Continued from: With Drawn: Part 6 — The Warrior
After dinner, Jacob slipped out the back door of the Walsh’s home. Jacob didn’t go out the front door of the Walsh’s home because Dennis was sitting in the living room, which was where the front door was. Dennis was watching television and drinking beer. Jacob knew that Dennis would ask where Jacob thought he was going. Dennis would ask this even though he knew where Jacob was going. Jacob went for a walk after dinner every night. When Dennis asked him where he was going, Jacob could only deduce that Dennis was either so drunk that his short-term memory had been affected, or Dennis was just being an asshole. Jacob calculated that it was most likely the latter, and so, Jacob decided to exit the house through the back door in the kitchen in order to avoid any alcohol-induced amnesia or assholeness.
Jacob rounded the back of the Walsh’s house and stepped onto Savage Street. The Walsh’s house was 41 Savage Street. Jacob had a photographic memory and the reason he liked to walk the neighborhood each evening was because he could perfectly picture in his mind’s eye exactly what the neighborhood looked like the evening before, or even the year before. Jacob liked to note the changes that would occur to that neighborhood at the end of each day. A child’s bike not put away, a car parked facing the street rather than the garage, a stone in a different place. In a world where Jacob struggled to understand changes, he liked to put himself into a controlled setting where he could note changes and then go home and work through in his mind the reasons for each change.
Jacob liked to take his walks at dusk, which meant that Joanne would need to provide dinner quite early in the winter when dusk occurred at four pm. This, of course, pissed off Dennis, who would say, “I feel like some geriatric Jew in Florida trying to get the goddamn early bird special.”
Dennis was referring to a fact that a lot of older people and a lot of Jewish people lived in Florida, and he was accentuating a stereotype that both old people and Jewish people liked to save money by eating early dinner specials.
The early dinners didn’t bother Joanne much. And it wasn’t because she was old or Jewish. It was because she generally worked the night shift and would have to eat early anyway. Dennis didn’t really care about eating early, mind you, he just liked to complain about Jacob.
Jacob began to walk down Savage Street. He was looking at the house that was across the street from the Walsh’s house. The address of that house was 42 Savage Street. 42 Savage Street was abandoned. The house was in severe disarray. The paint was peeling and it was nearly impossible to tell what color the paint originally was. Shingles were falling off the roof and the grass was overgrown.
Jacob could not imagine anyone ever wanting to live in that house. The “fucking shithole,” as it was known to Dennis. Jacob now watched that house as he passed it, noting the grass’s length and time’s scouring of the house’s façade. But this evening, there was a major change to the house. A For Sale sign was on the front lawn. Jacob had wondered why no one had ever attempted to sell the house before. He wondered if it was haunted. There were a lot of supposed hauntings on the island. Jacob wondered if this house was a place that actually was haunted. Maybe it was a ghost or bumps in the night that caused people to not want to live there. Maybe bodies buried beneath the floorboards. Or maybe Dennis was right. The place was just a fucking shithole.
Continued in: With Drawn: Part 8 — A Hard Truth