The Call

The phone rang. I eyed it warily, not trusting what was sure to come out the end of it. It rang again. I debated whether I wanted to pick it up. A third ring. What if it was an important call. But what are the odds of that? Fourth ring. Maybe I’ll just check the caller ID and find out if they’re worth talking to. Ring five. Hell, maybe I should pick it up just so it will stop ringing. But the machine will get it soon. Ring six. And it goes to machine…
“This is Dan. Actually, this is Dan’s answering machine, acting as Dan’s proxy. If you leave a message for Dan, I could be convinced to relay it to him. If you leave your credit card number, I can guarantee your call will be returned. But if you’re feeling cheap, I’m sure Dan will understand.â€?
“Dan, this is your brother.” He sighed. “Fine. Maybe you’re actually not home. I guess it’s not really important anyway.â€?
It was important enough for him to call. He knew damn well I was there. He also knew that he could get me if he could rouse my curiosity.

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