When your house fills with flame, smoke, and heat beyond measure strange things happen. Things melt that you wouldn't expect. Other items become unrecognizable. Some items, however, even when they are no longer there, leave their mark.
Our bathroom, the day of the fire, had several items on the counter. It was messy. A hairspray bottle, the hair dryer, my comb, a few other odds and ends had not been put away. It was a Friday and I just left them sitting there that morning. Turns out, they sat there even after I went to bed that night.
The next morning, as Shawn and I walked through the house I had a compulsive moment. I grabbed a garbage bag from my neighbor's house and cleared off the counter in the bathroom. I think I was still in disbelief and at the same time thinking, I don't want all these people to see my messy counter.
Afterward, I just stared at the outlines. Each item telling me where it once was. Each item reminding me this was real. I was most amazed at the outline of the comb. It almost looked like it was still there. Like nothing happened. However, trying to grab it I was hit with the harsh reality that the comb was a ghost and not my comb.
We went to the house today. It is full of ghosts of what once was. So quiet. So cold. So sad.