Someone was knocking at the door…
“Not again,…” Melanie whimpered, unable to move from the chair. She was not sure how much more she could take. Every night this past week the telephone rang at 2:15 AM, but only static and distant laughter returned her greeting. That strange, yet somehow familiar laughter…
The knock came again. “Why are you doing this?” she cried, blinking away the tears that threatened to spill. But there was no answer.
Tremulously, she approached the door and opened it, her eyes growing wide as she saw the old-fashioned Raggedy Ann doll holding a beautiful bouquet of yellow daisies, her favorite flower.
“Eric!… how??… oh my god…” She sank down onto the stair, oblivious to the cold air whipping around her nightgown.
It was ten years ago, but she remembered that last day together. Calling her from work he had insisted they meet for dinner at Bella Noche. They had their first date at this intimate bistro, and it became their favorite place for special occasions.
“I did it Mel…” Eric beamed. “I am the new Vice President for research and development.” She could tell he had something else he wanted to tell her, but knew better than to push him.
What an incredible evening! She had ordered lobster and they fed each other, playfully holding the pieces just out of reach.
As he excused himself from the table, Melanie heard Eric tell the waiter he was ready. A few minutes later, the staff wheeled in a small table with a big white box wrapped with a beautiful purple bow displayed in the middle.
Barely containing themselves, they left the box in front of her and returned to the kitchen, peeking out the door as she looked at her offering.
“For My Mellie Bear…” read the card. Curiosity took over and she untied the purple bow, causing the box to open. Sitting by itself was a Raggedy Ann doll holding a bouquet of yellow daisies. Charmed by the cute gift, it took her a few minutes to notice that something was on the other hand of the doll. As she reached for it with trembling hands, Eric turned her around, taking the ring before he knelt on one knee before her.
“Mellie Bear, I can’t think of anyone I want to spend my life with more, will you be the Ann to this Raggedy Andy?”
Unable to speak, she nodded and kissed him deeply not believing how lucky she was. His eyes never left her face as he lovingly put the ring on her finger. The ring…
Remembering where she was Melanie reached to her neck and felt that the ring was still there, along with the gold chain she had been given when Eric was killed. Ten years ago a drunk driver destroyed her dreams and left her alone with just her memories.
Her eyes alighted on the doll again. It was sitting exactly the same way as ten years ago. Scrambling up Melanie ran back into her house, unwilling to think about what this meant.
She lay down in her bed, crying for what seemed like hours until she fell asleep from exhaustion.
Suddenly, Melanie was awakened by the ringing of the telephone. Looking at the clock she saw it was 2:15 AM, right on time. She got up and started to walk away, but she really had to know.
“H He Hello?” she stammered. “Hey Mellie Bear, it’s time, it’s really time.” Stunned, she could not mistake that voice and remembered why the laughter was so familiar. Eric always had a hearty laugh, she was just so lost in her grief to truly listen.
She looked up and saw herself lying on the bed, everything becoming clear. It was 2:15 in the morning when she got the call about Eric being killed and now it was her exactly ten years later.
With a full heart she turned when she heard him. Smiling, Eric held out his hand and without a backwards glance Melanie took it.
And, whenever new owners would purchase this house, they would hear a distant laughter, full of happiness and joy.