Adela touched her nose, just as she always had when her mother mentioned it; she had always been conscious of it; she knew it was too big for her face. But as she had got older her face had filled out more and her nose had no longer looked so obvious. That hadn’t stopped her mother from criticising though, hence the comments about her hair.
Adela had had boyfriends, not many, three in total including Connor Murphy. None of which had lasted long because she wouldn’t “put out” as they called it. Although when her co-workers and neighbours had heard about her win, the single, and even married men, had started to smile at her and wink, and two had even come onto her, and she had known their wives. She had said no of course to all of them, she knew what they were after and it wasn’t her mind, nor even or body come to that. She was a sensible woman after all.
She knew her neighbours and co-workers laughed at her behind her back, and even to her face. The twenty eight year old spinster with no redeeming features…except her money now of course…locked up with a raging alcoholic and nut case, only leaving the house to go to work ten hours a week.
Her mother had railed and cursed and sobbed and threatened when Adela had taken the job at the local post office. She couldn’t cope alone she’d said, she would die she’d said, she would kill herself she’d said, and it would be all Adela’s fault, ungrateful, selfish girl. But Adela for once had stood her ground and had assured her mother that she would only be working in the mornings, she would be home to take her to her appointments, to cook her meals and clean up after her.
Nevertheless her mother had made it as hard as possible for her, but Adela had stood firm and had stayed at the post office for two and a half years, even after her mother had died. Later she had taken another job in the evening cleaning elderly people’s homes. Until she had won the money that is.
Her mother had died three months before this momentous event and had left everything to David and Daniel and not a thing to Adela. Not a piece of jewellery, not an ornament, nothing. David had said she could remain in the house until she found somewhere else to live. Adela had hardly been able to believe that he was doing this. The house she’d been born in. The house she’d shared with her mother for twenty eight years. The house she had cleaned and cooked in. The house with the staircase she had carried her mother up when she had been out of it with the drink.