G is for Grass is Greener

For today's challenge, I'm trying my hand at another story. Usually I like to keep things light and fun but somehow this story took a sinister turn which intrigued me so I went with it. Writing is such a magical and mysterious process and that's why I love it!

“Stop peering through the curtain, Janet. They’ll see you,” Hank said looking up from his morning paper.

“I’m trying to see the new neighbour. Sue said he’s a TV star.”

“You’re too nosy. You need to get a new hobby,” Hank said looking over his reading glasses in disapproval.

Or a new hubby, Janet thought to herself. Couldn’t Hank put on a shirt at least? Gone were the days when she grew hot and bothered at the sight of Hank’s bare physique. Now she was just bothered.

She turned back to look at the man who had just stepped out of his BMW.  Surely it wouldn’t hurt to go say hello and welcome him to the neighbourhood. She’d bring him some of the cookies she’d just baked this morning for her grandsons Bobby and Jack.

She checked her reflection and frowned. Sighing, she put on a clean grey cardigan and brushed her greying hair. When she was a young woman, she’d dreamed of being an actress. By the time she was 20, she was married to Hank and the mother of two small children. It was too late now but that didn’t mean she couldn’t mingle with celebrities at least.

“I’m going to meet the new neighbour,” Janet called out to Hank without listening for an answer. Crossing the driveway, she hesitated. Maybe this was a bad idea.

“Why hello there!” the man said catching sight of her. He grinned and showed off his perfectly straight white teeth.

“Hi, I’m Janet. I live on the other side of the fence,” she said smiling. “Welcome to the neighbourhood. Aren’t you Dan Mahone, that TV game show host of How Smart Are You?” She handed him the plate of cookies.

“Yeh, that’s me,” he said, taking the plate and giving the celebrity smile that made her knees go rubbery. He bit into a cookie and put the plate down on top of a box.

Janet tried not to stare but couldn’t help herself. He was so good looking with his perfectly-styled dark hair, manicured nails, designer suit and shoes. Hank hadn’t worn a suit since they went to Aunt Helen’s funeral last summer and tended to prefer baggy sweatpants and stained t-shirts.

“So do you want to come in?” Dan said. “It’s a bit of a mess with all the boxes. You know how it is.” He shrugged and grinned again.

“Need any help unpacking?” Janet offered.

“Why sure,” Dan said. He showed her where the boxes were in the kitchen and she unloaded the dishes and pots and pans. Half an hour passed and there was no sign of Dan anywhere.

An hour later, Dan returned. Two scantily-clad young women with bleached hair clung to him, vying for his attention. His hair was rumpled and he wore a blue silk bathrobe. He turned to Janet. “If you’re done here, you could start on the living room. Oh, by the way, could you make us some sandwiches? There’s stuff in the fridge.”

 “I’d better go,” Janet said, edging towards the door. “Hank will be wondering where I am.”

Dan blocked the doorway with his arm and looked down at Janet, a seductive look on his face.

 “Maybe you’d like to join us.”  He smiled that smile that Janet was starting to find more sinister than sexy.

““You make me sick,” Janet said in disgust.

“Oh, come on, Dan. Let Grandma go. That’s just too weird, even for me,” one of the girls said giggling.

“Besides, you’re not paying us enough,” the other girl said.

Janet ran out the door, her cheeks burning with anger and shame. She saw the cookies still on the box and grabbed the plate as she passed by. She rushed to where Hank was watching the news on TV and threw her arms around his neck.

“What is it Janet?” Hank said, hugging her close.

“Nothing,” Janet said, sobbing. “I’m just appreciating what I have.”

“The grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence, is it? Sometimes you find poison ivy instead,” Hank said, patting her on the back.

“So true,” Janet said hugging Hank harder.


  1. A nice one, Cat. Sometimes the green grass on the other side could just be astroturf! :)

    1. Hahaha! So true, OG. So true. Thanks for commenting.

  2. Awwww I love it! I l o v e it! It's so true.
    I've read a few posts today about gratitude but this story is the best way of saying it! Well done!

    1. Thanks, Franny. I guess it is about gratitude, isn't it? I wasn't sure how this story would end up which is the fun of writing.

  3. That was SO WELL DONE. You certainly had me feeling all your emotions, right from anticipation t anger. You are right, the grass is RARELY greener.....

    1. Thanks, Carol. I enjoyed writing this story. I like it when my darker side emerges now and then as usually I like it light and humourous. I still try to be positive though.

  4. Excellent! I particularly loved the: "Or a new hubby, Janet thought to herself. Couldn’t Hank put on a shirt at least? Gone were the days when she grew hot and bothered at the sight of Hank’s bare physique. Now she was just bothered." -- I laughed aloud there.

  5. Thanks, Loni. Glad you enjoyed it. I had to have a bit of humour in with all that sordid stuff.

  6. Awww... Loved this story! Glad she found her way home! And you nailes it with bits of humour! :) Aditi, dropping from A2Z

  7. Nice story, lovely. Although I find it hard being married to a guy who thinks the grass is greener somewhere else. So nice to connect and follow http://aimingforapublishingdeal.blogspot.co.uk/

    1. Yes, my hubs is like that, too, convinced others are doing better than we are which I'm sure they're not. Thanks for dropping by. Will check out your blog, too.

  8. Cat, O Wildcat! What a story! And where have you been all my fiction-reading life? :D Loved this. Writing fiction is so much fun, right? I started a few months ago and can totally relate to the fact that the direction just changes without warning. Loved this!

    ~Shailaja's post

    1. Awww, thanks, Shailaja. So sweet of you to say this. Writing fiction is a lot of fun. I'm not much for non fiction. Too much like work. Fiction is playtime, don't you agree?

  9. Haha! Appearances are often deceiving, aren't they? Loved it, Cat! ☺

    1. Thanks, Debbie. I didn't expect my story to have than sinister twist but thought it was fun to go with it and see what happened.


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