Lettie Mae Thornton pours herself some coffee. Sensible, at the beginning of the day. As the TV asks, quite seriously for once, exactly what it means to accept Jesus as your personal savior, Tara does the bills. "We'll write a check for the electric and put it in the water envelope then stick the check for the water bill in the electric envelope." Two possums, she's saying: two fears and hates, mix them up and toss them in the water. Lettie Mae pours vodka in her cup, down to the last drop. The mug is child-made and daughter-decorated: A cow, wearing a crown, celebrating its birthday under a childish scrawl: "Party!" Sad enough but there's sadness to spare. "They'll both think it was a mistake and call about it. Then we'll be in the clear for another month." And that's the possum secret right there, isn't it? You're only clear for a month at a time. The second you start thinking you're done, that you've solved it, that you're allowed to be happy, festive scarf around your neck, they fucking come at you from a whole other angle. Our joy in reclaimed territory is only mania, doomed to pass and futile, but: it is still joy.
"I need four hundred and forty-five dollars," Lettie Mae says, wearing grey and a white, white robe, like a sacrifice. Like a baptism on the way. "No way, Mama. We are broke." Momma sits and sips at her coffee, reiterating that she needs it for her exorcism. "You need to do what normal people do. Stop drinking and go to AA meetings." Lettie Mae tells her that, as they both know and the demon too, that she's not exactly a "group person," and Tara asks if the demon's aware of her vodka-soaked coffee habit, which by the way is not fooling anybody. "I can't help it. The demon told me to finish off everything in the house today. It doesn't want me to get exorcised." Tara wonders if maybe Lettie Mae can get the demon to get a damn job. Lettie Mae says the most intelligent thing she's ever said: "The demon has a job. Going after people that are weak but still have faith." Which is to say: the living. Every single one of us.