E-assignment 4 - Free format

It's been a ditzy sort of day so this will be a ditzy short story. I do hope I can bring a smile to your day. /N

The Spatula

“Oh great!”

The smoke detector went off again. Smoke filled the sorry excuse for a kitchen I had when I opened the door to the oven. I sent up a silent prayer to the powers that be that nobody had called the fire department on me... again. Last time they had let me off with a warning. This time there would be a fine. What can I say, I love to bake. I’m just not good at it yet. I shut the smoke detector up by throwing my spatula at it. That’ll teach it to not beep at false alarms!

You know those non-stick teflon muffin trays? Well, let’s say, they’re not non-stick. Last time I baked I had to pry the charcoal remains of my attempt to make chocolate muffins from the so-called non-stick tray with a chisel. Good thing I have a toolbox.

No sirens so far... Almost too good to be true. Not that I mind talking to a handsome firefighter, but the fine? Not so fine. But it seems to me I’m clear now. If the fire department doesn’t have better response time than this, it’s no use calling them at all. Maybe I’d better get rid of the latest disaster. Carrot cakes aren’t supposed to look like someone threw up in a barbecue right? At least the picture in the cookbook doesn’t look anything remotely like the result I got. Now, where did I put the potholders?

Yikes! The potholders! Yellow flames flared up from the potholder caught on fire. Soon the curtains would go up in flames and everything. More smoke filled the little apartment. I heard sirens in the distance drawing nearer. Then nothing.

When I woke up I was dangling upside down. And moving.

“Hey! What’s going on?” I coughed.

I noticed my spatula beside the phone and grabbed it as I passed by the table. I started to whack whatever it was that was carrying me. All I could see was a pair of legs dressed in seriously dirty yellow pants and a pair of booted feet.

The “whatever” did not stop until it had carried me out of the building and dropped me unceremoniously into a waiting ambulance. The spatula was gently removed from my hand.
The doors to the ambulance closed and all I remember from the drive to the hospital was the oxygen mask I didn’t want to wear and coughing. Lots of coughing.

Apparently one of my neighbours had called the fire department from the beeping of the smoke detector. Probably to teach me a lesson. And it did. I had to stay at the hospital for two days due to smoke inhalation. With no cell phone and no internet connection. Not even a cute doctor. What I did get was two visitors.

First to see me was my best friend. We giggled. Well, she giggled, I coughed. She told me that just about everything I owned, including my books had turned to ashes, but that I was welcome to stay at her place until I could get somewhere else to live. It wasn’t even a request, it was an order.

Day two I had almost worn out the remote control to the tv by channel surfing. Nothing good on anyway, except a couple of cooking shows. I threw a pillow at the tv for those. I had laid down for a nap when I heard giggling in the hallway outside my door. Giggling? Okay, no more sulking. I gotta know what this is about.

I hauled my butt out of bed. Trying to straighten the, uglier than just about anything, hospital thingy they make you wear, I made my way to the door. I peeked out. The giggling seemed to emanate from the nurses station around the corner down the hall. Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it had certainly not harmed me any. Not yet anyway and you’re supposed to be quite safe in a hospital. Right?

I checked behind me to make sure nobody saw my behind and skulked to the corner and peeked around it. A seriously handsome man with a bunch of flowers and a bag leaned against the counter. So that’s what the nurse on duty was giggling about. Well, heck, I would probably be giggling too. Or mumbling gibberish and acting like a fool in general. Like usual.

In an attempt to sneak around the corner without actually being noticed I stepped on the hem of the hospital gown and toppled over a nearby table sending a potted plant straight into a wall. So much for sneaking... I probably wouldn’t be a very good spy. On the other hand, maybe I would be. Nobody would ever think of clumsy me as a spy.

The nurse came running to check on me of course. That was her job. She tried to help me up. No good. Legs wouldn’t keep steady. I was probably still weak from smoke inhalation. The handsome stranger had dropped both flowers and bag and come over. Suddenly I found myself dangling upside down again.

“Hey! What’s going on? Put me down! My butt is showing in this gown!”

“It looks good from my point of view” he said. “Where do you want her?” he asked the stunned nurse.

“Well, room 14... It is actually her you’re looking for.”

What? A stranger, and handsome at that, looking for me? Why? A foggy memory of dangling upside down entered my brain. Nah! This isn’t happening. Seriously?

He put me down on my bed and went to fetch his stuff while the nurse checked me for damages. There were none, thankfully. I would probably get a bruise or two in a couple of days, but nothing serious.

He came back into the room, put the flowers in a vase and sat down on a chair.

“Hello, I’m Zack.” He extended his hand in greeting. “I believe I have something of yours.” He reached into the bag and hauled out my spatula.

I closed my eyes. This isn’t happening. It can’t be happening. I had spanked a firefighter saving my life with a plastic spatula. Of all the stupid things to do...

“I have something else for you. He’s a bit singed, but probably happy to see you anyway. I was looking for you in your bed first and found him. I figured he was some well-loved childhood memento you wanted to keep.”

He pulled out my old, scruffy, stuffed dog from the bag. I hugged my most precious possession and realized that everything would be okay. I had my friends, I had my dog and maybe even a new man-friend if I read the sparkling blue eyes right....


Heather said...

Nicely done, Nina! I must admit to being a bit shocked though - the fireman's name wasn't Zack?? *WEG*

Nina said...

Ah... my mistake. I will fix it. :)


Maggie Nash said...

I Love cute fireman stories!

Heather said...

Maggie~ Who doesn't?? *g*

Nina~ You've been TAGGED. See blog for details. ;)

Maggie Nash said...

Darn, I was going to tag you!!!

Nina said...

I feel popular... :)

I will do this. I just have to figure out if I know five people that own blogs. Can think of three. Does it count if I'm so tired I'm seeing double? :)