Holly Hampton put in her George Michael CD and turned the volume up. She took a deep breath and looked at her three passengers. Her daughters. Up until the minute, George started singing the entire car had been dead silent. There was just too much to think about so Holly decided maybe it was best they didn’t think at all and just sing. The tune was Everything she wanted. The girls just smiled and started to sing. Even though she was singing with the girls her mind wondered back to the day they had moved into the house next door to the nosey neighbor.
Edward and Holly bought their dream home on Coconut Lane a year after Edward opened his own Dentist office. It had been a dream of theirs that had taken a little longer than expected but none the less had come true.
Coconut Lane was thirty miles down a winding two-way road deep inside a valley. A valley that looked like it rolled off the pages of a Nora Roberts novel written in Wyoming. But the truth of the matter was Coconut Lane was in Northern California right outside of Nevada City. The houses leading up to the Hampton’s new dream home were bold and firm. They gave you the feeling of plantations from back in the slavery days. As the Hamptons drove up to their dream home the couple next door waved as they did every time the Hamptons had been there during the purchase of the house. Although the homes were large enough for a family of ten, today they were just filled with retired couples, a few successful professionals and of course the nosey neighbor.
The girls were seven, nine and eleven when they first moved into the neighborhood. They were beautiful girls who loved to run up and down the sloppy hills of grass surrounding the house. All the girls seem to have long bouncy curls that jumped up and down on their shoulders and one of them even had long circles of curls running down her back. Every day the next-door neighbor and his wife would sit on the porch in their swing and wave at the girls as they played. And, every day the nosey neighbors would work in their garden. Planting, digging and toiling the soil. The couple had long ago set up a lucrative insurance company and now they simply lived off the residuals and a few regular clients who sent their children and children’s, children to start a policy here and there. Sometimes the couple would make lemonade and set the glass pitcher on the picnic table in the front yard to serve as an invitation of sorts for the girls to come over and talk. The father of the girls didn’t like that. He hated the nosey neighbors.
The father decided going to school was a bit much as well. So, he took them out and started a homeschool program. The neighbor and his wife started to notice the limp in the girl’s hair. The curls no longer bounced when they came outside for “Physical Training” as it was now defined by the father. The mother seldom spoke when she walked to the mailbox. Even on days when it was not sunny outside the neighbors noticed the wife would wear sunglasses. Out of concern, the nosey neighbors made a few decisions too. They decided to talk to the wife next time they saw the husband had left town and she was home alone. Because that’s what nosey neighbors do.
The neighbors also noticed the girls no longer wore bright dresses or laughed when they sat on the porch. The neighbors watched the girls for a few months and listened at the windows at night to see if they could define the sadness. While on patrol they heard the sexual moans of the father and the sad cries of a little girl. That was when the decision was made to plant some flowers.
Edward was missing for three years before the insurance company would claim him dead and cash the policy out. During those three years, the girls found their smile again. They even found a lot of things to laugh at. Slowly they got their curls back. The girls grew very fond of the nosey neighbors.
Today before they drove off on a vacation Holly looked over at the nosey neighbor, stuck the for-sale sign in the yard, drove down the windy highway and sung her George Michaels song “Everything she wants” and smiled because every victim should have a nosey neighbor.
Was Edward write for the kill?