Oceanside Property

After she died, and I finally had my millions, I planned on burning my scrubs. The old broad, who only watched Wheel of Fortune all day, treated me like trash. No one could stand her. And people wondered why she never married or had kids? The only reason I sacrificed my precious time was for her hefty inheritance.

“Ms. Shuemauker, can I get you some more water?” I asked from our matching recliners.

She was dying of lung cancer. She had an oxygen tank and a lit cigarette constantly hanging from her lips. One wrong twitch of the Pall Mall and we’d be blown to bits.

She held out her empty glass. “It’s about time, you twit,” she said in her froggy smoker’s voice. I’d rather listen to nails on a chalkboard.

The colors of sickly mustard, repugnant brown, and olive covered every inch of the kitchen. I filled the ambered colored glass with warm water. I left the ice cubes out. Her medicine bottles sat on the counter: Remeron, Glumetza, Digoxin to name a few, a practical pharmacy. What if I just mashed them all together? I tipped the bottles into my hand, emptying them. Was she ever going to die? Did I have to take this into my own hands?

All I thought about at night, in my bed down the hall from her, was how I would spend the money. Plane tickets to Miami, vanilla vodka martinis poolside. I would buy a high-rise condo on South Beach and watch the sunset from my bedroom overlooking the Atlantic. A maid would make me pancakes with hand-whipped cream. I’d take Spanish classes and learn about the rich Cuban culture. I’d hop from tapas bar to tapas bar.

“Amelia!”

That damn voice. It would soon be silenced.

No more cleaning the bedsheets when she wet herself, no more watering down the food so she could chew better (I wish she’d choke), no more hearing her damn bell in the middle of the night.

I handed her the water with a professional smile. I watched as the water touched her shriveled lips. She swallowed. I sat back down, squeaking the chair as I waited. There was silence from her end.

Had she died already?

But then, “You’re so stupid you don’t even know how to make a proper glass of water.”

I could almost feel the ocean breeze on my face.

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