Good Help Is Hard to Find

September 21, 2009

Old Mrs. Jean sat on the front porch of her big white house and surveyed her farm. It was a hot day, but a breeze blew down from the mountains, carrying the promise of rain to her aching joints. In the fields, her boys worked as they always did, mechanically and without pause.

“Andre!” she called into the house. She’d love a tall glass of guava juice, but she didn’t want to get up. “Andre!” she repeated. Where was that boy?

She had sent him out to gather herbs earlier, she remembered. Mrs. Jean sighed. “Abi!” she shouted. There was a shuffling sound, and soon Abi appeared in the doorway.

“Abi, get Maman a glass of guava juice,” she commanded. She heard him shuffle into the kitchen, then winced as a glass shattered.

“Stupid clumsy… Abi!” she shouted. “Leave that and come here.”

He obeyed, standing before her silently. Shards of glass stuck out of his dark gray feet. Mrs. Jean gazed at the sewn sockets that used to be his eyes.

“You zombie are good farmers,” she remarked. “But you are terrible maids.”

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