When the New Year arrived the annual New Year’s bash took place on Grimace Street.
So often it was about leaving the past behind and moving on with the new.
Alice Hopkins had had a poor year. She was getting old and her age was catching up with her.
“Its me legs,” she say to anyone bothered to listen, “they don’t hold me like they used to. Got to sit down more often than I want to and things just don’t get done.”
She looked around her and anyone who had known Alice over the years knew she was a great gardener and her yard was always a picture of care and health. Today it was overgrown and her scrubs were in need a good pruning and now cascaded over the front fence and across her front path.
Miss Marble the street’s resident witch knew enough these days not to interfere too much in the ways of nature. She had great affection for Alice, many was the hour the two had sat together of an evening mulling over the ways of the world and the health of the street.
There came a time, Miss Marble knew, when death visited and you had to allow it to do what it did best, collect the soul and leave the body behind for the living to grieve.
Miss Marble knew Alice’s days were numbered and even though she was generous in giving Alice some potions to help her sleep and to act against any pain she knew well enough not to stop nature having its way.
So this New Year, Miss Marble met with her neighbours and brought in the New Year. Some made resolutions, some didn’t and most had more to drink than they should have.
Alice she noted sat to the side and watched the festivities. Miss Marble sat with her as the clock struck the start of the New Year and held her hand.
The two women didn’t need to say much, they both knew this would be Alice’s last New Year and Alice was accepting of that.
As the neighbours danced around in celebration, Alice placed a hand over Miss Marble’s and said, “ Thanks dear friend, you’ve been good to me.”
“It’s what friends do,” replied Miss Marble, wishing her friend well.