A Constance

Jess’s new roommate claimed she was allergic to the sun, and chewed her nails all the time. Her breath smelled like cuticles. Even so, Jess decided not to poison her.

Her name was Constance.

“Constance-ly annoying,” said Heather with a wry smile while she and Jess were out for coffee at the gym where Heather used to work. They watched the old people mill about, killing time pretending they were there to get healthy.

“She’s not that bad,” said Jess.

“Do you still have the poison?”

“The rancid mayo you gave me? Yes.”

Heather rose her eyebrows expectantly from behind her coffee mug.

“I’m not going to poison her. Just wish she wasn’t always there when I come home.”

“This is a solved problem,” said Heather. She was fond of that saying lately. Everything was a “solved problem,” except Heather’s solutions for things were, to put it delicately, outside the box.

“Forget it,” said Jess, watching a snowy-haired gentleman step onto an elliptical, sigh, and then step off. “How’s living without me?”

“Perfectly charmed.” Another fond Heatherism. “Really, I don’t know why I kept you around at all.”

“Guess I was lucky.”


Jess received a text. It was from Constance. It read: Can you pick up some pizza when you come home???? Xxx

When Jess read it aloud, Heather said, “Do they even put fingernails as toppings?”

Jess choked on her coffee, laughing and making a grossed-out face, and the expression and the splashed coffee all over the place made Heather laugh too.

“Let’s get that dame out of the house,” said Jess. “We can all hang out. She’s nicer than I make her sound.”

“So long as you bring the mayo as backup.”

“I’m not going to carry a jar of mayo around.”

“Just a dollop,” said Heather. “In a ziploc bag or something.”

“Fine,” said Jess. “But no poisoning unless I say so. And you have to be on your best behaviour.”

“Aren’t I always?” Followed by a long, rumbling, high-pitched slurp.




Day 193’s three random prompt categories were, “The sun,” “Chewing your nails,” and, “Jess and Heather.”

I’m interested to introduce a new character into this dynamic.

– H.

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