Being one of Mary’s Maids meant being able to tackle messy mansions, not demons. Sara’s only mission in life was to get through her eight-, nine-, sometimes ten-hour shifts and keep her own apartment clean while raising her two young children. When she came home on her fifth day of working a second job as a hotel housekeeper, Sara only wanted to pay her teenage babysitter and put her kids to bed before zoning out in front of the TV. Usually she walked in to find toys and questionably clean clothes scattered around the living room and her children in the midst of it, with her babysitter Lydia on the couch watching cheesy reality television. Teresa and Zachary were nowhere to be seen, though, and the TV itself had a hole the size of a waffle in its screen.
For the first time in three weeks, Sara really saw her apartment. The front room looked like a hamper full of dirty clothes had thrown up, leaving stiff socks and stained underwear over the arms of the couch and on top of the coffee table. The house itself smelled like the inside of a toilet bowl that hadn’t been flushed in weeks. Pizza crusts lined the floor like a welcome mat, and fruit flies buzzed past her face.
“Lydia?” she called. “Tee? Zach? Mama’s home.”
Watch a video clip of Elizabeth reading an excerpt from “A Maid’s Best Friend.”