Plot Twists

Photo by Alexander Grey on

The front door banged open. With armfuls of groceries, Natty hurried inside and nudged the door closed with her right foot. Pyewacket threaded between her legs as she unloaded her milk, bread, and eggs.
“This isn’t helping me go faster,” Natty said as she took off her raincoat and searched her pockets and purse for her favorite scarf, a silk print of Klimt’s The Kiss. The Siamese caterwauled in counterpoint. Conceding, Natty opened a can of Blue Buffalo. She retraced her steps over her missing scarf over a pot of tomato soup and grilled munster sandwiches.
With a thick quilt and a handful of throw pillows, the corner of her bedroom is made ready. During the pandemic, Natty had gone through a library of audiobooks. Next she dipped her toe in a river of podcasts. But a few weeks ago when she was cleaning out her closet for donations Natty heard voices. Above her unworn but too nice to let go party dress was a small metal grate in the ceiling. Each night starting around eight pm, words rained down from the apartment directly over hers.

The Spinster Innes discovered bodies at the foot of staircase and uncovered the Armstrongs’ blackmailer. Next Iris must locate her missing new companion Miss Troy on a speeding train of suspicious characters. Some nights until around ten, some nights longer plot twisted from above.
Last night, Natty has fallen asleep over a bowl of chips the trials and tribulations of the illustrious Tyler family. Now she listened for the latest story.
Above Ira traced his fingers across his generous bookshelves. Mary Rinehart Roberts, Ethel Lina White, Charlotte Armstrong, his hand marched over thrillers as he considered tonight’s read. Since losing Amanda, Ira couldn’t sleep unless he read out loud. He needed to hear words any words reverberate off his walls and lull him to sleep.

Lately it had been a little easier. Ira felt as if he was sharing a book and dinner with someone special. Then he caught sight of the golden silk scarf he had found on the sidewalk in front of his building. Slender rectangles of goldenrod and bronze, teal and cadium red, two lovers embracing, shimmered from his coat stand. Ira looked for a Clutch of Constables, the Ngaio Marsh mysery featuring an artist and her husband a Detective Inspector. He touched the novel and somewhere below his apartment a Siamese meowed loudly. With a laugh, Ira took that for approval.
Natty dipped her grilled cheese into her soup. The warm sounds of artist Agatha Troy on an inland cruise to murder began to filter down and settle down around her. Pyewacket nestled on Natty’s toes as the mystery unfolded.

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