“Hey, Bec.” Damien said wearily as he walked through the glass front door.
His wife had seen him coming through the living room window, and had already shut off the TV and crossed into the kitchen to meet him.
“Hey, honey.” Becca gave him a kiss on the cheek. “I was wondering where you were… Wasn’t your shift supposed to be over at 8 tonight?” She asked.
Her husband nodded.
“I’m guessing it was another stressful day…”
“Yeah… you could say that.” He tried to smile.
Becca sighed. “Look honey, I know you’ve been super busy lately… but you can’t forget that you’ve gotta try to be home on time tomorrow… I mean, we don’t wanna make the kids wait any longer than they already have to.”
“’Wait’?” Damien asked, confused. “For what?”
His wife rolled her eyes, seemingly caught between annoyance and amusement. “Tomorrow’s the big day, remember? When we’ll find out if it’s a boy or a girl!” She said excitedly. “They’re gonna bring the envelope over tomorrow night so we can open it together.”
“Oh yeah!” Damien suddenly remembered. “I don’t know how I forgot… That’s really thoughtful of them.”
“Exactly.” Becca said. “That’s why I don’t want to keep them waiting. So… if you think you’re gonna be late, can you at least try to call, sweetie? I know that can be easier said than done sometimes, but…”
“I will, don’t worry.” He assured her.
“Thanks.” His wife smiled. “You look exhausted… Why don’t you go up to bed? I’ll be up in a minute, I’m just gonna grab some water.”
Damien smiled and headed upstairs to change while Becca crossed over toward the fridge.
“You’ve gotta be kidding me.” She grumbled angrily.
The refrigerator was making a strange buzzing noise, and a puddle of water had begun to form on the kitchen floor.
Again? Seriously?! Becca could hardly believe it.
The Ainsworths had been dealing with a bizarre string of issues with their appliances over the last several months.
“Isn’t it the cutest little thing?” Becca gushed as she showed Damien the sonogram photo for what must have been the hundredth time. “I think the baby has Lucas’ nose, don’t you? Definitely Mel’s chin though…”
“Honey.” Damien chuckled. “I’m just as excited about being a grandparent as you are. But it’s a grainy, black-and-white photo of a partially developed fetus. It doesn’t look like anyone yet, Bec. It’s –”
“What the hell?” Becca asked in surprise, looking up at the TV.
The picture had begun to stretch and distort itself, and the audio of the movie they’d been watching was replaced with a high-pitched screech. Then, the screen went black.
“Shit…” Damien muttered. “Guess that’s a sign we need an upgrade.” He sighed. “We have had that old thing for years…”
“Oh, you’re no fun, Damien!” Becca laughed. “Come on, just guess – boy or girl?”
Her husband just shrugged. “I still don’t see why it matters. As long as the baby’s happy and healthy, who cares?”
“Well of course it doesn’t really matter.” She rolled her eyes. “We’re gonna love our grandchild no matter what. But I can’t believe that you don’t—” Becca stopped herself and looked around curiously. “Do you hear that?” She asked.
There was a strange gurgling sound coming from somewhere nearby.
Damien peered over at the hot tub, cursing under his breath. “We just had it fixed last month!”
The kitchen sink, the downstairs bathtub, the TV, the stereo, the hot tub (twice), and now the refrigerator… Becca shook her head in disbelief. It’s like we’re cursed or something… Jeez.
She sighed softly to herself, flicked off the light, and headed upstairs to bed.