Week 9: Bonbons

30 Jan

‘The nerve of you!’ Mrs Midwitcher spat, her little leather pouch rolling to the floor and spilling pink bonbons on the rug and under the sofa.  She made a dash for them but only managed to grab the very end of the pouch as the last sweets were pouring out of it.  ‘Drat! Now I’ll have to handpick all of them! Mind your step, you!’

Young Mrs Thirdwitcher wrinkled her nose and exited the room walking in a very dignified manner or like having a pole up her bum.

Mrs Firstwitcher rolled her eyes dramatically. She turned to Mrs Midwitcher. ‘Do you want me to help, Dinah?’

‘Oh, no. Don’t bother. I’ll do it tomorrow. It’s too dark and my Jake will be too drunk anyway to hear the crunches when he walks all over them and I’ll have to scrub them off the floor with my fingernails and peel them off the rug one strand at a time.’  That’s right, just ask. Don’t even think of actually lending a hand, lest it shrivels and falls off!, Mrs Midwitcher thought as she threw a fistful of bonbons out the window.

‘So, how’s it going with Darryl?’ she asked in a rather jovial tone.

‘Oh, don’t you get me started, Dinah! I’ll give him some piece of my mind one day, I will! Leaving for two whole weeks without telling us anything! And that idiot Madison didn’t even twitch when he heard the news! Shot in the leg while he was stealing a duck! Imagine the humiliation! The whole street made a song and danced about it the whole week! I couldn’t even go to the market without hearing some farfetched new gossip! Cried for three days, I tell you!’

Mrs Midwitcher smirked inwardly. That son of theirs was never any good.

‘I’ll teach him a lesson when he returns, I will! Whitewash the whole house, dust all the rooms and work the land! Unworthy scum destroying our lives, our health! He’ll see who Desdemona Firstwitcher is!’ the old woman ended her torrent of insults in a high pitched squeak.  She took a deep breath to calm down.  ‘Oh, my heart is throbbing like a rampant bull. Look where all this worrying got me…I’ll be on my deathbed before you know it…oh, my poor weak heart…’ she lamented, wiping a tear away with the corner of her handkerchief.

‘There, there, Desmy…it will be alright…you’ll see…’ Mrs Midwitcher airily patted her friend on the shoulder. Thank Lord I was against my Harriett’s marrying that good for nothing thief.

‘Dinah, what’s that noise upstairs?’ Mrs Firstwitcher suddenly asked alarmed, face lifted to the ceiling, forgetting for a second to wipe her hooked nose.

Mrs Midwitcher turned towards the other end of the room. The base of the staircase was in full view. In a split second, the two women were making a wild race towards it. They jumped three steps at a time, quite a record for their age and weight.  Breathing heavily, one of them banged the bedroom door open while the other was gasping and waving her arms around frantically.  The windows rattled at their pooled screams.

Mrs Thirdwitcher, otherwise known as Harriett, married happily with, how conveniently, no children, had one leg over the window sill, while a young, rather swarthy man on a ladder was holding her hand and helping her descend.  Harriett gave a small squeak and toppled over dragging the man with her, and they both fell on a stack of hay strategically moved all the way there from the field behind the house.  They recovered quickly and made a run for it across the yard and over the fence, Harriett with her skirt drawn up to her chest and the man limping, soon disappearing from view.

The two older women were looking out the window, faces still red with rage. Mrs Midwitcher grumbled something about inconsiderate children oblivious to their parents’ sacrifices, obviously made ‘for their own good’. Mrs Thirdwitcher seconded with a similar mumble. A few minutes latter they both flopped on the sofa, looking at each other with enmity out of the corner of an eye, silently cursing their wretched lives.

‘Got any more bonbons, Desmy?’

(something pretty incoherent written for a 400-word challenge on good old LiveJournal back in 2004 :)) )


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