September and Other Stories (Chapter 9, page 1 of 1)

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Chapter 9

So my mother and I are driving over the little one lane bridge near our house on the way to the store when she slams on the breaks.

"What's wrong?" I ask.

"Somebody's gonna die," she replies, staring off to her left.

"Yeah, us if you do that again."

"No, I just saw a pair of brown pants floating in the water."

I try to look but I don't see any pants. Mom regains her composure and we get to the store, get the groceries, and make it home without further incident. As we walk in the door, Dad is just hanging up the phone. He pulls my Mom aside and tells her Uncle Frank just died.

We go down to Tennessee for the funeral. Afterwards, we stop to visit Orie Hayes. Orie's sitting in her rocking chair. I ask her where the bathroom is and she gives me directions to her outhouse. Just as I go out the back door to brave whatever vermin are waiting for me, I hear Orie say, "Ellie, I just knew somebody was gonna die."

"How'd you know, Aunt Orie," says my Mom.

"Night before your brother passed on I had a dream about a pair of brown pants floating in the river." I hear her spit into her snuff can.

I consider my chances of walking home to Jersey, and then decide to go sit in the car and wait.

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