I never should have taken the job.
The bitch, I thought. I never should have taken the job. Next time, go with your gut, Alicia, I said to myself.
The Burkette’s yard was a mangled mess of spruce trees, half-dead Broadmoor junipers, and white oaks that hadn’t had a haircut in a decade. A “pssshhh” sound escaped my lips, and I had to stop myself from glowering before I turned around and faced Mrs Burkette. She stood back a few paces, her pale hands fumbling nervously at the sides of her skirt, waiting for me to react.
“When’s the last time you-all had a gardener out here?” I asked, trying to keep my tone neutral. My gut was telling me not to take the job, but my brain was reminding me that college bills were right around the corner.
“Oh, I don’t know. Maybe six months or so,” she replied. Either she was a complete idiot, or she thought I was. I arched my eyebrows and looked her straight in the eye—something my mother and grandmother would have never done to a w…