Night Walking (part 11)

“Good God what now?” Patty lamented as a loud knock sounded at their front door.

“Probably Tammy,” Phil said, wiping pizza sauce from his chin. “I asked her to ask her mom and come help me feed the opossum.”

“That doesn’t sound like a little girl knock,” Patty said as he put his hand on the doorknob. His wife was right. Tammy stood in front of a stocky woman Phil assumed was her mother by the possessive way her hands rested on the little girl’s shoulders.

“Hello, Tammy,” Phil said. “This must be your—”

“I’m her mother,” the woman announced. “Do you mind telling me what you’re planning to do with my daughter?”’

“I—” Phil began.’

“She’s giving me some cockamamy story about an old lady giving her some possum thing, and you wanting her to help you save it? Isn’t that some kind of rodent?”

“Technically, they’re marsupials—” Phil began.

“And why would you want to save one?”

Phil nodded at the broad faced woman. “That’s pretty much the story,” he said, filling in the part about his mother being hit and Tammy calling 9-1-1.
“Your daughter really saved Phil’s mother’s life,” Patty said before Tammy’s mother could say anything. She’d joined them mid-way through Phil’s explanation.

“Would you like to come in, uh…”

“Sandy,” Tammy’s mother said.

Introductions were made and Patty asked if they could stay for dinner. “It’s just pizza tonight, but there’s plenty,” Patty said.

“No, thanks,” Sandy replied. “My boyfriend’s taking us all out. Anyways, I gotta get going. I just had to check on her story. Tammy lies sometimes.”

Phil cleared his throat. “Well, not this time,” he said, feeling embarrassed for the girl was flushing furiously and staring at her shoes. “Do we have your permission to help me feed and care for the opossum?”

“Well, I guess. Seems kind of ridiculous to save something like that, but whatever,” Sandy said. “Just so long as it don’t interfere with her schoolwork or with her watching her sisters when I need her to.”

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