Icylyn Dumfries was a seventy-five years old, bundle of energy. Most of this energy was being expended verbally today.
“Jonathan! But where’s that boy?!” she asked. Her grandson was outside her range of sight, which was rather small, despite wearing glasses that were as thick as deep-sea diving goggles.
Jonathan was busy completing the chore she had given him only two minutes ago: to water the plants before they were packed into the moving truck by those “strange men”. She called the movers strange, because their trousers were too tight, their hairs were combed like hers, and they were wearing earrings. She might be on the verge of senility but she still remembered that only girls looked and dressed liked that; “strange… very strange to see men looking like that.” Jonathan quickly finished his task and went back to her side for his next assignment.
“I want you to bring me my pillow,” she said to him.
Jonathan’s wiry frame was perpetually cloaked in a formal shirt and short trousers. His look was completed by dark socks pulled all the way up to his knees. His shoes were so shine that a woman, who was so inclined, could check her make up using them as a mirror. This was the look his grandmother demanded.
“Granny, I don’t know if I can get to that now,” he said.
“What do you mean by that?” she asked, with her eyes seeming unnaturally wide beneath her glasses.
He took a step backward and replied, “Well, Granny, they have already packed them into the truck.”
“Why did they do that?” she asked, shaking her head in bewilderment.
“Well, granny, you told them to,” he replied.
After a little period of silence, she leaned back in her rocking chair and said, “Well I need my pillow.” She kept staring at him, as if daring him to say another word, or to do nothing about her situation. He knew the look.
Jonathan walked slowly outside to the truck and stood to the rear looking inside. He could not see the pillow but he saw the bag that he thought contained it. It was almost buried beneath other items. He saw a man standing beside the truck with a clipboard and said, “Granny wants her pillow.”
“Where is it?” the man asked.
Jonathan responded with a pointing gesture, aimed at the farthest part in the truck. The man with the clipboard extended his neck trying to identify the pillow, but he could not.
“Sorry, shi hav to wait till wi reach the other house,” the man said, returning to his work on the clipboard.
Jonathan smiled and shook his head, “If Granny wants her pillow sir, Granny gets her pillow,” and with that he dashed into the truck rummaging through layers of items.
The man started shouting and gesticulating like there was no tomorrow. He climbed after the boy but could not fit into the spaces through which Jonathan disappeared. The man resigned himself to ranting, announcing his dislike of imps like Jonathan.
The men continued loading while Jonathan was inside and after a lengthy while he emerged from the truck holding his Granny’s beloved pillow. When he returned to his grandmother’s side, she glowed with joy, promising him a nice bowl of porridge as his reward. Despite her overbearing presence, Jonathan liked pleasing his grandmother, because for him, she had been a saving grace.
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