"He ain’t got business in this place,” said Edith.Conchita turned the shower on and sloshed the water through thesoapy tub. “Juan Pablo, he’s my helper. ¿No cierto, Juanci?” Conchita peeked over her shoulder at the child and Edith saw a conspiratorialsmile slide between them.“He’ll break something and I won’t pay for it.
pay for it.You COM-PREN-DO?”“It’s OK,” said Conchita. “He help me.”The child put his dirty fingers in his mouth and drooled on them.Edith’s guts churned. On her way out of Room 6, she saw her reflection in the mirrored wall. She didn’t look directly: she was acurved line, a question mark, an ironed dress.“Just get your rugrat off my property,” Edith said in the doorway.“This sure as hell ain’t a daycare center.” She hobbled into the soupyglare outside.*Edith slurred, gimped and was plenty old. A stroke had knockedher left side out of order. She’d wrested back just enough control to drag