We are supposed to write in the first person, using the voice of a twelve year old. And use the neighbors, M. and M. Pauley to fill out the story, with Mr. Pauley dying and Mrs. Pauley being evicted.
It was a challenge for me but I think I came through it okay.
I was sitting on the swing on my front porch. It was dusk and I loved to watch the passing parade of people going by. There was old Mr. Jones walking his dog, and right after him came a young couple that I didn’t know. They were holding hands and looked to be about 17 years old or thereabouts anyway. The young guy was moving his hand to the girl’s waist and then it started creeping lower to her butt. I heard a giggle from the girl and had to smile to myself.
I was only twelve but looking forward to the day when I would be able to date. I was already getting advice from my older brother, although I was not sure the advice was any good. He was only fifteen and had only been going out with girls for a few months. Mom wanted us to wait until we were sixteen before we started dating and then she only wanted us going out maybe once a week. Like that’s going to happen.
Oh, there’s Mr. and Mrs. Pauley out on their porch doing pretty much the same as I am. They lived across the street and she was friendly with mom. They had coffee with each other a few times a week. She’s waving now. Guess I better wave back or she will think I am rude and tell mom.
They have six boys but they are all grown and gone now. Don’t think I’ve ever seen them since they never seem to come and visit. There’s a rumor going around the neighborhood that Mr. Pauley is having an affair with some young chick. Wonder who would be interested in that old fart? He is certainly nothing to look at. Guess they are well off, at least that’s what I heard mom saying. Not sure Mrs. P. knows about the affair. If she does, she is certainly keeping calm about it.
Two Months later:
I heard fire sirens coming down my street as I was walking home from school. They stop at the Pauley’s and the ambulance follows with the cops not far behind. Oh my God, I wonder what’s going on there? A small crowd of neighbors gather near my house and I join them as mom comes out and we stand on our porch watching. The ambulance guys come out with Mr. Pauley on a stretcher and put him into it and take off, with sirens screaming.
We later heard that Mr. Pauley had a heart attack and died at the hospital. So much for his affair I thought. Wonder what Mrs. Pauley is going to do without him. She’ll probably be better off, my mom said. What with his carousing with young women and her not even knowing anything about it.
So mom and I went to the funeral. I only went under protest as I really didn’t like the man. But when mom says go, you go. Most of the neighbors went and came back to the house later for refreshments. Mrs. P. actually seemed to be enjoying herself. Strange though, not one of their sons came to see dear old dad put into the ground.
Mrs. P. later told my mom that she was being evicted because of back taxes, so she would be leaving soon. She told mom not to worry though as one of her sons had invited her to live with him and his family. She also told mom that she knew about her husband carrying on behind her back. She thinks it was the reason he had the heart attack!