White Picket fence This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

October 28, 2009
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Mirrium was a simple woman. She loved her life, and her house, and simple picket fence with fading white paint. Her husband, Harold, was much the same, simple, and reasonably happy. It was just how they were, really. How they had always lived. And even how they had raised their only son, Nickolaus. He was smart, smart enough to be a doctor, and handsome, and exactly what most parents would want or need in their only child.

The table was set for four. The white table cloth and eggshell colored dinner plated were synchronized, easily matching the rest of the dining room’s decor. The space had two innocent windows on one wall that looked out to the front of the house to the pure green lawn. That lawn was now only lit by streaming street lamps and the yellowish tint in rays of the setting sun.

Windows in the tiny white living room gave the same view. So when Nickolaus's car drove by slowly, parking in the driveway, Mirrium saw, and her heart thumped in anticipation and slight stress for the events coming in the next few hours, but even more, the next few minutes.

“Harold......They’re here....” she said quietly, but loud enough that he could here her from his den. Harold stood up and walked over to sit with his wife. His forty-two year old knees had seen to much life and action in that time. What with collage games he used to play? It was a wonder that they worked at all.

Harold sat down on the love seat with Mirrium, and she leaned closer, ever so slightly. It was an act that was to look like they were saving room, but really, it was for Harold's supposed confidence to rub off on Mirrium. It was for Mirrium to feel close. Safe. It was to comfort her nervousness, as well as his.

Mirrium could imagine the pep talk going on in their driveway. Nickolaus was talking her into meeting his parents, and how it was to late for them to skip it, just as anyone would on this kind of event that always happened when two young people got close. This had only happened with Mirrium one other time though.

That was with Victoria. Victoria was great. Her dark brown hair and Catlike eyes gave her an intelligent disposition. She was brilliant and wanted to be a lawyer. Mirrium always wondered what had happened between Nickolaus and Vicky. Still, it was over now.

A knock on the front door interrupted Mirrium’s thoughts. She got up and straightened her skirt so it flowed, wrinkle-free, just past her knees. But the door felt closer than it should have.

It opened easily in Mirrium’s hand; the shiny knob felt cold, and delicate. Behind the door was her handsome Nickolaus. Her nervousness evaporated. His eyes met hers and he smiled.

“Hey, Mom” He said with a wide welcoming grin.

“Awww....Hello my Nickolaus!” Mirrium said with a smile and kissed his cheek. How had she felt so uneasy about a reunion with her son?

“Mom,” He started slowly. Mirrium realized his hand was holding someone else's, who had not yet entered. Nickolaus pulled the girl in gently by the hand. “ This is my friend....my fiancé, Lydia Rose.”

Mirrium froze, and her balance meters swiveled. Fiancé.

The girl in front of her was shorter than her son, but that wasn’t very hard. She had golden curls that poured down to her mid back, and blue eyes so light and clear that Mirrium compared them to a collection of shards of broken mirror. Lydia was wearing a beautiful,orange, broomstick, skirt and tight mid-sleeve top that coordinated with it. She had a shy smile that told Mirrium a lot about her.

But even through that smile, and how much this girl was, both Mirrium and Harold saw in that smile, no more than that this girl was not a white picket fence.

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