I’ve been holding this one in for awhile. Here goes.
A Single Shade of Gray
The moment our eyes met, it was instant recognition. Or, I recognized him. If he knew that any of the party goers weren’t just animatronic mannequins, I’d have been surprised.
“Nice party,” I said, after working up the courage to approach him. “I like your house.”
He frowned, searching the immediate area around him with the same, vacant, glassy expression he had worn all evening. When he looked at me, the disappointment in his face was insulting. Later I realized that he was just disappointed that the invisible ghost who had spoken to him was in fact, an ordinary girl.
“Yeah, it’s okay,” he mumbled.
“Um, yeah, well I think the wallpaper is a very old William Morris, right? I’ve seen it before.”
“No, it’s definitely the same paper. I saw it in your bathroom. Every night, in fact.”
He seemed thoughtful, then shrugged. The subtlty was lost on him so I went for the jugular.
“Yeah, so, I was wondering if you needed blinds. For your bathroom. Because I see the wallpaper every night.”
“Nope. I’m good.”
“It’s just, my bedroom is right across from you and, well, I see your wall paper a lot. And I have some extra shades if you wanted to, you know, keep people from seeing your wallpaper.”
He shrugged again.
“No, I’m pretty comfortable.”
“Well, I’m not. I don’t want to see… your wallpaper, every time I walk into my bedroom.”
He looked at me with the fiercest scowl. Or, possibly the most indifferent look of pity, it was hard to tell with him.
“If it bothers you so much you could always pull the shades over your own window. It shouldn’t be a challenge since you apparently have a surplus on blinds.”
“What is your problem?”
“My problem is that I apparently live next door to a pervert who spies on me in the bathroom, ‘every night’ and she’s now standing in my own house telling me that she expects to be rewarded for her disturbing behavior.”
I threw my hands up and left the party. I fully intended to pull the shades over my bedroom window forever. Fifty, at least.