Jeanne Lips

Dressed in her black mu-mu, she fed her fish Benjie that was bejeweled with a solitaire ruby that pierced its fin. She took enjoyment watching Benjie endlessly make U-turns in the aquarium.
She went out on the veranda and smoked a cigarette and sipped a martini and thought about the sexiness of the sleek fish and the balmy Florida weather.
She asked herself, “Does life get any better than this?”
Life could have been better though, had it not been for the drama at Bingo night last Friday.
Martha was not speaking to her because, according to her, she won too many times at Bingo and it was becoming very “fishy.”
She couldn’t help it if her cards were lucky and Martha’s hearing was getting worse. Maybe she should sabotage the game to appease Martha?
Hell no, she thought.
That night, when the sun went down and the geckos hid in her gnome-strewn garden, she watched the drama unfold on television as the Bachelorette visited the hometowns of the potential suitors. She wish she could call Martha and discuss the fact that Gracie should have given Chris a rose because his alcoholic parents humiliated him in front of the poor girl. But she would have to dither over it by herself until tomorrow night when she would see Martha in person at Bingo night.
She turned off the television and took her heart medication and out of nowhere she heard a popping noise outside. It sounded like firecrackers but it wasn’t the Fourth of July. She went outside to see what was going on in her quaint cul-de-sac in Ocala.
The Goldstein’s house was swarming with police officers. What was going on? She liked the Goldsteins, even though they left their Labradoodle’s mess in her yard sometimes. How could she not have heard this commotion in the neighborhood?
She went back in the house to get a new hearing aid, and turned the volume up and went back outside to listen to what was going on.

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