The first thing I see in the morning is a mess of thick black hair, splayed out like angel wings on the pillow just in front of my face.
"Morning, baby." I whisper, reaching out and gently running my hand along my wife's shoulder. She mumbles something, still in a deep sleep, and then sighs heavily. I smirk to myself, once again forgetting that Ali is not a morning person.
I decide to leave her to her rest, for the time being, as I toss back my bedcovers and swing my legs to the floor and right into my slippers, which I had conveniently placed at the foot of my bed this morning. Today's a Saturday, so I don't have to go work, or meet with my investor today. Still, my body and mind are programmed to one ongoing schedule. Even though it's Saturday morning and my head is still hazy from just having woken up, I take a shower and slip on a bath robe, brushing my teeth and making sure my appearance is perfect before I head downstairs to make breakfast.
Before I head downstairs, though, I always make sure to peek my head into the doorway just opposite Ali and mine. Inside is a small office, not like the one I have at work, but an office nonetheless, complete with a desk, numerous bookshelves, reading lamps, etc, etc. But I don't just randomly stick my head into this room every morning for no reason. Oh no. You see, on the far end of the room, there's this grand window, perhaps one of the largest in the house, where you can see directly outside, to all of the surrounding neighborhoods and cities. It's a spectacular view. I admire it, as does Ali, but none of us can compete for love of the view with Evita, our dazzlingly snow-white dog. She sits there every morning, curled up on the wide window ledge, nose pressed against the glass as her eyes dart back and fourth between people and cars. I'm lucky she isn't awake yet, if she was, she'd be barking her head off…as much as I love her, the barking can be a little too much.
Ever so slowly, as to not wake her up, I walk inside the room and over to the window, looking out of it as well. Not much goes on in my neighborhood at 7:00 AM on a Saturday. But today, my neighbor, Sarah, was standing just outside her driveway, talking with a man in a red sweatshirt. That's odd…I was never aware of Sarah being the type of person to have friends. Obnoxious little bitch. She always complains about our dog, and how we do nothing to shut her up. Well, maybe I'd do something about my dog if she did something about those awful hedges that border her property line. They look horrible.
I smirk at myself, happy with my clever, yet unsaid comeback to her snide complaints. I then turn, exit the room, and walk downstairs into the kitchen. After rummaging around in the cabinets for a moment or so, I decide to make Ali and myself French toast and cheese omelets with red and green bell peppers. It may surprise you to know that I actually do most of the cooking in this household. Not that Ali is incompetent, she just prefers not to.
Within a few minutes, I'm standing by the stove and preparing the omelet, watching it closely to make sure it does not burn. I poke it with the spatula in my hand once, and was about to poke it again when I froze completely.
I could've sworn I heard a door opening and closing over the sizzling breakfast, and not just a door….a big, heavy, wooden oak door. A front door noise.
A little nervous, I call out to my wife.
"IN THE BATHROOM, HON!" she shouts back. I sigh in relief. Maybe I'm just imagining something. I return to my eggs, and am about to take them off of the pan with the spatula when I hear yet another noise that makes me jump.
Evita has started barking again, which is usually normal, but this time, they are high pitched, whiney, and faster paced. They sound almost frantic. I'm about to put down my spatula and go see what's causing her to bark in such a manner, when I notice something even more odd about the barking. Not only is it panicky, it seems to be getting closer, and closer…
Now I do put down my spatula, but just before I can turn, a dazzlingly snow-white blur falls past our window and lands with a thud – and a yelp – on the ground.