- Vol. 09
- Chapter 12
"Is this a prank?" I ask, looking for hidden cameras, craning my neck over the barbed fence, letting my eyes travel down the cobbled street lined with pink-block houses stacked high, wondering from which corner a cameraperson might emerge.
He's standing almost on the tail of my tiny pet kangaroo in a patch of prohibited neon-green grass, snug in a postman's uniform, head tilted, eyes searching mine, holding out a piece of paper which looks suspiciously like a letter.
"Envelopes are banned in the pink zone,"-I remind him in a hushed tone-"no snail correspondence."
I don't want my neighbours to overhear, or they'll be out with their disinfectant machine, hose my house down with liquid germicides, and probably drown the child.
"You are a child?" It comes out as a question. He rolls his eyes, takes a deep breath then huffs it out.
"You're Mrs P?" He's already certain but waits for my reply with raised eyebrows.
"This is an envelope-free zone," I remind him again, stepping back, then hopping forward and kicking some dirt on the patch of grass in a vain attempt to hide it. The startled little kangaroo hops away.
"A marsupial," he observes then, waves the letter. "You might be getting another one of these…soon."
I groan, flipping a finger at the sky where the satellite might be hovering, then glare at him.
"Hey, I'm just the messenger." He shrugs, his chubby cheeks dimpling as he purses his lips.
"So you are Mrs P," he confirms, shoving the letter under my nose.
Although I'm shaking my head, my tongue betrays me. "Yes," I mumble.
He nudges the document into my hand. I reluctantly take a corner between my forefinger and thumb like the tail of a dead rat.
"You have been served," he states before twirling 360° on his heels.
Wait, what? Words take form in my head, but he's already a speck in the mauve horizon before I can voice them.