Someone’s left you a voicemail message, but all you can make out are the last words: “I’m sorry. I should’ve told you months ago. Bye.” Who is it from, and what is this about?
I stood still, holding the phone to my ear long after it had turned off the call. I stared blindly out the front window, seeing nothing. I heard nothing, felt nothing. I don’t remember thinking, but I suppose you never stop thinking, not really.
Once I started to function again, my mind was flooded with possibilities. I hadn’t recognized the voice on the message. There was no familiar intonation, no accent, no speech pattern that gave me a clue. I wasn’t even sure if it was a man, woman, or child who had left the message.
“I’m sorry. I should’ve told you months ago. Bye.”
WHAT? Should have told me WHAT? That I had only six months to live, five months ago? The my husband was having an affair? Absurd! That my rich uncle had died and left me a millionaire? Yeah, like THAT would ever happen. Not too many rich uncles in my family.
I did a mental review of our finances. As far as I could see, no one was using our credit card numbers. Our bank account was just as it should be. All our bills were paid up to date, and our mortgage was actually ahead of schedule. So was my student loan. Nothing I could think of there.
Was it something about one of our kids? Was there a terminal illness they hadn’t wanted us to know about? One of the grandchildren?
I finally thought to punch in *69, but that got me nowhere. I checked on recent calls received, and the numbers that came up were all numbers I recognized, except for the last one. Caller unknown. Private number. So I tapped that call, hoping someone on the other end would pick up.
It rang once. . ..twice. . . . . beepbeepbeep. Then a dead line. I tried again, with the same results.
Wait. It was a voicemail, so I could replay it. I turned up the sound all the way, then hit voicemail and waited.
Static, breathing, and I think a dog barking in the background. More breathing. Finally, I heard, “Hello? This is.a;clsleockfj. We’re calling about qpwoeieiruitru. We want (giggle) to tell you (giggle) that zzzzzz/x.x,c,cvmvmn (gigglegigglegiggle) and sorry, I should’ve called you months ago. Bye.” (gigglegigglegiggle)
Remember the movie called We Know Who You Are, And We Saw What You Did? Silly young teens playing phone pranks ended in their making a call to someone who had just committed murder. He found them. I don’t remember how it ended. Maybe you do.
What you won’t know, ever, is how it ended for the silly little hooligans who thought they could fool ME!