Welcome! Thanks for coming. This week I continue Maggie's story incorporating the word prompt "nail" at the end. Here we meet the other important person in her story.
Maggie's days were spent in hard labor making beds, and cleaning toilets. Every day at two she would stop by the Roberts' suite. Anne would prop her baby, Penn, on the maid’s lap and open a book.
The lovely scent of the freshly-washed baby made her smile. He gurgled and trained his blue eyes on her, studying her face as she read. His mother would steal into the master bedroom for an afternoon rendezvous with her handsome husband.
Maggie would sigh, wondering if she’d ever feel that kind of passion again.
At three, she’d put the sleeping baby down, pick up the twenty dollars left on the dresser for her and tiptoe out of the room.
Maggie smiled more days than she didn’t, even under the burden of the heavy, physical work. As the thirtieth of the month drew near, Aggie took her aside.
“Burt’s been telling me about you and the Roberts family. It’s not a good idea, girl. They’ll be leavin’ and you’ll be sad.”
“Too late,” Maggie brushed her off.
On the thirty-first, Maggie dragged herself to work. Her heart was heavy. This would be her last day with Anne and baby Penn.
As she pushed her cart down the hall, tears threatened. The Roberts’ door was open and she heard laughter. The squeak of the wheels on the old cart announced Maggie’s arrival. Anne popped her head out.
“Oh, good! You’re here,” she said, pulling the young woman into the room.
Penn bounced in his baby seat and shrieked with joy. The sight of his smile and the sound of his laughter chased the sadness out of her heart.
“We have a surprise for you,” Anne said, barely able to stand still.
“You do?” Maggie’s eyebrows rose.
Mr. Roberts joined them. He slipped his arm around his wife’s waist. They glanced at each other, grinning. Anne got up on tiptoe and kissed him on the cheek.
Maggie’s gaze bounced from one to the other and back again.
“We have an offer for you,” the husband said.
“Tell her, tell her!”
“Why don’t you?” He gazed at his wife with a loving twinkle in his eye.
“Maggie, we want you to come work for us.”
“You’re not in love with this job at the hotel, are you?”
“In love with it? I hate it with a passion. Mrs. Roberts and little Penn are the highlight of my day.”
“Come with us, Maggie. We have a big apartment. You’d have your own room.”
“And bath, too. And I’ll double whatever you’re making here.”
Maggie pinched her arm. This is a dream. It isn’t real.
“Maybe you’d better sit down,” Anne said, ushering the maid over to a chair.
“Are you serious?”
“Penn adores you and so do I,” Anne said, warmth visible in her eyes.
“We have a penthouse on Park Avenue. I own the building. We’ll see that you're comfortable.”
“Are you kidding?”
“Never been more serious in my life. My wife says you’re the best nanny. How soon can you pack?”
“In an hour.”
“Done.” Mr. Roberts shook her hand. Anne hugged her and Penn clapped his hands.
“Darling, would you send John over to pick her up?”
“Of course. Our chauffeur will be there at…”he glanced at his watch. “Six. How’s that?”
“Perfect. Thank you so much. I don’t know what to say.”
“Just be ready.” After another look at his watch, he left the room.
Maggie paced in front of the decrepit building she’d called home. A shiny, black limousine stopped. A tall, handsome man got out, opened the back door and tipped his cap.
He took her suitcase and placed it in the trunk while she settled into the backseat. The ride was smooth as a magic carpet.
“John here,” he said in a perfect English accent.
“Nice to meet you.”
“Don’t be thinking you’re going to take the Roberts’ for a ride, young woman. They are the most decent sort. I’ve got my eye on you. I’ll be watching. Better not find any of the silver or jewelry missing or you’ll answer to me. I nailed the last nanny. She's doing five years in jail for theft.”
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