the postcard in contemplation. Should I go to The Inn, or not? Maybe if someone went with me. I called Judy.
She picked up on the third ring. “Hello.”
“Hi, Judy…this is Grace. I was wondering if you were free on Friday evening.”
“What’s going on Friday evening?” I could tell she was sipping her tea.
“Well, I’m not really sure to tell you the truth. I received this blank postcard that reads ‘I’ll see you Friday at 7 p.m. at The Inn.’ The only Inn I can think of is in Shelby, but I don’t feel comfortable going alone. Are you up for an adventure?” I was praying she would say yes
“I’m looking at my calendar…and…oh, oh…sorry Grace, I do have plans that night. It sounds like a lot of fun going to The Inn. I hope you have a great time.”
“Well, I may not even go. It sounds so weird. I also just had someone call me and they hung up after I answered.”
“Grace, don’t get paranoid. Just go and have a good time. What do you have to lose?” She took another sip of her tea. “Well, I have to go. Someone’s knocking on the door. Maybe I’m going to be invited to a special place, too.”
I laughed at my friend. “Okay, Judy. I’ll talk to you later.” I hung up still wondering whether to go to The Inn or not. Maybe Judy’s right. What do I have to lose? I should enjoy the mystery of it all. However, the controlling person inside me was struggling to know every detail of this event.
Friday night came. I dressed in style choosing the aqua sequined dress. I somehow felt protected by wearing my silver cross necklace. It gave me the confidence needed for this evening. As I was putting on my heels, the doorbell rang. I opened the door to a young man neatly dressed in black attire…and carrying a bouquet of roses…yellow ones, which are my favorite.
“Good evening, Ms. Barnes. My name is James, and I am to escort you to The Inn. These are for you,” handing me the roses. “Are you ready to go?”
When I found my voice again, I muttered, “Sure…I think I’m ready.” He offered his arm, which I accepted. We walked to the driveway where a black limousine was parked. I gasped and stopped. James smiled and encouraged me on. He opened the back door where I sat down in utter luxury. The roses smelled so wonderful! Was I dreaming?
When we arrived at The Inn, James jumped out and opened my door. He bowed and indicated for me to enter The Inn. I slowly walked to the door and entered into the marble floored lobby. I walked to the counter where a nice young lady smiled and said, “Ms. Barnes, we’ve been expecting you.”
“This way please.” She walked from behind the counter and led me to some double doors down the hall. She opened the door to a room full of people.
I was trying to focus on them all at once and couldn’t make any of them out. Is this what shock felt like? Just then, Judy came over and took my arm.
“Welcome to your birthday party!”
“Birthday party? My birthday is December 24. What is this, Judy?”
“You wouldn’t be surprised on December 24, so we calculated carefully the halfway mark. Surprised?” she grinned.
“You could give an old lady a heart attack…you know that? It’s a good thing I’m only 29.” What was that strange look she gave me?
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