The Dreadful Gray Shutters

The goal of this prompt was to write a parents view of a son/daughter-in-law in both a negative and positive light without giving explicit remarks about the person but unveiling those feelings through objects in or about a house. Hope you enjoy!

Negative view.

Katherine shuffled her feet as she took her nightly stroll around the block. Her two children, Sara and Stephen, had lives of their own and Katherine’s husband Tom refuse to retire, saying the only thing he had waiting for him after retirement was death. Katherine’s days were comprised of planning family get togethers, reading done store romance novels, and worrying about her kids as they went about their lives outside her nest.

Katherine was halfway down the block when an old two-story ranch style house caught her eye. The chipped paint and discolored wooden front door wore the age of the house like the tattered old college shirt Tom refused to throw out. The driveway with cracked, making it unlevel and hazardous. The grass was uncut, forming its own forest-like ecosystem, and the bushes were massive.

Katherine studied the house, looking at the dreadful gray shutters outlining the windows. Katherine was quickly reminded of her son-in-law. The shudders would obviously need to be redone or scrapped altogether but due to his laziness and lack of class the burden would likely fall to Sara had this been their house. Sara Thought her husband Luke’s need to be taken care of was charming although Katherine had recognized the trap from the onset. Luke would have Sara tie his shoes for him if he didn’t already slip them on.

Sara’s precious romantic endeavors all involved projects, boys that she thought she could help evolve into men, like caterpillars to butterflies. However, each had crashed and burned and left Sara heartbroken and not any sliver wiser as a result. The difference now was that she took Luke’s last name and was now chained to him. Sara squinted at the old house with disdain, the house being a direct reflection of how she interpreted Luke’s personality. Thinking of the decisions her daughter had made and the ones she would come to make made Katherine hang her head with both worry and annoyance. She shuffled her feet as she continued down the block.

Good view.

Katherine shuffled her feet as she took her nightly stroll around the block. Her two children, Sara and Stephen, had lives of their own and Katherine’s husband Tom refuse to retire, saying the only thing he had waiting for him after retirement was death. Katherine’s days were comprised of planning family get togethers, reading done store romance novels, and worrying about her kids as they went about their lives outside her nest.

Katherine was halfway down the block when an old two-story ranch style house caught her eye. The chipped paint and discolored wooden front door wore the age of the house like the tattered old college shirt Tom refused to throw out. The driveway with cracked, making it unlevel and hazardous. The grass was uncut, forming its own forest-like ecosystem, and the bushes were massive.

The dreadful gray shutters and roof with missing tiles would certainly need to be redone and it reminded Katherine of her son-in-law. When Sara brought Luke to meet the family for the first time, Katherine was impressed with his manners and politeness. She even found him handsome. She noticed when they first shook hands, Luke’s were thick and calloused. Luke explained to her that he worked construction and when he wasn’t working, he was in school to get his degree in construction management. He was a smart young man and one that Katherine could feel safe about her daughter starting a life with.

Sara had her checkered past of failed relationships and awful boyfriends. She would date boys she thought she could evolve into men, like caterpillars to butterflies, and they would crash and burn. Sara would be left heartbroken and not a sliver wiser, only to do the same thing with the next project. Katherine was relieved when she met Luke and saw that he wasn’t a project but a full-grown man deserving of her daughter. Luke would look at the house and see a challenge. He would scrap the shutters, afix brand new ones, replace the roofing tile, get the house in tip-top shape. From the way Sara described him, Luke loved a challenge and liked hard work. He busted his hump and believed every man should. For once, Sara had a man that would make her better, not just one Sara would hope to make better.

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