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Intruders

“It’s time to rest, dear.” Greta touched her husband’s sleeve and curled her cheek around the side of his shoulder. She followed his gaze through the window into the darkness beyond.

“I can’t go to bed yet, Greta,” Bert answered in a harsh whisper. “There’s a trespasser!”

She sighed and nuzzled closer to him. He was confused, she knew, and it would take a while for him to understand.

“No one’s trespassing, dear.” Greta said.

Bert pulled away far enough to turn his head and look his wife in the eyes. His were cold and bloodshot in the moonlight. “Are you calling me a liar?” he accused.

She shook her head and ran a tender hand along his cheek. “No, of course not, dear. It’s just that …”

Just then a light flickered to life on the other side of the glass. A young man appeared from the dark recesses, baseball bat cocked over his shoulder, ready to swing.

“Who’s there?” he called, voice muffled through the window.

“See there!” Bert barked, whisper more urgent than before. “I told you we had a trespasser!”

Tears welled in Greta’s eyes. It pained her to see Bert so worked up. If he could just see the truth — the Turners were a lovely young couple, really. Greta had been tickled when they moved in with their children, brought the house back to life.

But then, she had been gone a good, long while. Much longer than Bert had.

It would just take time.

“Who’s out there?” the young man called, hand on the knob of the front door now.

“Why, he’s coming at us !” Bert croaked, and he crouched in front of the door, ready to fight.

And then, Brad Turner turned on his porch light and stepped outside.

There was no one there.

Published inFlash Fiction

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