Ch1; p5

Last to arrive was grandma Eunice who was late to everything.  Although tardy she had always been present at her grandchildren’s important events.  She came bearing cake the size of half the picnic table itself.  She was the only one who seemed to think that Steven was well behaved.  Ironically after the cake had been set on the table and while she was greeting all of the older family members the demon child was busy stacking up various bits of rubbish from the garden in order to try to reach the cake.  Just then the snake who had taken up residence in a overturned barrel in the backyard slithered out of his hiding place to investigate what this little boy was doing. As soon as the snake was out in the open, Steven’s tower of junk began to wobble and loudly collapsed into a heap. This drew attention from the whole family who rushed to see if the boy was okay.  Brit’s mother, who saw the snake immediately ran screaming for a broom to chase it off with. Feeling partly responsible for the poor snake’s troubles, Brit then chased after her mother to try to reason with her.

“Mom! Wait, don’t hurt it! I….Oh, come on, it’s just a snake!” She wasn’t able to make a great case for the animal’s safety given the present state of excitement.  Meanwhile, her mother, oblivious to her pleas could be heard saying, “Yah! Hiyah! Yea, run away. Shoo!” The snake, presumably by accident, fled directly toward the mess of worrying family members trying to sort Steven out of the rubbish from the garden. As you may imagine, this caused more panic until Brit’s father finally managed to trap the snake in a bucket and temporarily move him to a shady place out of harms way.  Finally, after much coddling of Steven by his parents and grandmother and after the excitement died down it was time for the family to start the actual picnic activities. Everyone sat down to eat as Brit and her brother were asked an endless series of questions about career plans and significant others. Later graduation and farewell gifts were given before members of the extended family departed, leaving Brit, her brother, mother and father to clean up the yard and go to bed. Before walking inside, she noticed the bucket that held the trapped snake.  She began to tip it over to release him.

“Oh no,” her mother said, “that thing can NOT stay here! Dad is going to take him with you tomorrow and leave him in the woods by the train station”

“Fine…” she said, “Maybe I can sneak you on the train and take you with me.” she whispered to the snake.

“And don’t even think about hiding it somewhere to take it on the train with you!” her mother, who may or may not have overheard her, yelled from around the corner.


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