It is dark, so completely dark as we drive up to this large, old country house. The road into this place looked like it hadn’t been used in many years. The car lights shine on the front of the house as we pull up. It has a large wrap around porch which has definitely seen better years. The window shutters were broken, some were missing completely. But amazingly none of the windows were broken, at least at the front. The house was 2 1/2 stories tall, it was probably a real beauty in it’s day. No one has lived here since the original owner, Mrs. Baker, died suddenly in the 1930s.
The great grandson of Mrs. Baker, John Baker, has hired us to look for the gold that his great grandmother hid somewhere in the house. Probably just a tale handed down in the family and there is nothing hidden here at all. But, we are getting paid to look around so that is what we will do. John said that 2 relatives have died looking for this mysterious gold. But that doesn’t bother us, does it Muffin? Meow. What do you mean, speak for yourself? You’re not scared, are you? She just stares at me with half closed eyes. I know that look. She thinks I’m crazy.
Well Muffin, worried or not there it is, our big chance to become famous and…meow. No, we’re not going to die, you worry too much. We’ll be famous, we’ll be rich, we’ll be…meow? No, not dead, stop saying that. Okay now, come here and let me strap on your headlamp for you. There. Now I’ll take the backpack and my flashlight. Let’s go. It’s cloudy tonight making it even darker than normal. And there is no electricity in this house which is why we need the flashlights. The steps were all broken so we had to be careful. The house looked to be a light yellow with white trim. The front door was large and solid wood.
John had given me the keys to the house but…the door was open! Hmm, that’s odd, I said to Muffin. Meow. No, we’re not going back to the car. Someone probably forgot to close the door the last time they were out here. In we go. It’s even darker inside than outside. I shine my flashlight around the large room. It doesn’t look like anything has been touched since the 1930s, and yet, people have been here looking for that gold. So why is everything so neat? Yet everything was covered with a thick layer of dust, except the floor which was not only dust free, but had highly polished oak flooring. Very strange.
John had given me a rough floor plan of the house. Off to the right is the door to the kitchen. Probably full of mice in there, I said. Muffin was gone into the kitchen like a silver streak. That should keep her busy while I look around in here. Something else odd, there was a big armchair in one corner that didn’t have any dust on it either. Apparently that was Mrs. Baker’s favorite chair. I sat on the chair and looked around the room. There was a large stone fireplace next to the kitchen door. On the other side of the fireplace were stairs going up to the second floor, and next to that another doorway which led to the dining room.
Above the fireplace mantel was a painting of Mrs. Baker when she was quite young. She was very pretty with long light brown hair and wearing a white dress. Nothing unusual about the painting. Just as I stand up I hear a noise outside and Muffin comes running in and over to the window. I join her. Meow! I couldn’t believe what I was seeing!
To be continued.
Steve and Muffin.
© 2020 Steve McLeod.