“Edgar’s absolutely mad,” my cousin Mildred said to me one day. We sat in her parlor drinking tea, as we often did on a Sunday afternoon. The treacly slime shouldn’t even be termed tea.
“You’re sure about that?” Although I agreed her brother’s behaviour had been a bit strange lately, I didn’t think he’d gone mad. At least not yet.
“Yes, completely,” Mildred’s mother, my aunt Jeannie, said. She heaped sugar into her tea. It helped to cover the unbearable flavour of over-steeped leaves. “We’ve arranged an… intervention.”
“An intervention? Like on TV?” My hand stopped midway to sipping my tea, and my cup hung in the air in front of my face. I blinked at Mildred, stared at Jeannie. I opened my mouth. Shut it. Drank my tea, grimacing at the taste. “Edgar isn’t mad. Just a bit… a bit…”
“See, even you can’t explain Edgar’s behaviour” Mildred said. She glanced at her watch. Reaching for a small cucumber sandwich, she nibbled at the corner like it might bite her back. “They should be at the house for him now.”
I envisioned a white jacket with extremely long arms, two burly men in equally white suits cornering Edgar in the garden. He’d never understand. Jumping to my feet, I almost spilled tea onto Jeannie’s pristine carpet. The cup rattled in the saucer as I dumped it on the table.
“He isn’t crazy. He just like butterflies.” Stared at them in childlike fascination. But that didn’t make him batty. “But your tea, not that’s insane.”