Swamped – 6 (Final chapter)

Swamped extra

… The End for the Hanky family is near my friends. It will therefor be a longer chapter, and I will not waste too many words on this intro screen. Although this is the final chapter, the Hanky’s will live on forever in my game…

Thank you Maris, (Haagje)… dear vriendin… Your creations with such finesse, made it possible for them to submerge from the swamps of Twinbrook and out into the wide world. Thank you readers and commentators! It’s because of YOU, telling this story became a feast! I take my hat off (if I had one) and bow…Kiss, kiss…


Ma knew she was fighting the invincible enemy. The warning signs had been screaming GET OUT for too long now. There was nothing she could do. The gnome-in-the-box. She had to get the gnome-in-the-box. The whispering voices in Teds room told her to get that stupid gnome-in-the-box.

The house roared. The ghosts moaned. Their best friend, Ted, had left them all by themselves without ever looking back. Thats no way to treat friends! They would teach him a lesson. And because Ted was not at home, Ma was to pay the price. The house was sinking. Not only the swamp, but all the heavy stored emotions of the ghosts in Ted’s room were sucking at its foundation. It was going under.

Ma grabbed the gnome-in-the-box, and made her way downstairs. Go outside! Save yourself Ma! The ghosts in the room were screaming. Ma didnt want to hear them, but at the same time she felt compassion. She had to save them too!

She made her way outside. The water was thigh high and rising. I, of course, was not able to talk to Ma. I am just a statue. But I looked at her intensely showing her a way out… or in, its how you look at it.

That was the last I would see of Ma. From my point of view anyway, which is fixed as you know. I havent seen her since.
The darkest hour is just before the dawn
. The sinking came to a halt. Gurgling sounds were heard throughout the night and into early morning. The earth would rumble for weeks to come.

The sun had risen again and nothing reminded of the tragedy that took place at the Hanky place, outside of its golden gates. Neither Angie nor Ted knew what had happened. They were too absorbed in what was going on in their own lives. Don
t get me wrong! It was a good thing for them. Their Ma had always told them to get out, and get a life of their own. Now they had, and it didnt occur to them their ma could be in any kind of trouble.

Didi was feeding two extra mouths now, and other than giving her beau Ted a complete make over by taking him downtown to the Hugo Boss store, everything went mostly the same as every day. It was time for the next step she thought. Didi had plans for her future. Children and a husband, not necessarily in that order. Ted would do just fine!

Ted, I have a question to ask you.
Huh? What was that my sweet pea? Nothing too difficult I hope? I didnt go to some fancy University like our professor did.

Silly man, I want to ask you something important. I was thinking. Maybe it is too soon, but my biological clock is ticking. I feel like you would make beautiful babies Ted. Other than that I think you are a sweet man, underneath it all.

– “Will you marry me?
Ted squealed like a little girl. Didi Ms. Perfect Lutz liked this about Ted. The diamond in the rough she was going to polish to perfection

Angie had similar plans with Khaled. Angie had an extra hurdle to take: Khaled was from Abu Ebay, and he had to go back one of these days. The question was: was she going to let him go there all by himself? Was she willing to leave everything she knew behind?

All of her savings went into that ring. Not that she had a hard time getting whatever she wanted, but this ring she actually BOUGHT. All of this happened at the Frederick Fahrsythe Estate without Ma being present. These kids had completely forgotten about their mother.
For 30+ years their Ma had been on their backs. It was to no surprise they took the liberty to make the decisions about their future without her being around, telling them what and what not to do. After all, Ma could be on her own for a couple of weeks
,  now couldnt she?

They were not all that bad. Both Ted and Angie called Ma on several occasions but to no prevail. There was a constant busy signal. Oh well, Ma was also still busy working. She was out a lot. They were not really worried! Not yet. Ted had gone over to the house once. He said she was not in. But that was over a week ago. Where could Ma have gone? Why didnt she pick up her phone? Angie was to travel to Abu Ebay with Khaled in the morning. She would call Ma when she got there.

Khaleds house in Abu Ebay was not a palace. But it was set in a lush and green Oasis of peace. Everyday life took over and the worrying faded into the background of Angies thoughts. First shed call her Ma every day, then every Week, then every Month! No answer! Maybe she had lost her cell phone??? Oh God YES!!! That was it! She had no phone!….. But why did Ma not come looking for them?

