The Riddlous Letter

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    All of Trout Ave. is drenched in oil and acid rain. Houses, half collapsed. Cars, peeling and flat-tired. Power lines, sparking like fireworks in the gloomy sky. No, if you were wondering, this is not year 3,034. The zombie apocalypse has not yet been spread throughout the planet like a plague. America’s government hasn’t lost its mind entirely. All I can say about it is that puppies and french fries are not extinct, as some of you would love to hear.     Quarters and dimes klink together in my stitched pocket, making loud noises that echo off of my neighbors’ rusty rain gutters. That’s all the extra cash I seem to have these days, plus three dollars. Before entering my front yard, I think it’s best that I grab the mail for the first time this month. As I pull open the slot, I notice that it’s still open an inch, the mailman probably forgot to push it closed all the way. All that sits in the small, metal box is a single, red letter. Hmm, and when was the last time my friends wrote to me? I sigh and rip the letter upen, inside is a folded, cream colored paper. Printed in bold is my name Brooke Clover and the numbers 3958, as if to be a riddlous letter. Well, that is peculiar, considering there is no sender’s name, no address and only four numbers written inside. Though, this isn’t the weirdest thing I’ve encountered before. I step onto the front porch, the floorboards creak the same way as it would in a horror movie. I can already hear Fierce barking and scratching at the door. He either misses me or the rat that he couldn’t get his paws on. All I can seem to think at that moment is oh, that poor rat. I unlock it and twist the doorknob so I can manage to let myself in. Fierce, a seemingly small dog jumps up and tries his hardest to get into my arms. But, I know what he really wants is food. I get the bag of kibble from inside the coat closet and pour some into his plastic bowl. “There you go,” I say and pat his head. Other than Fierce, I’ve been living alone for a few years now. Though, I had a sister, but she died in a car crash long before I could remember anything about her. I remember the blood-red letter and take it out of the bag that I roughly stuffed it into. I take a moment to silently observe the cream colored note inside. I sit back in my chair and ponder. Thinking about those numbers 3958 almost rings a bell in my head. I remember them. But where… Where are those numbers from? Who sent the letter? Why do I recognize it? My head is roaming with thoughts and questions, but the problem is-I have no one to answer them. But then it hits me. How many numbers are there in an address? Four. How many numbers are 3958? Four. Exactly, an address, that’s what it is. I grin, knowing that I have figured out something so obvious. Oh well, I better enjoy the little moments while I still have them. I grab my pocket knife and the letter and quickly rush out the door, noticing that Fierce had finally caught the rat that he had been searching for. I approach the driveway where my car-a 2008 Subaru-sits, and has been for the past few weeks. I have decided to use it the least as possible, money problems. I get in the car and slam the door shut, some might think that I'm some drunk driver on the loose. But no, I'm just some girl looking for answers.






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