Domestics

Fingers drummed on the dining room table. The drummer, Sophie, rolled her eyes as she drummed, she muttered something under her breath, drumming some more. She seemed to be having a conversation in her head. She sighed and walked to the kitchen. She pressed her palms against the counter as she leaned forward resting her forehead on the cabinet.

“Habari ya asubuhi Sophie!” a female voice greeted.

“Mzuri Mama John!’ Sophie spat out as she stood upright and rolled her eyes some more. She headed straight to the sink and began to wash the two cups that were in it, head faced downward, still muttering under her breath.

“Aunty chai iko tayari.” Sophie informed her boss as she turned on the tap to rinse the cups.

‘Sawa!” Mama John said casually. “Tutakunywa baadaye!” it was a public holiday; there wasn’t much of a hurry to have breakfast at 6.30am. Sophie feigned a smile and walked to the dining room table; she sat at it and stared at the tea flask on the centre of the table. She looked around the room then at the flask again. Then she looked down and shook her head.

“Aunty! Aunty!” John was awake and disrupted Sophie’s thought.

“Are you hungry John?” John shook his head to say no.

“Can we play?”

“What do you want to play? It is really early, how about you go back to bed and we can play much later?”she suggested kindly.

John shrugged his shoulders and ran up the stairs. Sophie sighed in relief. She went to her guest house. What had been her home for 4 years; she was so exhausted with her life. It was predictable, but it was the only place where she was treated as part of the family, was paid handsomely and had health insurance and an investment portfolio. It was every domestic worker’s fantasy.

But something had really put her off it lately. As she opened the door to the guest room, the reason for her premeditated departure was nestled on her bed. There was John’s half brother who was undergoing puberty.

“Aki please! Just once! I promise I will not come back.” Jack pleaded.

Sophie backed out the door and slammed it behind her. She did not say a word. Her face was forlorn and at the same time wincing in pain. Jack had been at her door for weeks begging for some ‘experience’. Sophie chose to keep it to herself; she thought it was a trap to get her fired. Jack had always had it in for her since the day she walked in through the door.

Sophie sat at the dinner table and stared in to nothingness. After 10 minutes, she began to stare at the flask once again, her lips moving again, the mutters now getting louder and more coherent. John came down the stairs and found Sophie bleeding on the table, tea pouring all over the dinner table and the carpet.

“Mama! Baba! Heeeeeeeeeellllllllpppp!”

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