Monday, March 22, 2021

Microstory 1586: Leave For Dead

I was supposed to be watering my neighbor’s plants while she was out of town, but I completely forgot all week. When I finally get inside, all of her plants are dead...and so is my neighbor.

I’m not the only person who failed to water her plants. Over the past few months she’s had an extreme decline in her health. As her health deteriorated, she just kind of faded away. She became a shadow of her former self. I had a conversation with her one night that was the last I spoke with her. She said that she didn’t know how much longer she’d last. I think I’ll go visit her again tomorrow to say my goodbyes. I’d be okay with the fact that I don’t remember the woman’s face, but I do remember her voice. She used to sound kind of annoying...but now she sounds like an angel. I’ll call you tomorrow. Hopefully I’ll see you tomorrow, Ms. Bailey. Goodbye. RIP Ms. Bailey. I haven’t been writing much lately because I’ve been so busy. Every day I leave work and have to rush home and eat dinner, then rush right back to work until I go to bed. I feel like I’m doing nothing with my life. I wish I could be a professional shopper or a sex addict. I’ve been considering joining a couple of...

Conclusion groups, but I’m too afraid to tell my story. I mean, am I responsible for her death? How long did it take? Was she lying there in pain for an hour? An entire day? Had I gone over there to water her plants like I promised I would, might she still be alive? No one knows what I did; how I neglected her, and I just want to put the whole thing behind me, but the guilt is eating me up. On my way to the funeral, I debate whether I should tell her family what I did, but I’m leaning towards keeping my mouth shut. It won’t help them, and will only serve to assuage my own remorse, and even that probably won’t help anyway. It does no one any good. I check my watch, and the obituary three times, but realize that I’m not early, or in the wrong place. It’s just that I and one other guy are the only ones who have showed up. I ask him how he knew Ms. Bailey, and he tells me that he sold her a lot of indoor plants over the years. “That woman was a serial killer,” he says with a laugh. “She just kept needing to replace them over and over again.” He also says he always enjoyed delivering them to her, even though it wasn’t a service that they provided, because they had such great conversation. He explains that she was agoraphobic, and never left the house, so it is unlikely she ever intended to leave town. It dawns on me that the whole thing was a ruse, and Ms. Bailey just wanted a second person to talk to. I failed her more than I knew.

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