The calla lily groaned, and stretched in her pot as the water coursed through her arms. It had been a long week. There was no water. When the woman left in the daytime, the windows remained closed. The lily and all the other plants would just sit around with their tongues out until she got home and noticed they had turned grey. Today, she had time to care for them. The fresh air swirled across their leaves and coupled with the sun, nourished them greatly. She sang them little songs that made them smile. Her voice was pink with white clouds floating on the top.
The woman flitted about the house with much grace, unpacking things in the kitchen, slamming cabinets and scraping pots. One was full of sour rice grains. As she scraped the sides of the pot with a flat, white spoon, the rice that was now a putrid porridge began to giggle and strived to break free from the middle of the shiny pot. Thankfully, the woman was fast with her hands, and none of it hit the floor, only fell straight into a plastic bag and made a soft crinkling sound. She was chatting loudly with some other women on the phone. A baby could be heard cooing and making demands of its mother. The day was rather typical and common. Still.Clear. The woman always busied herself when she was alone in the apartment. Her nervousness made it impossible for her to sit in the place and not do something. Every speck of food or lint had to be taken care of. There could be no dirty dishes, and most things that caught her eye could benefit from improvement. The past had a rope tied around her left ankle, and on some days, a wicked voice whispered to her that she was just like her mother. It made the woman laugh though, for this was not true. Only a way for the darkness to try and corrode her mind. The small place she had lived in with her siblings was one of peace and love. The only bad thing in it was him. Because of this, she rarely invited suitors to her place. Their auras need not sully up the space and make it hard for her boy to breathe. He was what mattered to the woman. So she cleaned, and she cleaned, keeping things clear for him so his little mind could be at ease.
After the dishes were washed, and the smattering of things she went out and purchased were in their right places, she reclined on her settee, and found a show to watch. Everything was so depressing. News of another shooting plastered the screen no matter what channel she chose. What were we all going to do? Why were people like this? Why isn’t anyone doing anything to stop it? The world was becoming stranger and stranger to the woman, which is exactly why when she wasn’t with the boy, she mostly hunkered down, and thought deep, swirling thoughts that sometimes put her to sleep. Today, she didn’t feel tired, although she had painted the boy’s room, and went from one market to the next looking for the right mixture of things to decorate her home with.
No, not today.
She settled on a show she watched almost every evening at bedtime, and picked up her phone to see who she might want to call halfway across the world. As she mindlessly went through the list of people in her phone, she began to feel a bit warm, so she kicked the blankets off her legs and changed positions. There was an air conditioning system in her home, but the idea of artificial air bothered her, so she didn’t use it unless totally necessary. She rolled her eyes and sighed, resentful that soon the air conditioning system would be making a loud droning noise that would eclipse that of the plants playing pat-a-cake with each other and splashing their toes in the water at the bottom of the flower pot. The hot wheels cars quietly racing each other in the next room would be drowned out. Ah well. The woman
reached under her pillow for the blockish remote control, and pressed the button at the top. The hard hum started up, and she turned her eyes to the screen, ignoring the brightness invading the room, and creep-
ing towards the front door. As she listened to the show, she heard footsteps. “Must be the neighbor and his girlfriend again.”
When she heard the knock on the door, she just looked at it. No one ever came to her door unannounced. There hadn’t been any recent Amazon orders. No suitors would be interested in sending flowers. Who could this be? Her eyes were trained on the door, and maybe it was because she was nervous, she didn’t know, but the apartment didn’t seem to be cooling down. Another set of knocks. She got up from the couch and went to the door. Looking out the window wasn’t the best idea. Last time, the woman looked out the window after hearing a knock, she was met by her drunk neighbor. He was swaying like a reed, apparently drunk, and seeking sanctuary. The window was a bad idea right now, especially considering the light outside.
The woman unlocked the top lock, puzzled by its warmth. Her brown became an empty chip bag. She hastily turned the knob.
And there she was.
“Ummmm, hello?” The woman was stunned, but very curious. It isn’t every day that the sun comes to your front door.
“God wants you.”
“Yeah. He told me to come get you.”
“Any idea why?”
“No. I won’t spend too much time trying to convince you. Let’s go.”
The woman was bewildered. Was this some kind of joke? It had to be real because she was just about melting, standing in her doorway talking to this sun-person. Her eyelashes flipped backwards. It was excruciatingly hot.
“Why does it look like you’re wearing a costume?”
“Do you want to die? If I came down here in my natural form, you would be a puddle on the floor right now. So would everyone else in the vicinity. I had to cover myself. Besides, I don’t have to answer to you. You are keeping Him waiting.”
“Why would he send you and not one of the disciples? Or at least John the Baptist. Moses. Elijah. Noah. Anybody?”
The woman’s clothes began to stick to her.
She turned around, took at glance at her plants, and reached into the raffia basket next to the door for her sandals. The bottom lock clicked gently, and she followed the sun.