The Sins of His Grandmother

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Chapter 3

Though stress had added an extra 20 years to Ms. Sillow’s elderly features, one would assume without a second guess that she naturally should look the way she did being that she was 106 years old. Her thin white strands of hair were always in disarray; her bent and twisted frame and joints symbolized her lost battle versus arthritis; her silver eyes, both outlined with crow’s feet, were dim and glossy; and her skin sagged. However, for a woman who had lived for over a century and who appeared as fragile as untempered glass, her strength was inexplicable. Maybe she was possessed; or maybe her years of fighting off an abusive husband afforded her the strength she retained at an age when most others would certainly be incapacitated. Whatever the reason was behind her potency, she was able to perform most of the physical tasks that many a Good Samaritan would have jumped to help her with.

On one particularly bitter cold winter morning, she stood statuesque in front of her kitchen sink, staring out of the window just above it, moving only to raise a glass of water poured from the slow-streaming tap to her lips. Strangely, she was so wrapped up in deep cogitation that she didn’t pay a second thought to the brownish-tinged, raw-flavored water filled with floating particles she had been sipping on for the past eight minutes or so. But what could be weighing so heavily on a person’s mind that would cause them to overlook the fact that their water lines had been infiltrated by septic waste? Clearly, Ms. Sillow was a deeply disturbed individual. Her immune system worked twice as hard as the average person’s, but it was quite competent: the only time that she had ever been inside of a hospital was on the day of her birth - an instance she obviously had no control over.

What joy it had brought to Graham and Bronze Toffers’ lives to hear the doctor say that all was well with their newborn daughter Amanda upon her arrival into this world at New York City’s Lincoln Medical Center. On the contrary, what great sorrow it placed in their hearts to witness her mental state begin to ebb throughout her adolescence once she started seeing a man who claimed to love her. The warning signs of a disastrous union were flashing right in front of her face from the get-go, but she chose to ignore them. Her love for him had blinded her. As her mother lay on her dying bed, she warned her daughter with utmost sternness to get out of the portended tumultuous relationship. But even her mother’s last wish wasn’t enough to get her to change her stubborn mind. The fact that her parents didn’t believe in her decision-making abilities had created a deep fissure between her and them; and just one day after her mother’s death - which was in part due to the stress brought on by Amanda - her father would fall victim to the diabolical schemes being bred in the pits of his daughter’s deluded mind. The verbal threats that she had always directed towards him during their occasional arguments had come to fruition. Frail and withered, he was helplessly unable to defend himself against the frequent barrage of slaps and punches she would subject him to. His survival depended on one disheartening decision: he had to ask her to leave his home. At his age, she was supposed to be tending to his every need; not abusing him. As much as he didn’t want to lose his only child, she had left him no choice. So, late one night when her internal voices gave her their customary list of mischievous tasks to carry out and she began her assault on him while he was resting, he put his plan into motion. “Get out! Get out now, you little witch!” he hollered. Although he was being sadistically beaten, he felt his greatest pain the moment he blurted out those regrettable words to his daughter. Sadly, getting vocal turned out to be more of a liability than a help to his situation, with the brazen demand only further infuriating the uncontrollable teenager. Taken aback by his unanticipated courage, his daughter picked up his heavy oak wood walking cane that was situated beside his bed and mercilessly drove it into his cranium, leaving him lying unconscious with a noticeably-visible indentation in his forehead in the wake of her swing. “That’ll teach you how to talk to me,” she said to her father’s unperceiving body. Having no other family members in Yarmouth or even a neighbor to turn to, the nonagenarian had no choice but to endure his sole caretaker’s mistreatment. Then, out of the blue, it all stopped one day - for he would mysteriously disappear.

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