By the next Friday the post will be taken down and a new one will go up...except this one. Enjoy!
Pamela turned her head and looked over her shoulder, then stopped. The flames were racing down the hill and Estabon was still in the trees.
“Run!” she shouted, much to the anguish of Estabon who’d hoped to see her run on.
They’d been up in the tree line getting Pamela’s prized gnomes down, especially the smaller ones whose coats she’d hand-painted. Estabon was now racing down the hill with a good half-dozen of the things in his arms, others bouncing and trailing behind him.
“Run, Estabon!” Billy shouted.
Pamela turned and frowned down at him. “Get inside – get your sister inside, now!”
“But mom, I–”
“Now!” Pamela screamed in his face.
Billy closed his eyes to shield them against the blast of wind from his mother, which was worse than many from the fire they’d felt on the hill. He turned and grabbed his sister and rushed to the sliding glass door on the other side of the pool.
“Run, honey!” Pamela shouted up at Estabon now that the kids were heading inside.
The flames were edging closer, swallowing up the conifers as the wind pushed them downhill.
“Oh, no!” she said quietly as her eyes widened. There above the trees flames were beginning to lick at the sky, then jump, small balls of red and orange and yellow rising higher into the wind and then falling further down the hill. One landed in a tree beside Estabon, a full hundred yards ahead of the main blaze. Another fell twenty yards ahead of him, and then another –
“Aaahhh!” Pamela screamed as a flaming ball of tree branch and soot fell down on Mr. Fiddles, one of her most-prized gnomes, a jolly white-bearded fellow with a red hat and blue shirt, pipe in his mouth and hammer over his shoulder. The poor lawn ornament never saw it coming.
The force of the flaming branch shattered Mr. Fiddles and broke him into several dozen smaller pieces. Pamela screamed again as a rather large chunk – half of Mr. Fiddles’ face, the part with the pipe sticking from the mouth – fell to her feet, then rushed forward to try and put him back together again. Another flaming ball shot down.
“No!” Estabon shouted when he saw the sight, and he dropped the four remaining gnomes that were in his hands and started to rush down.
Pamela’s disregard for her husband’s shouts in favor of Mr. Fiddles’ needs probably saved her life. As it was, the flaming ball of sap flying straight for his wife landed on her head instead of her face and immediately caught her hair on fire.
“Honey, no!” Estabon shouted as he made it the last few feet to the large wall the shored-up the hillside and separated the house from the wilderness beyond. He jumped down the ten feet and landed with an ‘oomph’ before getting back up.
“Jump in the pool mom, jump in the pool!” Billy shouted from behind the sliding glass door, but it was no use – his mother had lost her senses.
Estabon rushed forth and slammed into her, propelling her with his bulk toward the pool. He kept up the momentum while holding his own head and face back from the flaming inferno that was his wife’s once-beautiful hair. Together they went over the edge and slammed into the water and then beneath, the flames going out with an agonizing hiss of defiance and rage.
“Hyuh!” Estabon sucked in a breath a few moments later as he reached the surface and pulled Pamela up behind him.
“My hair!” she shouted out, then “Hyuh!” as she too took in a breath.
Estabon looked over at her, then winced, a sight she caught.
“Oh God…how bad is it?” she said in a voice that foretold tears.
“It…it…it looks great, honey…honest!”
“Mom, mom, are you al…holy fuck!
“Billy!” Estabon shouted, looking up at his step-son sharply before turning back to his wife. Her eyes welled-up and her face became scrunched and then the torrent of tears and crying began.
“It’s not that bad!” Estabon shouted as he started pulling Pamela toward the edge of the pool. “With the right wig and a little–”
There was an explosion and then a huge orange and red fireball shot into the air from the corner of the yard near the high wall.
“The barbeque!” Billy shouted. “Awesome!”
“C’mon, let’s get inside,” Estabon shouted as he got out of the pool and then pulled Pamela up after him, “before it’s too late!”