This post was written for the Weekly Writing Challenge.
Amidst the stillness of the night I hear noises. Running water, a cough, And chanting.
Horrified and curious, I get out of bed, wear my robe, put on my glasses and head out to the direction of the noises.
Until I stop. And see some light.
I have been living in this orphanage for as long as I remember, I have never heard such noises in the middle of the night.
No one is to be awake at night.
I hear a second cough. And the chanting continues.
Sounds like an old lady.
“But we don’t have old ladies working in the orphanage!” I thought.
I keep walking down the corridor, around the corner until I see the door of the kitchen.
It is closed.
Light escapes through the slit below the door and through the keyhole.
I hear my heart beating louder. I feel sweat on my forehead.
I approach the door and look through the keyhole.
Two old ladies stand with their back to the door. Chanting.
I concentrate on the thread of words, I can’t make out them out.
Until I realize it’s not English.
“You can turn off the water now.” says one of the ladies.
As she turns around to turn off the tap, I notice her short grey wig, her freshly-applied red lips, green eye shadow, and her very pale wrinkled face.
A face that I have never seen before.
Or wait, maybe I have.
The second lady had shiny blond hair and a much younger voice. I can’t see her face, she gave me her back. But I can see her white silk dress. Just by looking at her back, she is beautiful.
Her chants are smooth, friendly, that of a mother comforting her child.
I concentrate. The rhythm seems familiar.
“Honey, It’s time.” The older lady says with a sad tone. She grabs the young lady’s hand and leaves through the opposite door.
I open the door and hurry behind them.
“Hey! wait!” I scream.
An echo. There was no sign of them.
I turn back to the kitchen, particularly to that counter the two ladies were working on, hoping to know anything about them.
I find a plate covered with a clean white cloth. I pick it up realizing its beautiful smell.
And my favorite childhood dish.