Wednesday's Three Word Wednesday

The words over at Three Word Wednesday are deception, panic and scheme. A bit of flash fiction for your reading pleasure.

Cooking from Scratch
There are several policemen on our front porch, knocking urgently at the door.
“Don’t you dare let them in,” my mother hisses through a crack behind the cellar door. “In fact, you get down here right now.”
She opens the door and I scoot past. She locks it after me. Three deadbolts, two surface slide bolts, two flush bolts, top and bottom.
The cellar smells of dust, ink. Mother has set up an offset printing press, color. It hums with life.
My dad’s down there, wearing a green cellophane visor, his shirt sleeves held back with what looks like pink garters. He’s drawn a pencil mustache on his upper lip, in eyeliner. A fat cigar juts from his mouth, the end slick, masticated with spit. Every so often, he takes the cigar out and slides in an Oreo from a dinner plate – the good China – and chews.
He’s using the machete arm of a paper cutter to slice what’s coming off the press.
He waves.
Mom’s in a blue coverall, a Glock G23 in the waistband belt. Her strawberry-blond hair held back with a blue bandana, tied gansta-style. It really sets off her baby blues, I think.
And notice that her delicate hands are smudged with ink.
They’re printing coupons by the hundreds.
Five dollar rebates on a three-pack of light bulbs. Ten dollars off Pampers. Deep discounts on toilet paper, pasta sauce, shredded cheese.
Buy one, get three free on Oreos. Stacks of cookies have replaced mom’s canned tomatoes on the shelves.
“But, why?” I ask.
“You don’t know what the girls at bridge, the Ladies Auxiliary down at the church, will do for a good bargain,” she says. “It just spiraled from there.”
Tears begin to streak down my face. My parents, forgers. Common criminals.
“I can’t abide by the deception, the scheming,” I say. “I have to stop this.”
Halfway up the stairs, mom grabs my pants leg.
“Don’t you see?” she says, panic rising in her voice. “I just know those people at Nabisco want me dead.”

11 comments:

anthonynorth said...

Very nicely done and I love the ending.

gautami tripathy said...

I like the vivid colours that mom and dad seem to be wearing.

The ending is great!

somebody watching you!

Richard said...

lots of laughs. tight, vivid, and funny.

quin browne said...

made me grin all the way through...

Tumblewords: said...

Had me fooled! Love the complexity of this, the underpinnings and the imagery. I knew there was money printing going on, since I so recently did it myself. Glad it was coupons, may want to take a look at them, next! Explanation: For a gift exchange, I printed a $20 bill, shredded it and put it in an envelope with a nice card and a glue stick. Only after the game, did I replace the shreds and glue with a real bill. Lots of laffs!

Lucy said...

hahaha all us moms turn crazy at one point!

TD said...

Awesome. Witty. Engaging. Colorful. Playful. A particularly enjoyable and entertaining piece.

TD said...

And thank you for your constructive criticism of my piece. I have too few in my geographic radius who will offer such feedback. And after a re-read I realize that you and gautami were quite right.

lissa said...

I wouldn't have think printing coupons that easy but what a fun read!

Mike said...

Thanks for the idea.

Norma said...

What a great story. I'm the Columbus (Ohio) anti-coupon queen, and just blogged about clippers. Yes, there really are forged coupons! Thanks for stopping by.