The young lady was adamant. She’d known this neighborhood since childhood. Classic brick row houses, a block over from the old part of town.
“Ma’am, nothing there but an empty door frame. The building’s been gone for a long time.”
She stared at the empty lot through the door frame, dumfounded. Then she studied the old man talking to her. He seemed honest enough. But she wasn’t so sure.
“Okay, come on now, jokes on me, very funny!” She feigned laughter.
“Ma’am, I’ve never seen ya before. God’s truth I’m not lying. Ain’t no one lived there since Nixon was president.”
It didn’t make any sense. She’d spent all day with him, right there, just yesterday. She’d been seeing him there for several months. He’d become the focus of her world. Inseparable. And just like that, he was gone, and she was all alone.
She knew he said odd things. But he always had that grin, which she took to mean he wasn’t serious.
“Oh dear lord he wasn‘t joking,” she muttered under her breath.
He’d told her he was only there for a short time. That he was on a mission. From God. Visions of “Blues Brothers” always ran through her head and drowned him out whenever he’d go into his mission-from-God stuff. Besides, he was gorgeous. She never much listened to what he said. She just enjoyed the sound of his voice. And staring him up and down. She KNEW there had to be a catch, but she never imagined it would be a supernatural one.
She kissed him once. And then again, the other day. Some of the only times he’d let her touch him. A brief peck on the lips, but each time a bolt of energy surged through her that sent her flying. She assumed he was just being a gentleman, but she wondered if maybe he was afraid to touch her. Afraid he might hurt her.
She kicked at the debris strewn about the lot, each stone another memory, another moment with him.
“I’m from the fifth dimension,” he would tell her.
She’d asked him how he got around, because he never had a car or any transportation. “I just walk through a portal. Or fly, if I feel like it.”
She yelled his name several times. Maybe the “fifth dimension” was within shouting distance.
“Fifth dimension,” she mumbled. “I’ve lost my mind.” Her thoughts were racing through the possibilities. Had she entered his dimension all those times they spent together? The “house” was immaculate inside, colors so vibrant they made her high.
“Maybe I traveled in time,” she thought. Where exactly was the fifth dimension, anyway? She wished she’d paid more attention to what he told her. She had so many questions.
Reluctantly, she walked out into street. Nothing made sense anymore.
“Say, miss, I don’t suppose you could help me out? Miss?” Jolted from her thoughts, she noticed the old man talking to her.
“I’m sorry. I sorta zoned out there. What’ya…” She stopped mid sentence. He had been beaten. Severely. She pulled out her phone. “Who do I need to call? Do you have any family nearby?”
He did not. He lived alone.
“Mission from God,” she mumbled while dialing 911. “I got this.”
Arm-in-arm, they slowly made their way along the tree-lined avenue.
“By the way, I’m Susan.”
“My wife’s name was Susan.” He managed a broad grin. They hobbled along together, disappearing into the distance — street lights flickering, moon waxing — beneath an autumn sky.