I am Chloe


A cloudy dawn broke over the small hamlet of Corran Ontario cascading a pale embrace over the earth, trees, roads and buildings. The sun fought the clouds but was imprisoned by them in a suspended and muted orange glow. From the small grey house with the red door a figure emerged timidly. It was a young woman with just below chin length straight brown hair and tortoise shell glasses. She wore light blue jeans with a black v-neck t-shirt, a lightweight black windbreaker and black and white sneakers. She looked both ways and then stepped back in the door keying in an alarm code to a keypad just inside. She slid back out again, stealthily, keys in hand, and locked the front door as the alarm did its series of countdown beeps. When it stopped beeping she pocketed the keys and set off, looking around again with wary wonder.

She was unfamiliar with her surroundings and started down the road and then froze up and halted as a blue delivery truck rattled by. Catching her breath, she began walking again, with a little head shake at her own jumpiness. The roads were slick as it had been thunder storming on and off and the mist of the rains still loomed in the air. It was warm and humid, too humid for her choice of attire. Beads of sweat formed at the edges of her hairline and she fanned her jacket a bit but kept it on. It still felt like it would rain more. This moment was just a break from it. She followed the path of the rattling truck and watched as it pulled up to a Chinese restaurant. A stack of boxes were unloaded from the back on a dolly and a young woman emerged to greet the driver in Chinese. They kept talking as the cart was wheeled into the building with the back door creaking loudly as it open and shut. The young woman felt herself jump a little at the first unexpected noise and then sighed in annoyance.

There was a service station ahead but she did an about face and walked back the other way down the road to the intersection she had just passed. Allenford, Owen Sound, Port Elgin were towns nearby listed on a sign. She looked in all directions cautiously and then crossed over toward a small stone chapel. A small smile crossed her face and then she suddenly swallowed hard and turned away from it, focusing instead on the red brick building across from it. It was some sort of restaurant or coffee shop but not yet open. She climbed the steps in front of it and cupped her hands around her eyes, peering into it. It was a cute little place with comfortable looking chairs. Craning her neck and leaning back to read the shop sign above she learned it was called Dancing Goats Tea House and Gift Shop.

A rumble of thunder in the distance sent a shiver through her, despite the warm air around her. A misty rain began again and she looked out over the landscape. Her own voice seemed almost unfamiliar to her but she quietly spoke into the wet mist in what sounded like a practiced sort of mantra.

“I am Chloe. I am Chloe Tremblay.”


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