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30.10.2011

For Hallowe'en something for the grown-ups

ORIGINAL STATE

"Coming!"

The plastic pack is an awkward shape. Forcefully, she shoves it into the cupboard,
locks the door. Another chime. A few deep breaths and Carol opens.

"Good evening, Ms Barns." Two policemen are eying Carol, her sweaty T-shirt, the
spattered trousers. "You've reported domestic violence?"

Carol nods, "The bloke opposite beats his wife."



"Mrs Mathews denies it," the older policeman says. "Apparently, her husband's not
even at home."

"Probably gone for more beer. Have you noticed her sunglasses? It's 9:00 pm."
The policemen crane their necks to peer past Carol. "Mr Mathews told his wife, he
wanted to go over and teach that slut (begging your pardon, Ma'am) a thing or two."

Carol grins and steps aside. "Be my guests."

"You're moving in?" the younger one treads over plastic foil through empty rooms.
Pots of paint and brushes everywhere, naked light bulbs hanging from the ceiling, bucket and
broom standing in the corridor. There's chlorine in the air.

Carol shakes her head. "Out. I'd painted the walls, built in extra cupboards. The owner
insists on the original state."

"You can do that?"

"I'm a painter-decorator, officer. I do many things other women don't," she grins.

The policemen seem satisfied and the older one says, "Well, then. Thanks for your co-
operation. Good night."

Alone again, Carol taps the cupboard door lightly.

"Well, Tom. Seems you've gone missing. Tomorrow I'll fill the spaces around you
with resin. Once I've finished, the cupboard will have vanished. Original state regained."

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