For a bit of background, our small group (6 couples) meets on Thursday nights. Currently it is hosted by Chuck and Lydia. We all start arriving at 7pm, and don’t usually leave until 11 or 11:30. Eleven out of twelve of our kids (who are all 5 years old and under) actually go to sleep at their house, then we wake them up to take them home, and they actually go back to sleep at home. It is quite miraculous. And it is unbelievably rich in real relationships, bible study, accountability, and friendships.
So last night, we arrive right at 7pm. Chuck and Lydia’s cars are there, but no one else’s. No surprise – we’re usually the first to arrive. We lug our baby and all of her gear up to the front door. I get there with my load first, and try the door. It’s open, so I let myself in. There are no immediate signs of life (which is weird since they have three kids), but the oven timer is going off.
I quickly go into the kitchen and smell a slightly burnt-chocolate smell. Odd. How long had the timer been going off?
I pull the cake out of the oven. It looks fine, but it has a bit of an overdone smell to it.
I call out, “hellllo??”
I walk into the living room.
By this time, Ali and Chris have made it in, and I tell him what I have found so far.
Chris heads into Chuck and Lydia’s bedroom. Nothing.
At this point, the evidence is starting to freak us out: Two cars at home, oven beeping, cake burning, front door unlocked, Lydia’s cell phone sitting on the table. . . what in the world?
After a few more minutes of pondering and looking around, Chris gives me Ali and tells me he is going upstairs alone to look for them. We are both having worst-case-scenario thoughts going through our head but neither one of us are saying them.
Chris searches the upstairs. Nothing.
I tell Chris to try Chuck’s cell phone. He dials the number, and we’re both cringing, waiting to hear it ring in the other room.
Relief washes over us when Chuck answers and says, “I bet you’re at my house!”
They were next door delivering Christmas presents.
So Chris told him that he would quit searching the house for their bodies.
Oh – and the cake was delicious. But Lydia had forgotten about it being in the oven. And I was appropriately lauded as cake savior.