The Best Weather

Ezra Azra

Copyright 2023 by Ezra Azra

Photo by Jvalenciazz Jhon at Pexels.
Photo by Jvalenciazz Jhon at Pexels. 

Whether or not to leave Granny alone at home while she was away out of town for two days, was a painful internal soliloquy going on in her adult Granddaughter, Yvonne.

Yvonne had offered to pay all Granny's expenses to accompany her, but Granny had insisted it was important for Yvonne's personal independence that she, Yvonne, go alone. Besides, Granny had observed, there was a snowstorm forecast; somebody should be at home when the storm struck.

Over the years the crime rate in the City had been increasing. Home invasions was second to only car-jackings.

The Mayor was desperate. He put out an appeal for suggestions from all citizens. He had already doubled both the City Police annual budget, and the number of Police officers.

Granny was utterly intolerant of the Mayor's plight. As far as she was concerned, he was the only culprit to blame for most of the City's exponential increasing crime rate, for allowing illegal immigrants unlimited accommodation in the City.

The elephant in every room in the City when the crime rate was discussed, was to what extent were the illegal immigrants the cause? Despite it being as blatantly obvious as it was, nobody in authority was making an attempt to provide figures.

Granny was disgusted with the nation-wide deliberate willingness to bleach the word illegal of its primary and only meaning.

The prevalence of crime in the City was not the main source of Yvonne's pain. Granny, herself, was.

If Granny knew just how much Yvonne was agonizing whether she should suffer the consequences to her professional career by not going to the appointment out of town, or to endure the pain, and go, her anger would have been at near-incinerating intensity against her favourite Grandchild.

Yvonne was well aware of this probability; and it hurt. Yvonne especially admired and loved Granny for the caliber of personality whom Granny had become. At the same time, Yvonne was painfully intimidated by Granny's total imperviousness to the notion that Granny being alone in their home at any time, could put Granny's safety at risk.

Granny was a retired Captain from the Nation's Armed Forces. She had served in two wars. She had a box-full of medals for achievements in battle. In their home, she had twelve kinds of guns, and weapons. She still attended gun-range practice once a month, achieving perfect scores, so far. And, equally so far, Granny refuse to speak about, either war wounds she might have suffered that left scars, or how many of the enemy she had killed in battle.

Granny was in unconditional support of Yvonne going to the out-of-town job, interview. It was healthy for their familial relationship that Granny was totally unaware of Yvonne's painful concern for her safety during her, Yvonne's, absence.

At some other time, Granny might have surrendered to her Granddaughter's Granny concerns. At that point in time, however, Granny was insistent that, because of the impending storm and the City's high crime rate, it was safer for one of them to remain in the home at all times.

Before Yvonne drove off, she assured Granny she would be in constant phone and email touch.

Within the hour, the snowstorm struck with unusual elemental fury. The soldier in Granny was unaffected by the chaotic disturbance outside by the spitefully stinging violent wind, and the blinding sheets of wet-heavy snow.

From upstairs, Granny's military-honed hearing discerned a particularly different kind of acoustic energy among the myriad of storm sounds. She went to the window above the front door.

In the night darkness the swirling falling snow refracted sufficient light to reveal a heavily-clad figure pounding on the door; its loud unintelligible shouting was distinctly, though ever-so-feintly, registered by Granny's perfect hearing. She pressed the intercom button, and called out.

"Sorry, we cannot let you in. If the door is opened, the snow and the wind will prevent us from closing it, again! Please, leave! I'm sorry."

The figure had paused to listen, but resumed pounding with increased vigor and louder shouting after Granny stopped speaking.

Granny hastily and meticulously dressed for the occasion. She armed herself with a long-gun shot-gun loaded with blanks, and a handgun, loaded with live rounds, in a holster under her heavy military-style coat. She had no uncertainty as to whether she would use the one gun, or the other. Or both.

The hood, which was part of her coat, was the only non-military feature of her clothing.

She went to the rear of the upstairs. She let herself down by rope through a window, all especially installed long ago for just such a need.

The blinding blowing swirling snow was already inches thick against the walls of the home. The roar of the winds would make sounds of her descent undetectable to any would-be ambushers on the ground below, already hidden in a foot of snow.

She landed, guiding herself down noiselessly. Noiselessly was unnecessary in the storm all around, but Granny's military mode was not optional under any circumstances.
She hid the rope under the snow piling up against the wall. She unslung the shotgun from her back. She carefully ploughed her way around the home towards the front door. It was slow and uncomfortably difficult progress through the unsympathetic spitefully angry weather, in night darkness. She turned the corner, and was not surprised at what she saw at the far corner of the wall. She had armed herself because, all along, she had suspected the probability.

Two heavily clothed figures, pressing themselves tightly against the wall in the snow; completely out of range of her upstairs window above the front door. Although she had not seen them from her window, she had instantly sensed such a danger attached to the figure banging on the door, and shouting.

Granny was certain nobody in the neighborhood would hear the shots she fired, blanks and live.

At some time during the night, the falling snow changed to rain. For the next few hours, the City streets would be sluggish-flowing rivers of debris-cluttered water.

There would be no forensic evidence to link Granny to three corpses floating far away from her home.

When she was awakened at mid-morning from a sound sleep by the phone ringing, there was no doubt in her sleepy mind whether it would be Yvonne, or the Police.  

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