A Simple Funeral
Chapter 3, page 6







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The deep pain of her sprained ankle masked the snake bite. Lily limped home, collapsing over the front door threshold and into Pearl's arms as the Irish house maid cried mistakenly "Oh Miss Pearl, poor Miss Pearl!"
   "She most go to her bedroom!" said Pearl, dragging Lily to the stairs and in the struggle, deciding quickly, "It is the coolest room in the house, and the shade will comfort her."
   "Yes, Miss Lily." And somehow, between the two of them, they got her into bed. "Fetch me water and cloths. I must bathe her."
   Pearl removed Lily's dress and was frightened to see so much blood. "You must not call the Doctor, Pearl. Tell no one!" begged Lily.
    "But you are bleeding!"
    "If you tell, we are ruined. It is Washo's, Pearl, Washo's!" A convulsion gripped Lily, and another flood of blood soaked the sheets. Pearl grabbed water and rags from the maid and pushed her out the door. She bundled everything that came out of Lily and stowed it in the hope chest at the end of the bed. Then she bathed her sister and spread new linens beneath her, but they were soon soaked as well. Pearl ran from the room and screamed for help, for the doctor, for someone to help.
   Later, in the grim hush of a house sheltering the dead, she overhead Elaine say to Trapper "Pearl was improper, dear, and in trouble. It is best we hold a simple funeral and not reveal the circumstances. Lily must be protected from gossip. We will take her to San Francisco and put this behind us." 


Defiance for all eternity

Nettle - Defiance

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