It had been a long time since anyone in the family had tried to look up Pedro. Too long, perhaps, because all they were able to find was a gravestone in the town cemetery with his name and a two year old final date on it.
“Grandma is going to be annoyed, “said Lara. “She says he still owes her for some thing that went down in Laredo one time.”
“Grandpa says he still owes Pedro for pulling his fat out of the fire a time or three,” countered Sanchez. “Where’d you rather be if you were Grand-cousin Pedro?”
“Grand-cousin isn’t a word,” Lara corrected crossly. “Will everyone treat us like this is our fault?”
“I don’t see how they can,” Sanchez replied reasonably, “after all, this says he’s been dead for two years already. I mean, what were you doing two years ago? My Mum decided I had to do remedial maths courses all those summer holidays.”
“I was helping Great-aunt Augusta in her shop three afternoons a week,” answered Lara. “As the cheap labour, but that won’t stop them blaming us for him not being alive.”
“And that’ll give someone a chance to claim that we should be indentured because we stuffed up,” added Sanchez.
Lara turned to him and asked, “Has Ernesto at you too?”
“Were we set up to fail?” Sanchez turned his attention to the gravestone again. “If we’re being shafted, then we’re entitled to walk….”
“And not go back, ever?” Lara sounded frightened, but added thoughtfully, “If we constructed a reasonable proof…but would it be accepted?”
“Can we ram it down Ernesto’s throat so he can’t ignore it, don’t you mean?” Sanchez glowered.
“Perhaps I can help with that.” The voice from behind them was smiling and they whipped around to find a tall, older man in a serape regarding them with approval. “I’m sorry about the gravestone; I got tired of people thinking that they owned me. You can call me Grand-cousin Pedro.”
This is now followed by Pushing Up Daisies 2.