Mother comes to visit

This popped into my head two days ago. Don't steal it please, internet...

At first I thought it was a rum-induced hallucination. Well what was I supposed to think? Coming back to my little shoebox apartment on Calle Octavia, pulling Rodrigo up the stairs by his suspenders, locking the door behind us and hearing a husky "Hello darling," from the wicker chair in the corner. I nearly jumped out of my skin! Rodrigo yowled like a cat with its tail caught in a ceiling fan and was gone with barely an 'Adios'.
I flicked on the lamp and there she was, in my chair, in my home, looking like the queen of bloody Sheba.
"Evening, Holly dearest. I say, he was quite a catch wasn't he! Lovely cheeks. Must be all that salsa. Into older women, is he?"
How rude! I pretended I hadn't heard that.  
"What are you doing here?" I demanded. She clutched her chest in mock horror.
"It's been three years! Is that any way to greet your mother, who has been missing you terribly?"
"Oh pull the other one. I heard the corks popping as soon as I shut the front door."
She feigned a pained look. "My baby flew the nest without so much as a backwards glance! Darling I had to drown my sorrows the minute you were gone."
"You never once called, never once checked in on me. You really expect me to believe you came all this way just because you miss me? I thought you and Father would relish a bit of alone time after all those years."
There was a moment of silence. "I've left him,” she said, looking away. 
"I've left the brandy-soaked old fart. I couldn't bear it - after you went he just shut himself up in the workshop with those bloody elves and that was that. Seven centuries of marriage and nothing left to say to each other. It's quite tragic really."
I must admit that shut me up for a moment. I rallied valiantly though. 
"How did you even get in here?"
She tapped the side of her nose. "The usual way. Don't tell me you've never used it? It's in your genes after all."
"Mine, maybe, not yours! You don't get the genes along with the surname!"
"Yes well funnily enough there was a Klaus clause in the wedding contract. Did all sorts of funny things to my heredi-diddy-thing. Went hand in hand with the not aging business. That was a big draw, I admit. Yes, live forever at the North Pole, share your husband with a battalion of ostentatiously optimistic, brightly dressed, weird little people, keep the family home running and educate you four while he gets all the attention, but not age over centuries? It did rather tip the scales. And it was fun to begin with."
She waved a half- empty glass in my direction. "You know, I've never tried this stuff before... only ever sherry and brandy back home. Potent, isn't it!"
"Are you drinking my rum?!" I yelped, as she drained what was left in the glass. 
"No," she said emphatically. "I drank your rum. I don't suppose you have any more?"
I huffed indignantly, throwing my hands up in frustration, and kicked my shoes off into a corner. 
"How long have you been sitting there?" I asked as I walked over to the fridge for some water. 
"Hours, darling. I thought I could surprise you after work but when it was clear you weren't coming straight home I got rather bored. Can't say I think much of your apartment, but the view is fabulous," she said with a glint in her eye. 
I raised an eyebrow at her. 
"I hope you didn't get up to any mischief, mother."
"Mischief? I wouldn't dream of it, darling! No harm in looking though, is there?"
She stared wistfully out of the window, which overlooked an outdoor boxing gym tucked between two alleyways running past my building. It was empty and silent in the moonlight, but would have been full of sweaty, muscular eye candy a few hours ago.
"Your father wasn't always fat, you know. Not when we started. The sacks were heavy and it was hard work. You could bounce a penny off his pecs.. But then all the children started leaving out milk and cookies, sherry and mince pies, and it all adds up, and of course the workshop started employing more staff and there was more automation and less for him to do... and so he spent half his time sitting at his desk designing instead of in the workshop making, so by the time that stupid poem came out he'd grown an extra three chins and at least two spare tyres. And he’s not getting any younger." 
“Obviously,” I snorted scornfully. Mother looked at me sadly.
“Oh, Holly, dear, where is all this contempt coming from? You’re far too young to be this cynical!”
“I’m 218, mother. I think that’s old enough,” I said indignantly.
“Psshhht,” she hissed, waving a hand dismissively. “Please. You’re just a baby. You've been out doing your thing for five minutes and you think you know everything. Take it from Mummy, darling, you don't."
She stretched languorously, like a cat. 
"Now, I've been awake far too long. Mother needs her beauty sleep." She looked at me pointedly.
"Oh, no. No no no no no. You're not staying here!" I protested.
"It's gone midnight, darling. Of course I'm staying here. And tomorrow you can show me around... wherever this is."
She unfolded herself from the chair, brushed an invisible speck of dust from her long, forest-green, velvet dress (in this heat?) and sashayed over to my bedroom, having the audacity to plant a kiss on my cheek as she passed. She smelled of frost and pine trees. It was completely out of place in the oppressive humidity, and annoyingly refreshing.
"Nighty night, sweetie!" she called breezily as she closed the door in my face. 
I stood there speechless for a minute. What the hell just happened?

11:51 p.m. - 2020-10-14


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