Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect – #271

Nadine: “Why are you handing this to me?”

Postman Pete: “It’s addressed ‘To the Lady of the House’.”

Nadine: “You’re assuming that this is my house. And that I’m a lady.”

Pete: “You did sort of walk out the door just now.”

Nadine: “That doesn’t prove anything. I could have killed the people inside and I was trying to make my escape when you rudely walked up.”

Pete: “Well, I didn’t see or hear anything and I’m on a schedule. So could you just take the letter and I’ll rudely walk away.”

Nadine: “Why do you show up here every day? Are you stalking me? I’ve read about people like you. Did your mother neglect you as a child? Did you not get enough porridge?”

Pete: “My mother was a saint and I got porridge every day. And before you ask, Father was aces as well, we couldn’t be closer and I call both of them every day and people have written songs about how happy our family is. Now would you please take the letter?”

Nadine: “It’s my hair, then.”

Pete: “What?”

Nadine: “You fancy my hair. You want your hair to look like mine. I know you’ve been practicing, trying to style it just like I do. But you botched it this morning and now you’ve hidden the mess under that ridiculous hat the size of a bathtub.”

Pete: “I have no feelings whatsoever about your hairstyle or your dress or the fact that whoever is legally responsible for you is not doing their job. Just. Take. The. Letter.”

Nadine, sighing, taking, then shoving back: “I don’t want it. It bores me. Return to sender.”

Pete: “Fine, I will do just that. I’ll send it back to… hey, the return address is the same as this address. Did you send this letter to yourself?”

Nadine: “Perhaps.”

Pete: “For the love of God…”

Nadine: “God had nothing to do with it. My internet connection has been down for three days and I was bored out of my mind. Would you like to come in for some tea? I can fix that botch you’ve made of your hair. And I just got the latest beauty kit from Vidal Sassy Soon. We can frost your tips! The proper amount of highlighting can change your life.”

Pete: “I have no intention of… wait, what kind of tea?”

Nadine: “Better than what you can afford on your government salary. Previous visitors have reported experiencing small orgasms at the aroma alone.”

Pete: “I see. What kind of sandwiches will you serve? And will they be crust-less?”

Nadine: “Cucumber, and of course. The rest of the people in this town might be unrepentant heathens, but I’m certainly not. No offense.”

Pete: “None taken. I suppose I could consider this my lunch break, even though I’ve already taken three, what with this being a government job.”

Nadine: “Splendid! Let’s retire to the parlor.”

They entered the domicile, giddily.

Nadine bolted the front door, discreetly.

Rod Serling entered the frame, seriously. “Mail delivery is a tricky thing, an erratic quirk of the human experience. Sometimes everyone gets a postcard from a loved one. Sometimes that loved one is never seen again. Such are the risks of The Highlight Zone…”


Originally published in “Crusty Pie” on 07/07/15 and “Bonnywood Manor” on 10/09/15. The ending was considerably changed and lengthened for this post, because I just can’t leave a story alone even after I thought I was done frosting the tips…


25 replies »

  1. Another great one! If you write flash fiction, do something for the HELP charity challenge. I’d LOVE to see what you’d do with it.
    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMORE dot com)
    ADD/EFD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder
    “It takes a village to transform a world!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Mail delivery is a totally different event at our house. The dog attacks the front door with gusto so most deliverers skedaddle as fast as they can. Rather amusing to watch from the top of the stairs.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I get the sense that you live for these developments, giggling wickedly and munching on popcorn. Of course, things won’t be so funny when you find out the escaping mailman didn’t deliver your check from Publisher’s Clearing House, instead scribbling “return to sender” on the envelope as he flees…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. And here I was thinking the poor man got lost on his way to a safari…and since he was going to get lost this way, someone handed him a sack of mail and said “As long as you’re going…” That may explain the slender bulge down the side of his leg, where he stowed his rifle. Or… well we’ve all heard stories about the postman *nudge nudge wink wink*…but I suppose, despite my own forays in that area when I was young and silly; that they are merely urban myth. Lucky drop cloth woman…

    Liked by 2 people

    • All of these are excellent observations, of course, although, now that I reflect, I’m a little blue that I never collected stamps from a postman, ahem. (It just seems like something I should have done.) But now I’m fixating on what looks like a French baguette sticking out of the mailman’s bag (the one he is carrying, that is). I clearly missed a number of important details with this one and I really should do a revision…

      Liked by 1 person

  4. What man hasn’t lured in, due to the enticement of cucumber sandwiches and a spot of tea?
    Wait… what country is this? 😉

    (cjhartwell ADDandSOlittleElse dot com), ADHD and litter box cleaner upper, ADD if you don’t notice me I’ll shrink from existence
    “It takes a cynic to yeah, whatever.”

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That is a policeman who is undercover as a mailman. He is still wearing his copper’s hat. The young woman is also part of the undercover sting operation. There is a camera in that stuffed cat sitting in the window of neighbouring house (background on right side ). This is a carefully planned operation to capture that stalker in the suit who keeps walking in front of a camera and delivers strange monologues about the nature of reality.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ohhh! I thought the number of strange people in my neighborhood had increased lately. Thanks for the heads up. I will now initiate Incognito Blogger Protocols and slip away into the night. Shh….


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