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  • Jackie Marx

Myrtle Armentrout (Short Story)

Updated: Jan 15

My job is hard on me emotionally and I am not a weak man. I have been to war and survived. I have been married to the same woman for thirty years. Trust me, I am not a weak man.

In a nutshell? I kick people out of their homes in Esther Falls, Nebraska. I know. It seems like that would be a very dull eight-hour day.

“How many people in a small town would get kicked out of their homes?” might be the question on the tip of your tongue.

Not that many, but each one is a heartbreak.

Take Myrtle Armentrout. Please.

All kidding aside, Myrtle lives at 244 Hampton Road in a hoarded house. I have been sent out many times to warn her. I am here, this time, to evict her.

I asked her to show me the deed to her home, just to make sure she owns it.

It’s around here somewhere,” she said and disappeared into the bowels of the hoard.

I can hear things crashing down, tchotchkes breaking. I hear Myrtle swearing up a storm.

I held my breath as long as possible but now, I am ready to vomit.

“Myrtle, how you doin’?”

“It’s around here somewhere,” she says again, from somewhere in the hoard.

I will vomit if I don’t leave soon.

“You keep looking. I’ll just be outside.”

I fight my way to the front door and plant myself on a broken slow cooker on the stoop while I wait for poor old Myrtle Armentrout to seal her doom unwittingly.

As I said, my job is hard on me emotionally and I am not a weak man.

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