The Tea Party

Wren nibbled the corner of a nail, watching with excited eyes glowing behind her smoked spectacles. She was exceptionally fond of the woman currently setting a table for two and was already envisioning her as a perfect mommy-construct.

While Miss Fitzpatrick turned back to the kitchen to collect the finger sandwiches, Wren quickly dropped cyanide into one of the cups. Her hand hovered over the second, wanting desperately to ensure a kill this time. After all, this was the fourth high tea the young lady had invited her to, and each time the sweet creature managed to choose the untainted cup, remaining quite alive, while Wren was left to drink the poisoned tea without comment. While it didn’t kill the reanimated child, it did burn her throat and give her terrible headaches and cramps.

It had become a weekly routine for her now, 3:00pm visit Miss Fitzpatrick for tea, 3:05pm, drop the cyanide in one of the two blue willow cups. 3:09pm,hide signs of disappointment as her hostess sips unpoisoned tea. 3:20, help clear the table while hiding signs of the painful poisoning and finally. 3:30, stagger home in time for her regular serum injection.

Wren had learned after the first try to schedule the meetings with Miss Fitzpatrick on days when she was due for another dose of the serum which would repair her cells and stop the pain of the poisoning. It had been a long twenty-four hours for her after the first time.

“You make very good sandwiches, Miss Fitzpatrick.” Wren beamed as she watched the kind woman take the poisoned cup. “I bet you’ll make the very best kind of mother.” Her hostess laughed “I have some time before that happens, Wren. I dare say a husband would be in order first. But when I do, I hope I have a daughter just like you.. right down to your sweet little freckles.”

Wren stood and moved around the table as the woman raised the cup to her lips and swallowed. She threw her arms around the surprised woman’s slender waist as the cup went clattering to the floor. “I love you Miss Fitzpatrick.”

Miss Fitzpatrick’s arms came down around the girl’s shoulders, but it was not in a fond, maternal embrace, or even the gentle comfort of an adult confronted with an emotional child. No, this motion was the desperate clutch of a quickly dying woman.

Miss Fitzpatrick slid to her knees, her horrified eyes the size of silver dollars as little Wren babbled her affection “Oh you’re going to be the best mommy and I’ll be such a good girl, I promise. And we can have tea every day and I’ll help you clean the dishes and you can teach me how to cook and you can brush my hair every night before bed, and I’ll hold your yarn while you knit..” she stopped, recognizing the pain in the woman’s face. Wren’s brow wrinkled as the woman gasped painfully “Oh Miss Fitzpatrick, it will be alright. It will only hurt for a little bit and then I’ll reanimate you and we’ll be together forever.”

Wren shifted uneasily at the expression on her beloved tea partner’s face. The hands on her shoulders became claws as the woman slid to the ground. “Please don’t be mad. I’ll make you better and you can be my mommy.” She received no response beyond a rasping death rattle.

In the stillness following, Wren stroked the warm corpse's fair hair and kissed her soft cheek. She propped the body back against the chair and sat across it's thighs, moving it's limp arms back around her shoulders, though only one stayed in place. She rocked gently, humming a lullaby, and kissed the dead woman one last time with a whispered "I love you mommy," and hugged her tight.

"Now," she said as she rose, pushing the chairs and small table off the Persian rug with which she would bundle the corpse for transport in, "time for work."

1 comments:

Rhianon Jameson March 26, 2010 at 11:52 AM  

An older girl would have simply put the poison in both cups, leaving nothing to chance. But youth must discover such for themselves.

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I have a mechanical heart and green reanimation serun for blood. I have glowing eyes that look like The Scientist's, but they're not his, they just look the same. I don't like swimming on account of I think my pilot light might go out.