Tadum and Vernon

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
Just sat down and spat out a fraction of a story. Two people with clashing lifestyles. Not sure what to do with it. New to this site, so tell me what you think!!

Submitted: July 11, 2008

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Submitted: July 11, 2008

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A wince spread across her face as she reached for the door knob. She could see the crooked smile through the peephole and immediately knew it was a mistake to answer the door. She hesitantly opened it only a few inches, keeping a safe barrier between herself and the visitor.

"What is it?" she demanded uninvitingly.

He quickly grabbed the hat off of his head and began turning it nervously in his leathery hands.

"Hey neighbor, I, I uhh, I was wondering if there was um, any possible way I could borrow, uh, huh huh, some uh sugar?... I'm uhh.. baking.. a uhh thing." His smile covered his face now and she could see that two of his yellow teeth were missing. His eyes were deeply sunken into his skull, and began watering because he refused to blink. It seemed as if he were savoring every moment of her presence.

"I don't have any."

This did nothing to deter his smile. "Oh..well...I-"

She began closing the door but he stepped forward so she could now feel his warm breath on her face. His voice took on a desperate tone and his eyes hinted something somber now, "Please.. I'm lonely.. I... I just, want to t-talk"

Tadum liked to think her life was peaceful. Others would call it dull. Some wouldn't even call it living. Tadum didn't care, she was content with her quiet existence. She preferred it that way. An easily frightened creature, Tadum shyed away from adventure, obscenity, excitement of all sorts, and sugar too. Yes, even her food was bland. Rice cakes, tofu, celery, and such. She was glad in her world of beige and monotony. She took pride in her careful schedule which was consistent and perfect.

So with all this in mind, it is understandable why she was terribly disgruntled when she learned that her new neighbor was a bit of an oddball. Not at all someone she could live by peacefully. And it was an even greater distubance when this strange and dangerous looking man knocked on her door with, God forbid, a favor in mind.

"Mr. Ehhh..."

"V-Vernon J. Turner, Miss, but please do c- call me Vernon."

"Mr. Turner, I really am very busy right now and have no time to talk." And before he could squeeze out one word about a raincheck she slammed the door in poor Vernon's face. She shivered with the thought of how close he had gotten to her. His warm breath all over her face. Those rotting teeth only inches from her. The unpleasant encounter left her feeling extremely dirty and immediately began preparing the bathroom for an earlier-than-usual shower.

Tadum's childhood had been occupied by a dream of becoming a teacher. However, as she grew into an adult she found that she increasingly disliked people, and discovered that there was nothing about children that she did not loathe. Teaching was not an ideal profession for her, in fact, anything involving other human beings probably would not be ideal for Tadum. She settled on the next best thing to teaching: editing elementary level textbooks before they went into production. To her delight, this job can be done from home, so she rarely left her apartment. This had always been to her great satisfaction until the oddball moved in across the hall. Not only could she sense his unclean presence through the walls but he a was a noisy and intrusive neighbor.

She knew he always hesitated by her door during his comings and goings down the hall. Her acute hearing picked up everything, though his heavy and irregular trudge was something that could not be missed by a half-deaf armadillo.


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