Hello, My Fellow Blogging Buddies,
I am attempting to something I haven’t done before. Notice that the title says Chapter 1? Well, I’m in the midst of writing a story. Thing is, at this point, I really don’t know how many chapters there will be just yet. As of this moment, 10/22/2019 at 8pm, I’m beginning Chapter 4. Each chapter will consist of a little over a thousand words each. This is being written as part of “The 31 Days of October Challenge” that our hostess, Laura, of “Lauravent69” is throwing. I do hope you enjoy it, but what I would really appreciate is constructive criticism. Odd request? Maybe. But, I can handle it. Thank you in advance. Beckie
“This Is My House!”
“Okay, if you just sign and date this last document here, Mr. Jacobs and initial in this box, you will be the proud owner of “Shangrila”, as you referred this lovely home to be.”
Julie handed off her pen to Mr. Jacobs with a smile from ear to ear. She was ecstatic to have finally sold the house that had been on the market for nearly three years. She never understood why this home was so difficult to sell, but other realtors didn’t have much luck either. They all claimed this was place was a little off, weird happenings. Sure, after three years the property needed quite a bit of work done to it, but Mr. Jacobs stated he was looking for a fixer-upper.
Mr. Jacobs finished signing and initialing and handed the pen back to Julie. “Please, Julie, please call me Hank. Mr. Jacobs was my father, I’m just plain ole’ Hank.” The two shook hands and Julie smiled politely, “Yes, Hank. Hank, it is then. Well, Hank, congratulations to you. I hope you can restore this house into a lovely home that you imagine it to be.” Julie was a bit antsy and just wanted to leave. She chalked it up to be a long day and wanted to go home.
Hank was smiling as much as Julie. He had let go of their handshake and began meandering about his new house. “… Thanks, Julie. Maybe when I’m done fixing this old house up, you can come on over for a visit.” Hank turned to her while leaning on the mantel over the fireplace. Just then, the mantel fell off right from underneath him.
Both Julie and Hank jumped as the mantel collapsed and hit the hearth with a loud rumble as dust and debris kicked up. “Oh, my God! Mr. Jacobs, are you alright sir?”, Julie rushed over to see if the mantel accidentally hit Hank.
With a boisterous laugh, Hank kicked the mantel off to the side and replied to a nervous Julie, “I don’t think my father, Mr. Jacobs felt a thing.”, and both of them laughed. “I’m sorry, I meant Hank, Mr. Jacobs, Oh, Damnit! I meant, Hank.” All flustered, Julie stood back again. “Hey, there”, Hank clearly noticed that Julie was horrified, and may think he would want to back out of the deal at that moment. “Julie, it’s alright, I’m fine, I didn’t get hurt.”, He turned in a circle, “See, no blood.” He smiled at her and nodded reassurance.
“Okay, Hank.”, Julie let out a sigh of relief as she headed to the front door. “I guess I will leave you here with your new home. I hope you’re able to make something of this place like it was back in the 1940s. This was a beautiful home back then.”
Before Julie was stepping out of the doorway, Hank stopped her. “Excuse me, Julie? By any chance, do you have any old pictures of this house from back then? I’d really like to recreate her back to her original glory.” Hank asked with anticipation. “Sure, Hank. I’m sure I can find some pictures of this home from back then.” Hank thanked Julie and they exchanged their good-byes, and Hank closed the front door.
Hank leaned against the front door and muttered to himself, ‘Okay, now… don’t you fall down too, alright?’, as he laughed looking at the broken mantel on the floor across the way.
Three weeks had passed since the signing of Hanks mortgage and as scheduled, the dumpster was dropped off in the driveway. His own Dodge Ram was filled with tools. Soon his friend Joe and brother Alan would arrive. Today was “Demo Day!”, as he loved sounding like a real professional carpenter like the ones on HGTV.
The guys pulled up and they unloaded all the tools they would need. Hank instructed the guys to just leave their lunches in the cooler he left by the back door. All the men held on to their 16-ounce coffees as Hank took them for the grand old tour of the beat-up old home. Alan was pretty amazed that his little brother scooped this place up, “Danm, man, this place is unbelievable, how many bedrooms? Five, right? Once you fix her up, she’ll sell for at least ten times what you paid for her.” Alan kept leaning into each room, scanning the potential, “Yeah, little bro, you did well on this one.” Alan stated with pride.
Hanks’s friend Joe, on the other hand, was sipping his cup of joe and nodding as he peered into each room. He was trying to estimate in his head how long it would take to accomplish doing all that needed to be done in order to flip this old heap.
Hank slid past Alan in the hallway and confirmed with Al, “Yeah, five bedrooms.”, Then shoulder bumped Joe, “So, anything man? Any opinion at all?”, Hank questioned him as looking for approval. “You haven’t said a word since you got here, what’s the deal?” Hank studied Joe’s face. Joe turned and faced Hank, “Listen, buddy, I told you I could only come here after my shift at work. How much work you think we’ll be able to get done around here with just the three of us working on this?”
“… Joe, cool your jets, I’ve got it all figured out. I have some other guys from the site were working on that will be able to help out too. I don’t want this to be a rush job, I want this to be a real gem when she’s done.” Hank replied with enthusiasm. “So, come on guys, let’s finish the coffee and get cranking on this baby!” Hank announced and took off out the front door to grab his tools. Alan and Joe followed Hank’s lead and tossed their empty coffee cups in the dumpster.
The day started off with ripping out the cabinets in the kitchen and tearing out the old linoleum floor that must have been laid down in the 1970s. The men busted their humps busting the old kitchen to the studs and making several trips to the dumpster. It was around 12:30pm when they all agreed to take a break and have lunch.
Hank grabbed the cooler and opened it to pull out the lunches He, Joe, and Alan dropped in there. Hank looked a little puzzled for a moment, maybe he accidentally left his lunch in the truck. He went back outside to fetch it, but it wasn’t there either. So, he went back into the house. “Alan? did you see my lunch, didn’t I put it in the cooler with yours this morning?” Alan nodded an ‘I dunno” while stuffing his face. Hank, scratched his head looking into the empty cooler, thinking to himself, ‘…What the hell did I do with it then?’
(Continuation to follow on October 24th., Thursday, Chapter 2)
Picture: Google Images