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The NORMAL Neighbors

‘It would be fun’, she said. ‘It would be a learning experience’, she said. If by learning my mom meant realizing that your new neighbors across the street smile way too much to actually be happy half the time, then I’m in class right now. Start teachin’ mom.

My new neighbors, they were the average people. Brown hair, blue eyes, nothing stood out with them; which made them completely stand out. This street was full of weirdos and creeps, and while my family is kind of normal, everyone else has gone off the deep end. The widow on our left is a weird old woman who likes to garden way too much. She’s the reason I nailed my blinds shut because once you saw grandma without her hand-me-down overalls you either scoop out your eyes or do what I did. Of course, then there is the family on our right with the pair of devil spawned fraternal twins that like to climb up on our lawn care box on the back porch, and stare into the kitchen and dining room. My mom once tried to invite them in, but they seemed to be stuck at the back door. I wonder why?  I just put a well-hidden cross, that was passionately blessed by the priest up the street, on the door post. Whatever could it have been?

I’m the investigator of the neighborhood, or what my older siblings like to call me, the sci-fi lunatic of the street. I admit, my accusation against the mail lady being a werewolf was a bit far-fetched, until she growled at me one day for grabbing the mail out of her hand. When I tell you that the new couple across the street has a secret, just trust me.

The doorbell rang, or at least I think it did since nothing could be heard from inside the house. The woman answered the door with the usual wide smile stretching her face sideways.

“Come in. . . “ She stepped to the side and I walked in.

“Thank-you.” I don’t give my name to the possibly-alien-probed-people intent to destroy life as we know it.

I walked into the large open living room with a flat screen tv, leather furniture, and baje colored walls. The man walked down the stairs and went right over to the woman and put his arm around her. “Hello.” He smiled

I waved. “Is there anything I should be, concern,” think about the next word carefully. “Anything I should be concerned with?”

“Nope.” The woman bounced on her heels. “We just feed Poopsi upstairs and the door is shut so there, nothing to really worry about.” She played off the whole situation, but my body had chills running up and down my spine. What’s a Poopsi?

“Just don’t go upstairs,” The man warned. “Poopsi isn’t friendly towards strangers.

They said some other things and then left with big smiles on their face. I stood there for a while before slumping on the couch. There were two ideas in my mind. Leave and go home before I see something I don’t want to see, or go upstairs to find their secrets. Upstairs always have secrets, my sister’s room is upstairs and that’s where I found her diary.

Slowly I got up off the couch and climbed the tall staircase.There was a long hall with several doors. Carefully I opened them one at a time, looked in and then shut them. At the end of the hall, there was a door. With all the other doors checked out, with no sign of ‘Poopsi’, I ventured toward the last door. My hands shook as they reached for the knob. The door squealed as it dramatically opened. I looked in.

The room was pretty empty, which was odd since it was the largest and most likely the masters. There was a dresser, mirror, a table and a lamp on it, and something in the far corner. Just glancing at it made my stomach turn, so I just avoided it. Walking close to the walls I went over to the dresser and slowly opened the dusty thing. There was a quiet growl that came from the dark, mysterious corner, and when I looked at it again I could make out a small childlike hand and a grown man’s foot. I turn away when I felt it looking at it. My breathing stopped. What was I looking at?

Rolled tightly together, all in rows with one laying right on top, were masks. But as I brushed my fingers over it, over the rough lumpy white hair and smooth nose, I started to recognize the face. It the old lady’s face that liked to sleep in her garden naked. I retract my hand and made a loud gasp. So loud that the thing in the corner made a grunting noise.

“MMMMmmMMmmM?”

I froze with my back turned to it. I shut my eyes and prayed that it couldn’t see me.

“MaSeR?” It called out.

I looked at it in the corner of my eye and saw the abomination. It was two people combined. I could see the two faces morphed together, the nose sticking oddly up and the light played on its deeply sunken cheeks. It didn’t look nice or healthy. But as odd as it looked, it was short and oddly child-like.

“MAy we ComE oUt?” It was odd, but it sounded like the twins from next door. “We WoN’t do IT agAIn.” It said.

I finally turned to it and met its gaze. One green eye, and one blue eye significantly smaller than the other.

“YoU’re Not sUppOse to Be herE.” It said while narrowing it’s – what I think is – eyebrows at me.

I raced out of there, down the stairs and out the door. Halfway across the street, I look back and see them looking down at me through the second-floor window. As I reached my side of the street, I saw that I left the front door wide open, but I wasn’t that concern. I ran into my house, up to my room and under my covers for the rest of the night.

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