POT: Pots and Pots By Beverly Jones

Word: POT/LICK
Word count: 487

POTS AND POTS
By Beverly Jones
Amelia opened the gate just enough for the car to slide through. She crawled back into the pickup, eased it past the post, and jumped out to fasten the gate. She didn’t want to chase the escaping pony Houdini again.
She could hear the music and laughter from inside the house. Someone was here again. She sighed. For how long this time she thought.
She walked in juggling the grocery bags. Her husband looked up.
“Peter is in town for a couple of weeks. I told him he could stay here.”
She mustered a smile for Peter. Most of the cousins didn’t have a lick of sense. At least Peter was charming and would actually carry on a conversation with her. But she glared at her husband. There were pork chops enough for the two of them and the kids. How was she to stretch that for another person, one with a hefty appetite?
Amelia pulled her husband aside and hissed at him. “Would you please ask me if it’s alright to have someone stay here? And call me at work so I know how many mouths to buy groceries for?”
He looked at her bewildered. “What is the problem? He’s my cousin; he’s family. You just don’t understand.”
That was a recurring accusation, “You just don’t understand.” Amelia sighed again. She certainly didn’t understand why being family excused rudeness.
The children burst into the house from the back yard, squealing with delight at seeing Peter. They fell into him, all three rolling on the floor, shouting with laughter.
The days passed peacefully enough. Peter fished with her son and applauded her daughter’s equine skills. Although Peter never seemed to have any visible means of support, he pitched in to help pay for household necessities. His girlfriend worked in an upscale hotel a couple of counties away. Maybe that was where the money came from.
Everything was fine for a while.
Amelia opened the gate just enough for the car to slide through. She crawled back into the pickup, eased it past the post, and jumped out to fasten the gate. She didn’t want to chase the escaping pony Houdini again.
The children raced up to the car.
“Momma, Momma, come see! Peter planted flowers in the pots by the front door.”
Huge pots stood on either side of the walkway. Amelia meant to plant bright flowers to contrast with the grey house siding, but somehow never found time. She skidded to a stop on the sidewalk, staring at the plants and shaking with anger. “Oh, yes, he did. Time to feed the animals now.”
They raced around the house as she stalked into the living room. Try as she might, she could hear her voice rising.
“Out! Out! I have children and do not think what you planted by my front door is funny. Out! And take your pot out of my pots as you leave!”

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