The following is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to any person or place is unintentional.
The old Thompson house sat between a church and an empty lot. The house itself was slated for demolition, having failed to procure another wealthy patron to take up the cause. With lead glass windows and turrets that faced the front of the house, it stood silent and empty – a memory of another era. Various real estate connoisseurs had left their marks on the house; the last one had tried to divide it into separate apartments and had paved over much of the field to the back, to create tenant parking.
I walk by the house twice a day; once in the mornings on my way to my work as a teller at Fitchley Bank, and again on my way home in the evenings. Throughout the ten years that I have passed by the Thompson house, I have been witness to the house’s many transformations. And now it stands silent and empty, unloved and unwanted and facing demolition. Soon it will no longer even exist.
Every day when I walk by the house, I slow my pace and gaze at the majesty of her. My imagination transports me to the early days of its existence, at the turn of the last century. I imagine horse-drawn carriages and footmen, women in long gowns and men always neatly attired. A box at the side of the house that once held coal now holds trash bins. I’ve never been inside the house but in my imagination, I see twelve foot ceilings and crown moldings.
I guess it’s just a matter of time until the strippers come to strip away anything of value – copper piping, cedar flooring, the leaded glass. The house will soon sit gutted, condemned for safety reasons, and wait for its demise.
Something was different today though. As I walked home in the early evening at dusk, I thought I saw a flicker of light in one of the turret windows. I stopped and looked up and before the dim light faded, I could make out the profile of a woman’s face. It flashed in the window and then suddenly disappeared. Did I imagine her? Was there someone living there? Or was it simply a memory of days past, come to bid a fond farewell?