“It’s here,” said a short woman with dark hair as she opened her front door to a woman who looked just like her, but was two inches taller.
“What’s here,” said the taller woman.
“You’ll see.” The two walked through a large room with a sofa and TV on the left and a dining table with six chairs on the right. The short woman led the way down a claustrophobic hallway lined with photographs of daisies in twelve by twelve frames. Each photograph was the same, a black and white picture of a single daisy. They passed three closed doors, one on the left and two on the right. The doors also had pictures of daisies hanging on them.
“I bet you’re excited,” said the short woman.
“I don’t know what to be excited about,” said the taller woman.
“You’ll see,” said the short woman with a quick hop in the air.
At the end of the hallway was a fourth door. This door had a color photograph of a large red orchid. ‘Dendrobium Curtis’ Gem’ had been scrawled in awkward hand across the corner of the photograph.
“Close your eyes,” ordered the short woman.
“Oh, Katia, stop it,” the taller woman said, reaching for the door handle.
“I said close your eyes,” Katia said, blocking the door, “you’ll ruin the surprise.” The taller woman shrugged her shoulders and closed her eyes.
“Are they tight,” Katia asked.
“Yes, they’re tight for Heaven’s sake,”
“Ok, take my hand, I’ll lead you in.” The door opened with a creak. The taller woman mumbled something about WD-40, but kept her eyes closed. A rush of warm air caressed the two women as they entered the room. The taller woman could smell flowers and feel sunlight. They were in the sunroom, she had known they would be before the door was opened, that wasn’t the surprise. She felt her sister’s hands on her shoulders as she was positioned in the room.
“Ok, open ‘em up!” Katia said. The taller woman opened her eyes, took a step back, and took a deep breath.
“I don’t understand,” she said.
“It’s solid mahogany with a pearl velvet interior,”
“Solid mahogany? That must have been expensive,” she ran her fingers along the coffin’s polished exterior.
“Terribly, but, Rada, I couldn’t resist. It looked so comfortable.” Katia pushed open the heavy lid.
“It does look comfortable, have you tried it?”
“Yep, it’s nice.” Katia smiled. Rada felt the soft white velvet interior and ran her fingertips along the piping on the velvet pillow. She picked a stray dark hair from the pillow and smoothed the crease where her sister’s head had been.
“It’s beautiful,” Rada whispered.
“You want some tea?” Katia asked.
“Sure, I’ll have some tea,” Rada smiled. Katia closed the lid of the coffin and ushered her sister out of the sunny room. Off the long hallway the sisters made a left and Katia pushed open the swinging door to the kitchen. They sat down at a small square table with two chairs. Katia started the tea while Rada thumbed through a magazine.
“I saw Dr. Norris with that secretary of his at the market yesterday,” Rada said, not taking her eyes off the magazine.
“Oh, his poor wife,” Katia shook her head and poured the tea.
“Poor wife nothing, she gets half his money and doesn’t have put up with his nonsense,” Rada said. Katia laughed and slurped her hot tea.
“She’s cute, that secretary.”
“You’ve seen her too?”
“He brought her to choir practice,” Katia rolled her eyes at her sister.
“Shameful,” Rada giggled.
“And that red car of his, how gaudy.”
“I think it’s sexy,” Rada smiled, hiding her face behind the magazine.
“Oh don’t tell me you don’t wish you were that little secretary every now and then.”
“She’ll end up with a coffin in her sunroom too someday,” Katia said. Rada nodded and sipped her tea.
“Can I lay in the coffin? Just for a second,”
“Sure,” Katia shrugged. The sisters rinsed their tea cups in the sink and took a right hand turn down the dark daisy lined hallway. Rada waited as her sister opened the door, the familiar smell of flowers wafted over her. Katia made sure the two sections of the lid were latched together and opened the box for her sister.
“You’re taller than me so it might be short,” Katia said, taking her sister’s hand as she stepped out of her shoes and into the coffin. She laid down and crossed her hands on her chest.
“Do I look dead?” She whispered. Katia shuddered.
“I’m glad I’m dying first,” she said.