It's 4 a.m. I'm sleeping, as I tend to do at such an hour. Suddenly, a pounding at the front door shocks me out of my slumber. And it doesn't stop.
I try to ignore it. I live next to a bar, across the street from an under-construction cocktail lounge, and around the corner from The Beer Store. My neighborhood caters to fun characters, most of whom I'm not interested in hanging out with once I'm in pajamas. I hear low voices muttering outside. I assume it's a team of pizza-delivery boys wondering why no one wants their pizza. Or friends of Boy Behind the Wall who are too drunk to remember that he lives at the back of the house.
The knocking continues.
I eventually stumble into my living room in the dark. I don't want to turn on the lights and acknowledge my post-midnight existence. Flashing lights dance through the blinds. I peak out the window. A fire truck sits in front of my house.
That's when I notice that I have a headache. Not just a sleep-disturbance-induced one, either. And the place smells funny. Like the morning after a campfire. Stale and smokey.
I open the front door, gorgeous in my oversized shapeless shirt and too-short flannel pants. Three firemen stare at me, surprised that someone does, in fact, live here. I have to shout something awkward in their direction before anyone talks to me.
"Someone burnt something downstairs."
Thanks for the clarification, I think loudly before shuffling back to bed, now completely distracted by the stench permeating everywhere.
Not a single alarm went off in my building. This should have disturbed me. For almost twenty minutes, I ignored emergency services at my door. This also should have disturbed me. Instead, I was annoyed that someone attempted a culinary experiment at an hour when delivery would have been far more appropriate. And that the same late-night chef didn't bother to direct the firefighters to the scene of their crime. Only you can prevent Nadine-inconveniencing fires.