*Frogs croaking, crickets chirping , a dog barking in the distance*

…OK, OK..., hum hum Friends, not for all the tea in China I will leave you here all by yourselves. Stop the moaning. I saved you didnt I? How sharper than a serpent’s tooth it is to have thankless children!…hum…hum…

Ma is here to look after youhum…hum… Now that I dont have anyone left in this world. My kids are gone. They flew away, and forgot about me. But HEY! … thats OK, I told them so. I told them to get a life and be gone. Hum…hum.

..Psssst... Ma, come with me! Enough with the winding-me-up routine! Let me show you something….

What is it about that door my good friend?
Its your ticket to freedom Ma.
My life as I knew it is over.
 – It ain’t over till the fat lady sings, Ma.

Ma opened the door and closed it behind her. There was yet another door. It was some kind of an air lock. She had to surface. She needed air.

Here goes nothing!
With that thought on her mind she went through the other door.

More water. It was all around her…

Khaled, Angies loving husband, did everything he could to make Angie feel comfortable at his humble home in Abu Ebay. It was his house and although Angie had all the freedom to make it her home too, he felt she was getting more miserable by the day.

For a short while he thought it had everything to do with Angies pregnancy. Her mood swings and constant moping and nagging were worrying Khaled. Angie and he were expecting their first babies. Yes, they were going to have twins.

Not having her brother or her mother around to tease and to lecture was eating at her. Khaled now worried about his wifes sanity.
She tried her best to fit in the every Abu Ebay way of life, but she couldn
t get used to it. Her children would not have the joy of having a family. A grandmother, who was not there anymore. An uncle and an auntie. Even cousins to play with one of these days. Ted, her little brother. Yes, Angie was going insane. She missed Ted dearly.

Khaled, sweetheart…”
Yes my dearest one?
– “Can we go home?

What else could Khaled do?

The twins, Davida and Amar were born back in Twinbrook. Khaled got his position teaching at Bridgeport University, and all went fine for a couple of years.

Ted and Didi had a little baby girl. Ted called her Baby, and that would be her name from then on. Alicia Genevieve Theodora was too long a name to call her anyways.

Like a magnet the old Hanky house pulled at Angie. After she had dropped off the twins at school she had to go by the house. Ted and a couple of construction workers had been doing some earth moving and drilling. No one was here today. She had never dared to go back sooner. Not after they heard what had happened.

They had lost Ma in that terrible accident. A tragedy. Not even today they knew what had happened exactly. Ma had always been a good swimmer. The water must have come at night while she had been asleep, most probably… Caught her by surprise. There could not have been another way.


Angie looked around. She had a hard time fighting back her tears. Nothing was left. Everything sank with the house. Not a single piece of furniture, not even the smallest…

…Something caught her eye

It was her Mas precious gnome-in-the-box. The one that Ted always kept in his room. It never went nowhere else. How could it be here?
Angie took the little box, and the gnome inside of it with her.


You are the only reminder I will ever have of my mom… you little bearded, mesmerizing fellow!

Need the box! I know I left it there. I definitely need the box. Yes, I can hear it. It is far away though. Where did it go? Need the box. Hang on my friend. I am coming for you. Dont you worry, Ma will rescue you!

– “Hi Didi?… Yes. Could you bring Ted over tonight? Yes, hahaha, of course you are invited too! You have butler babysitting Baby? Good! No, well, I found something I want to show Ted. OK! Yes! See you tonight then!

– “So is that what I think it is?”
– “Can you BELIEVE it Ted? Nothing left there. Just the box. How is it possible? Not a single piece of furniture left
! Just the Box.”

– “Dont look at me Ted! LOOK at MAs BOX!

It will be moms memorial box from now on. Here we can remember her by. Isnt it a wonderful coincidence I found it?”

– “OK guys, come and eat first. Aunt Didi made Dim Sum. It is our favorite remember?
Amar, what is it honey?”
– “Is that really grandma in that box momma?”
– “No, sweetie
. Its just something we can remember her by. Its a memorial.


– “Are you expecting any more people Angie?”
Amar will you get that sweetie?”


– “Yes, we have a gnome-in-a-box. Mom says its a memorial.”
..MOM!!! Theres a lady at the door for you!


Got an empty nest? Try not to grieve. Really, it was the intention all along.
Don’t feel sad… Instead, start living again!


About margotoele

Geboren in Nederland en met een spanjaard getrouwd. Sinds 1971 wonende in Las Palmas op de Kanarische Eilanden. Ik ben beroeps gids en mijn hobby is verhaaltjes te schrijven, die op het spel De Sims zijn geïnspireerd. Nací en Holanda y me casé con un español. Desde 1971 vivimos en Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Soy guía profesional y mi gran hobby es escribir historietas inspiradas en el juego de Los Sims.
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