She’s probably dead in there, James thought, as he trudged down to Mrs. Pater’s house.
He’d finished her driveway and porch when the front door opened slightly.
A box wrapped in colorful paper emerged from behind the door. Bony fingers held it.
“For you,” said a weak voice inside.
James reached out and took the box.
“Thank you,” he said.
“Merry Christmas,” said the disembodied voice.
I hope she’s okay, James thought, as he carried his gift home.