All five of us stood on the back porch looking at the lawn.
Molly, our youngest, goes “Who would do such a thing?” She was still in shock.
Nobody spoke. Her two older sisters had worked it out. I could feel it. I could sense them working it out. Her Mother knew exactly who did such a thing because it was her big idea to do such a thing. But of course, as always, yours truly ends up holding the smoking gun.
Our back garden has seen some changes through the millenia. It has been under the sea a few thousand years ago; go down six inches and it’s beach sand. It’s been home to a british military camp during the first world war. It was planted out in potatoes after that. It was a grassy field with sheep grazing just before our home was built on it.
I see the sea is coming back again. Shift happens!
One Saturday last year, I was busy with a matter of life and death when my two younger daughters, Grace and Molly, asked it they could borrow my metal detector to “look for buried treasure” in our back garden. I agreed and continued watching the athletics on telly.
I’m not sure how much time had passed. An hour? Maybe more? I heard a scream coming from the back garden. I then heard Molly’s crying. Funny thing that, parents can recognise one child’s cry from another’s.
I ran outside to discover my lawn now resembled a golf course. There were little sand bunkers dotted all over. Somebody had been busy.
The girls ran towards me. Just then my wife and eldest daughter arrived back from shopping. Upon seeing her mother, Molly changed course in the blink of an eye and went straight to her mammy. Mothers seem to train them from an early age. It’s called “Run to your favourite.”
Before I go on, let me rewind to an incident three years previous.
On a Christmas morning our pet, Gizmo the cat, was found out along the roadway, stiff as a board. He had been the victim of a hit and run. These things happen when animals live close to roads. Neither my wife nor myself wanted the girls to see Gizmo, in this state, you can imagine. And with it being Christmas…well, you know.
“Bury it.” My wife ordered.
I obeyed. I picked a spot out of the way, near the back of the garden.
I was slightly emotional, even though I wouldn’t class myself as an animal lover, this didn’t feel right. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it but something inside was telling me this was a mistake. But I buried it anyway.
I think we made up some story to keep the kids happy. Like Gizmo had gone to help Santa in the north pole. Soon after, we obtained a new kitten from a friend in the local pet rescue centre. Everything was hunky-dory, until…
The ghost of Gizmo came back to haunt me that Saturday last year. He had been wearing a collar with a stainless steel name tag. Lovely! Just lovely!
My wife took the girls inside for lemonade and a chat. While I filled in the bunkers. The cat was a mere skeleton now. But sure enough, there it was, his name tag looking up at me, “Gizmo.”
The cat was out of the bag. As usual, I was the bad daddy for a day or two after that. I was the sort of person “who would do such a thing.” I learned my lesson…I should have listened to my gut. I should have buried it in the neighbour’s garden.
Thank you for reading,
In response to http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/04/03/prompt-back-door/