Deveal Pelham’s house is the oldest, strangest house in a little town nobody goes too and that nobody has come from for many years.
If you were to come across Deavel’s house on a drive one evening, you might wonder if white house with the peeling paint and the yellowed lace curtains in some of the windows and torn blinds in the others was lived in. If you saw the rusted wind chimes hanging on the porch just left of the leaf filled wicker chair you’d guess it had been abandoned for a very long time.
But as you drove on by- you might slow down a little- then you would probably see that the mailbox was new and the house address was legible and the red flag was up and in the orange box just under the mailbox you would probably see that day’s newspaper.
And the feeling that you would get from these little images that would tell you the house is alive- that someone was actually living in it- would be the same feeling as finding a pulse in an embalmed corpse.
And as you drive away from the house you might notice that in two of the windows on the top floor were turning red, just the faintest shade of red
and you would know that glow was coming from the inside of the house.
Don’t worry if you felt like a fool, if days later that house was turning up in your dreams and maybe you started to notice other houses like it eventually the feeling and the dreams will pass.
It wasn’t like that for the people who lived In Cedar Valley.
At first the people who lived in Cedar Valley just took it for granted that every town had an odd duck swimming in it’s pond and it just happened that in their case that duck was Deveal.
Deveal would drive into town and buy groceries that he would carelessly toss into the back of his rusted truck and he would sometimes stop into the post office/drugstore for ‘No Pest Strips” that he would carefully place on his dashboard for the drive home and sometimes he would even buy a hamburger.
Which he did not eat.
Deveal would always say hello and in turn, even though they did not want to, his neighbors had to say hello back.
But the oddest thing about Deveal was his house.
It was only about two years older then the rest of the houses in town and it looked like most of the houses in town and it even had those fancy lace curtains that were in style and hanging from all of the houses in town.
But it always looked older, and it aged faster and the grass and trees all around his house turned brown and stayed that way.
And sometimes the windows on the top floor turned red, just the faintest shade of red and in those days, before the street lights went in and Cedar Valley got built up, you could see that faint red glow for miles.
Pretty soon Deveal’s house was mentioned by almost everyone in Cedar Valley at least once a day, everyone had something to say about it- it was used as a reference point when they gave driving directions, it came up when topics of conversations involved rot or decay or crazy people who made things out of human skin and hair.
One day, Skip Keyes said to his friend Alby Bench ” You know it seems like we never get away from Deveal’s house, it’s always here- right here in the middle of town. It’s like the damn thing is always watching us. It feels like we never get away from it. Why do you suppose that is?”
And before Alby could answer Deveal walked by and as he did Alby and Skip did what they always did in Cedar Valley when their Odd Duck swam by
they turned to say hello to Deveal.
And Deveal stopped and with the faintest of red glowing from his eyes he said hello back.