The Oddest Thing (practically sane)
It was surprising to me when she freaked out at the fire alarm’s high-pitched beeping in the house she had purchased to house her, myself, and my two kids. It was a modern house with a modern alarm system. At first, we closed the bedroom door against the every-five-minute BEEP. The next morning she went through all the unpacked boxes looking for a 9v battery. BEEP. She left for work in a rage.
That evening, when she returned from work, she seemed to have forgotten the annoyance. She entered the house with her typical fanfare, a celebratory yelp, “Cocktails!”
“Sorry,” I said, “I didn’t have time to go get 9v batteries.”
She went into the garage and pulled out an extension ladder. The offending alarm was at the top of a long flight of dark hardwood stairs. I held the ladder as she climbed. BEEP. She twisted the alarm and pulled it out of it’s mounting bracket. The plan was to pull out the 9v battery until we could replace it. She popped the battery out tossed it to me as she was coming back down the ladder. BEEP.
“What the fuck?” she yelled.
As I said, it was a modern house and this alarm system had hardwired backup power. She climbed the ladder again and disconnected the alarm from the bracket again. There were several brightly colored wires connected to and holding the alarm in place above her head.
“Give me those wire cutters,” she said. “In the junk drawer in the kitchen.”
“Wait,” I said, “I’ll go get a battery now.”
“Just throw me the wire cutters.”
BEEP. Snip, snip. Silence.
She came back down, visibly pleased with herself and polished off her glass of wine and started another.
Read more Short-Short Stories from John.