Maybelle Coffey polished her name-plate every morning; she scrubbed her front step, wiped down the door and buffed her beautiful brass till there was a golden reflection in it – an old woman she didn’t recognise anymore. There were no mirrors in her house; somehow they had never been replaced after the last bout of decorating. The nuns bowed to her and carried on their way; she never knew if it was the same women – they cowered inside their cowls, showing only a glimpse of barely two-dimensional faces, always looking at their feet. But, Maybelle wasn’t convinced with this show of humility; she’d been talking to spirits all her life and could feel darkness emanating from them before they’d turned the corner.
In the afternoons, she sat behind her front room curtains and watched them casting their prayers. It was none of her business if the people of the town ate the lie; were sucked in by the sweeping black gowns and the stark white band of hope. She lived a quiet life in her old house; it had been her home since before it was built. Maybelle liked to think of herself as a caretaker and she’d been watching the convent since childhood, ever since Sister Mary Angela became Mother Superior – that was the darkest day of all.