Strange Renters

One year ago today, I divorced my narcissistic asshole of a husband.

Now, I make ends meet working three jobs to raise my two kids, and yet that’s still not enough! So, I decided to rent out a spare bedroom in our small flat. In the span of a week, I’ve gotten three calls.


“Hello! Are you Ms. James? The one renting a spare room?”

The voice on the line was high pitched, as if a child was speaking on the other end.

“If you are, does the room have a night light? I’m scared of the dark, and monsters will get me if there’s no night light.”

“Excuse me? How old are you?”

“Uhm, I’m six.”

I hang up.

The next caller, luckily, was someone who wasn’t a child, but a man in his mid-twenties.


“Hello! My name is Rufus Leakin, and I would like to rent out your spare room through days July 11th through July 15th.”

“Okay then!” I take out a pen and write down those days on my calendar. “Since it costs $75 a night, your total will be $300.”

“And how much will that be in cheese currency?”

“Cheese what?”

“I can only pay you with cheese, and I don’t know how many slices of cheese would equal $300.”

I hang up, letting out a groan of irritation. When will someone normal offer to rent?

My last caller was a young woman and her husband wanting to share the room for two weeks.

“You’ll be able to pay with regular currency right?” I asked, just to make sure.

“Yes, we will,” The wife replied.

“With American dollar bills?” I press on.

“Yep,” The husband reassured.

“Okay then, I’ll see you when I see you!”

I hang up the phone and breathe a sigh of relief. I’ll finally be able to afford a new couch and new clothes for my kids.

When the day arrives, I make sure the house is spotless. No toys on the floor, no dishes left unclean, and not a single speck of dust can be seen. I don’t have to worry about making sure the kids behave, because that will be their father’s problem for a while.

As soon as the doorbell rings, I’m giddy a with excitement. I practically skip to the door.

But as soon as I look through the peephole, the excitement turns into disappointment. The husband and wife in question are costumed in clown outfits and makeup. The wife has colorful balloons in one hand and a horn in the other. The husband carries the luggage.

I fastened the locks on my door and pretend I’m not home.

Instead of the buying things for the apartment and the kids, I should probably worry about moving.

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