If I found out I lived next door to a serial killer, the first thing I’d do is peer in a window.
And I would go out after dark, in my slippers, forgetting to put on my outside clogs. I’d feel like a fool trekking through the thick rhododendron bushes, raccoons gaffing in the shadows.
There would be only one light on, the dim over-head kitchen one, with a scalloped plastic shade, dangling from a chain, a 70s relic. With her back to me, an older woman with long stringy greying hair, in Sponge Bob pajama bottoms, would be chopping something at the counter. Chopping! A woman!
I’d rest my chin on the sill to see if there was blood on the chopping board.
She wouldn’t be chopping. She’d be rolling dough into balls. Baking cookies. Late!
But tomorrow would be Christmas Eve, and I would see her coming out in the same Sponge Bob pajamas to put a plate of them in the mailbox for our carrier; just as my own kids do every year.
We’d eventually meet, through the bushes, and I would find out she was a recently divorced hygienist who had a dream of retiring to somewhere on the edge of the Grand Canyon so she could visit daily and stare down into that dusty dry gaping pit.
I wanted to ask where she stashed her bodies. Instead I asked her over for spearmint tea. Besides discovering spearmint was both our favorite, we had other things in common.
For the Scriptic.org prompt exchange this week, Cheney at http://writerewriteread.com gave me this prompt: You find out your next door neighbor is a serial killer.
I gave Eric Storch at http://sinistralscribblings.comthis prompt: mirror