The Roommate

Josh L
3 min readMar 14, 2022

Another short story from college

Photo by chris robert on Unsplash

Ms. Perry had just been told by her landlord that her rent was to double. She could barely afford the place now at the current price. She needed to convince her landlord that there was no way she could do this to her. She was guaranteeing her to live with the homeless.

“Ms. Perry, you must understand that times are tough right now. We all need more income. I truly apologize, but I have no choice.”

“Mrs. Benning, please, you are the one that needs to understand I have nowhere else to go. What am I to do?”

“Well, now that I think about it, my son needs a place to live. He just got kicked out after an incident at his old apartment. I’ll tell you what, if you agree to be roommates with him I will keep the rent the same price. Deal?”

That was on a Friday. On Monday, a man appeared on Ms. Perry’s doorstep with only two bags and nothing else. She invited the man and was told his name was Rob. Rob came into the house with his shoes on and threw his bags on the ground and sat down on the couch. He exclaimed how tired he was and asked for a glass of water with ice in it. Mrs. Perry was appalled.

“Um, Rob, could you please take off your shoes and put them by the door? Then, I can show you to your room and you can place your bags in there.”

“Nah, I feel comfortable right here. I could really use that water now, though.”

She did not know what to do. She went to the kitchen and grabbed a glass. She put in three ice cubes and filled it with water. She then brought it back to the couch where Rob now had his feet up on the coffee table, shoes still on.

“Here you go, Rob. After you drink, would you like to see your room?”

He took the drink without giving her a glance and grabbed the TV remote.

“You know what, can you just take them to the room for me? I’m awfully tired.”

She slowly bent over and grabbed one bag with each hand. They were lighter than she had expected. She quickly walked the few steps to his bedroom and placed the bags on the bed. She then sat down in the office chair and thought about what her next move was. She had limited options. Either accept the way Rob acts and just deal with it or force him to leave. If she forced him to leave, however, she knew she would be leaving not too long after that.

She went back to the living room and found her landlord and Rob sitting down together on the couch. They sat close together and appeared to be whispering something when Mrs. Perry came in.

“Mrs. Benning? I did not realize you were coming over this afternoon.”

“I did not know I was going to be here either. My son is telling me how awful you have been to him so early on in the move in.”

Baffled, Mrs. Perry explained the truth about the whole move in. From him ruining her clean living room by bringing his dirty shoes in to immediately giving her orders to fetch him water.

“Stop right there, Mrs. Benning. As you know, your lease has ended last week. Thus, we are on a month to month agreement here. I’ve decided that you have been so rude to my son that you need to leave immediately. Good luck in the future.”

Mrs. Benning did not know how to respond. She stood there with her mouth wide open. She knew there was no way around this. There was nothing she could say or do to convince her to let her say in the house. She didn’t even pack any stuff. She opened the front door and closed it behind her.