Imogene Hurley Plans a Funeral (PREVIEW)

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A first look at the newest and partially written Imogene story. This is a preview, the story here is not complete. I'll update this story when it's finished.

Imogene Hurley
for those of you reading
lives in a house on NW Keating
a street of white fences, yellow houses and green trees
neighborhoods of kiddies, play grounds and skinned knees
but the oddest place you ever have seen
is the home of the wild and wiley Imogene . . .

at least it was on the day Imogene herself planned a funeral!

It happened one day just after two
when Imogene felt a soft “pop” beneath her shoe
and lifting her leg to see what was there
certainly gave Imogene a terrible scare
for what was under her shoe would make some kids squirm
Imogene had squished an innocent wooley-worm
which now was now dead in a splotch of green goo
on both the sidewalk and the bottom Imogene’s shoe.

It was almost like hearing the siren of an ambulance as Imogene wailed in horror and ran into the house boo-hooing as if there was no tomorrow. Hannah Hurley came running from upstairs. Usually that kind of crying only meant one thing . . . someone was bleeding.

Hanna reached the bottom of the stairs and grabbed the first aid kit from the hall closet and headed straight to Imogene’s room where she lay face down in her pillow sobbing.

Imogene! What happened honey are you okay?

Imogene appeared intact with no signs of blood so Hanna set the first aid kit down and went over and sat down on the bed.

“Hey there,” she said softly, “What’s going on Fidget, why so many tears?

Fidget was a nickname Imogene earned before she could talk. Hannah had given her the name because Imogene would squirm around a lot and drop her bottle when she was a baby.

“I killed a butterfly baby” wailed Imogene in between sniffles and sobs.

“You mean a caterpillar?” Hannah replied. “Oh Imogene I’m sorry. How did that happen?”

Imogene began crying harder.

“I was running and I didn’t see it and I stepped on it!” Imogene’s poor shoulder hunched forward and she blew her nose into the tissue Hannah held out for her.

“But you’ve killed fishing worms and fireflies and frogs and spiders . . . why are you so upset about a caterpillar?”

It wasn’t a caterpillar mom — it was a woolly worm and it was supposed to be a butterfly and now it will never get the chance because I smooshed it with my shoe. “I’m a killer,” whispered Imogene slowly “. . . a cold-blooded killer.”

Hannah laughed. Imogene it’s about lunch time. How would you like a nice fried egg and ketchup sandwich? Would that cheer you up? she asked

Mmm-hmm sniffled Imogene wiping the tears eyes,

Okay, she said standing up and giving Imogene one last pat on her head. I’ll go fix your sandwich and leave you alone to plan your funeral” Hannah said jokingly

Imogene, Imogene crying “boo-hoo”
suddenly knew what she had to do
and right then and there she sat her mind firm
to plan a funeral for the squished wooly worm

When Imogene tromped down the stairs in big brother Bo’s hand me down boots, Hannah turned and then had to choke back a laugh.

Imogene who was taking the whole woolly worm death very seriously rounded the corner dressed all in black. On her head was one of Grannabelle’s old black hats with a veil she had given Imogene for dress up. Imogene was also wearing her black Sunday dress and a pair of matching black tights. Even on big brother Bo’s hand-me down Boots, Imogene had used marker to blacken them in. On both her hands she wore black winter gloves and arrived at the table carrying a little black box which she sat down in front of her. Imogene sighed a long sad sigh, peeled off her gloves and begin to nibble her fried egg sandwich.

Imogene honey, whats all this? asked Hannah trying not to laugh.

I’m in mourning, replied Imogen, “And this afternoon, after I’m finished eating I’m going to have a funeral for Willie the Wormy and bury him in the yard . . . and you have to come or I will be very very very mad. Imogene pouted and stuck out her bottom lip to let everyone know she meant business.

Now its only fair to mention here that Imogene was not really an angry girl and Imogene wasn’t a sassy girl. She was just the kind of girl who took some things like woolly worm deaths very seriously. Imogene also held very strong opinions that others should do the same. She wouldn’t really be mad at her mother or throw a tantrum . . . or at least not a very big one.

Well yes, said Hannah, I suppose I can make it.

Good, said Imogene uncrossing her arms

Just then big brother Bo bounded into the house and seeing his little sister dressed in black complete with hat and veil, he couldn’t resist to ask.

What’s going on Boom-boom? Bo asked. Bo had called Imogene Boom-Boom ever since she was old enough to walk. Bo had been given a plastic wifflel ball bat for his birthday. When Imogene had first discovered it, she ran as fast as a toddler can run all over the house clobbering everything that could not or did not get away fast enough. Imogene had boom-boomed the curtains, boob-boomed the couch, boom-boomed her dad Hank Hurleys feet and knee-caps and boom-boomed big brother Bo’s toy model cars in addition to big brother Bo’s head before the bat had finally been snatched away from her.

Imogene Hurley at such a young age
had taken the bat on a rampage
whacking and smacking everything in sight
each whack and smack to Imogene's delight
and since the day she whacked Bo’s head in his room
Imogene to Bo was known as Boom-Boom

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There's more where that came from!