I was going to hang out with Jake today, but Mom insisted that I haul this lame basket of groceries to Grandma’s instead. Supposedly, some fresh air would do me good. Whatever.
Jake said he could pick me up at Grandma’s afterward, so it wasn’t a total loss. I put on the red hoodie he had left at my place last week and set off into the woods.
When I was little, I would see squirrels and rabbits along the path to Grandma’s house. These days, the woods were littered with needles and used condoms.
As I approached Grandma’s house, I heard howling inside. Hairs stood up on the back of my neck.
I knocked on the door; there was no answer. I knocked again and heard a commotion.
I pressed the handle; the door was unlocked.
I put the basket on the floor by the front door. The house was dark. I could hear labored breathing from the bedroom. I went inside.
“Hi, honey. I was napping.”
Still in bed, she turned on the lamp on her nightstand. I winced at the sight.
“Grandma, why are your eyes so big?”
“Presbyopia. My eyes look gigantic with these glasses on.”
“Grandma, why are you so hairy?”
“Menopause. It’s mostly on the chin, though. I know, I look like the goddamn Bearded Lady.”
“Grandma, why do you have such big teeth?”
“New dental implants. Do you like them? I hope they’re worth it. I’ve spent every last penny on them; if I hadn’t, I could still afford laser eye surgery and facial hair removal.”
I heard a noise in the closet.
“Grandma, what’s going on? Is someone else here?”
“No, honey, don’t go in there!”
I opened the closet and saw a burly man in a wolf costume, looking sheepish.
“Grandma, what the hell? Who’s this?”
She sighed and threw off her covers, revealing a matching wolf costume.
“Honey, this is Wolfgang; we met online. We like to…dress up. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting you to stop by today.”
My mind was blank.
“Hi everyone! The door was open…”
I’d never been so happy to hear Jake’s voice.
“Bye, Grandma! The groceries are by the door! Nice to meet you, Wolfgang!” I didn’t wait for an answer as I ran outside, dragging Jake by the hand.
“You look great in that red hoodie,” said Jake on the ride home. “So, what exactly happened in there?”
“Wolves,” I shuddered. “Fuckin’ wolves.”