The Mooney Farm continued to change and grow by leaps and bounds, and lately, to everyone’s dismay, by pounds. George had opened the door to his newest problems, a single mother and her son, Claire and Oliver. Before she’d moved in he’d described her as being “a bit on the heavy side”, blowing his cheeks out and lifting his arms into a round shape. Such raw uncouthness was typical of George when he described people by their physical traits or peculiarities, but it was all taken in stride because George – who himself resembled an old weathered garden gnome when he waddled around in his red cap, puffy coat, and mudders – was just George, and that was okay.
Claire was around thirty, uneducated, unemployed, broke, and currently on public assistance: a fine choice for a novice slumlord on a wide learning curve. She had come to the Farm with the story that they had lost their home in a drug bust near Naples, where her boyfriend had been engaged in a lucrative indoor herbal gardening business of which she claimed to have had no knowledge of or involvement in whatsoever. She also weighed nearly three hundred pounds and had a constant case of the giggles. George liked her from the start, her tales of poor life choices tugging at his heartstrings. Mostly he just liked women with some meat on their bones.
Another one of George’s infamous community meals had been announced and everyone was invited. On her way up to her cabin, Eva stopped by the big house to find out when the supper was taking place and found both kitchens in absolute shambles. Claire had taken over the bigger kitchen on the new side, and it was one big hot mess, with every inch of counter space and table splashed with her food items and cooking gadgets. Had she been wearing an apron, it easily could have read “Gluttony is a dish best served to me.” Eva scrunched her nose in distaste when she saw Claire sitting at the table eating a cherry pie out of the tin, and backed away quietly.
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