My mind definitely wanders. I do love to daydream. And you could say I have an over-active imagination. So is it any wonder this recent WordPress Daily Post really tickled my fancy?
“You walk into your home to find a couple you don’t know sitting in your living room, eating a slice of cake. Tell us what happens next.”
Well to begin with, I’m not sure I would have been more startled by the strangers in my house or the fact they were eating cake. I never have cake in my house. Okay, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration. But only slight.
First of all, I don’t bake. I’m not a sweet lover. From time to time I get a craving, but they are few and far
between; and, when I do, it tends to be for ice cream or shortbread cookies or a slice of lemon tart (more tart than sweet by the way, nothing I like better than a tart tart) — not for multiple layers of icing, whipped cream and batter.
But who cares, really? This isn’t about my food preferences, is it?
So. I got home to find two people I’d never laid eyes on before, calmly sitting in my living room, enjoying a snack. Cake, to be precise. For some reason I wasn’t alarmed. Curious, absolutely. Maybe a little shocked. But frightened? No.
Chocolate cake. Dark chocolate cake. And very moist, by the looks of it. With mounds of light, fluffy frosting. That’s what they were eating. I thought you’d like to know. Details are important, I think, don’t you?
My first inclination was to believe I screwed up. That somehow, I walked into the wrong apartment. It’s entirely possible, you know, because I have the world’s worst sense of direction. In fact I have, on occasion, gotten off the elevator on the wrong floor (when I wasn’t paying attention, which is often the case) and found myself trying to get into someone else’s apartment. Thank God whenever it’s happened no one was home or else I’d be writing this from prison, having been arrested for breaking and entering.
After looking around out of the corner of my eye, however, I realized I was, indeed, home. In my home. There were my cats, right there, lounging on their favourite pieces of furniture, licking themselves. Not paying the slightest bit of attention to any of us humans. Which in itself was a bit peculiar. Cats, as we all know, can be quite standoffish and wary of strangers.
Sundance, my ginger tabby is gregarious, to say the least. So the fact he was hanging out with the ‘guests’ wasn’t much of a surprise. But Bartlett, for all his considerable girth, is a wuss at the best of times. So seeing him looking casual as all get out was definitely surprising. But they were fully conscious and didn’t seemed drugged or any the worse for wear, so there was no cause for concern there.
Plus my belongings seemed to be intact, as well. Nothing was amiss.
Other than the man and woman sitting on my sofa, that is.
I did what any civilized, well-mannered person would do. I said “hello”. Don’t ask me why, but it didn’t occur to me to ask how they’d gotten in. At least not at first. They looked perfectly normal. In their mid-to-late forties, I guessed; and well dressed. Attractive. Elegant. Well groomed. Clean.
“Bonjour”, they responded. And went right back to eating, clearly enjoying every forkful.
All the while I was wondering why they hadn’t sat at the dining room table, instead. Wouldn’t that have been more comfortable, not to mention practical? I hate balancing plates on my lap. Suddenly I realized I wasn’t being a very good hostess. I asked if they wanted something to drink, to which they answered, “Non, merci”.
All righty, then.
And that’s when I decided to check my voice mail to see if the doorman had called upstairs to let me know I had guests. Nope, no messages. No emails from anyone, either.
My need to know was beginning to get the better of me. Come on, be honest. Wouldn’t you have been consumed with curiosity??
Before I could say a word, though, the woman stood up and took the now-empty plate and two forks to the kitchen, where she deposited them in the sink. I followed her, as you might expect. You’ll notice she didn’t rinse them off or put them in the dishwasher. She just left them for me to clean. The nerve! The rest of the cake, and a bottle of champagne (good champagne too), which was cooling in a bucket I don’t recall as being mine, were on the counter.
This situation was getting curiouser and curiouser by the second. When we returned to the living room, her husband (yes, I’d noticed they were both wearing rings) cleared his throat and smiled at me. They both smiled, actually.
“When would be zee good time for you?” he asked in heavily-accented English. “A good time for what?”, I responded, shaking my head trying to make sense of this. In hindsight, I wonder why I never called the police. Or screamed for help.
“Ahhhhhhhhh … you ‘ave aucune idee pourquoi we are ‘ere”, he replied, shrugging his shoulders and glancing at his wife with a surprised look on his face. Clearly they knew what was going on. I was the one in the dark.
“Correct”, I answered, folding my arms across my chest. “Perhaps you could fill me in?”
Yes, I was getting a bit testy.
A few sentences were exchanged between them, so quietly I couldn’t make out one word they said. Then they turned back to me, with huge grins on their faces.
Which is exactly when the buzzer on my alarm clock started ringing.