Hollow part 11 Apr11
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Hollow part 11


Knock, Knock!!! There was a loud knocking at the door.


“Who the devil?!” From inside came tight voice. Knock!!! Knock!!! “I’m coming! I’m coming!”


“Who’s there?!!” The door opened suddenly, showing a stout man with red, bristling, moustache and brown hair. His face was as red as a crayfish. Eli noticed big bags under his eyes and strange smell, coming out from his full mouth. A white, v-necked shirt with collar and long sleeves, was showing from under his loosely buckled trousers.


“Oh! It’s you Miss Gutmann. You could wake up a dead knocking like this.”


“I’m sorry for inconvenience Mr. Kopfbyn, but can I come in?”


The man wrinkled his eyebrows.


“Oh, yes. Of course.” he said that, moving aside. Eli came to a small hall that led to a room.


“We all are delighted your work here, Miss. She heard his voice behind her back, entering the room. “Your predecessor was a good man, but he didn’t have such zeal like you Miss. ”


Eli glanced at the man, didn’t know what to answer and then she concentrated on the inside. The first thing that she saw in the room, was a big, white stove, on which were hanging plates, bowls, spoons, pans and other things, used in the kitchen. Next to the stove stood big wooden table, covered by a white sheet that was full of dirty dishes. In the corner of the room was a small bed, on which sat about three years old boy. On the walls hang icons and laces. On the other side of room was door to the second room.


“Please, sit down”. Said mayor, taking dirty dishes off from the table.

Eli noticed some bottles of alcohols, lying on the ground. The man’s eyes also rested on empty glasses. He throated nervously and then shouted: “Gouda!!! Gouda!!!”


“Lately, I have a lot of guest.” He grinned, laying for the bottles.


After a while, from a door, leading to the second room, came a young woman, which could be in Eli’s age. In arms she held crying baby. Her thin nightdress, ended before knees, exposing tanned legs. The fabric accentuated slightly rounded belly. Her black as tar eyes gave Eli a piercing, making that she felt uneasy.


“Don’t stay there!” mayor said sharply to his wife. “Give us something to eat and drink!”


“Thank you Mr.Kopfbyn “said Eli, slowly moved her eyes again on the man. “… but I don’t want to take up too much of your time.”


Mayor wrinkled his eyebrows and turned to his wife, giving her a sign that she wasn’t needed there anymore. “Come here!” said Gouda, reaching her free hand to the sitting on the bed boy. The boy, obediently jumped down and run to the mother, giving her his small hand.


When they were alone mayor turned to Eli.


 “What’s the matter?”


“It’s about one of my student.”


“More precisely?”


“Mr. Kopfbyn, you know whom I am talking about.”


“Not really.” The man shaken his head.


“Noel Leaflin, is that name tell you something?”


“Grandson of old, Hank. What’s with him?”


“Probably, he will die this night.”



Mayor said nothing. He pursed his lips in thin line.


“He stole wood.” he said after a while.


“He was just a child.”


“It’s better, if he as a child felt taste of lash. My father always said that a belt is the best teacher.“


“It’s wrong! That’s a bad method! The good teacher reprimanded, but always give a second chance. H-he didn’t receive a second chance.” She froze, trying to take a breath. She nervously looked around, trying to stop her tears. “He did it for his grandpa.” She said with trembled voice.


Mayor looked at her carefully and then shrugged.


“I don’t care. The forest is held by private owners. That’s not my problem.”


Eli made a step back, shaking her head. Her lips shivered.


“N-no. No.“ she whispered. “Why are you so insensitive?”


Suddenly, her eyes concentrated on man’s chest. She saw there a beautiful embellished, bejeweled, gold medallion. The mayor’s face darkened. He cough the medallion, clenched his fingers around it and hid under his shirt.


“G-get out!” Get out from my house!” He yelled.


Eli quickly turned on her knee and left the house, strongly closed the door.

For sure, the world, where she lived, was full of injustice.

part 12 here