June wasn’t a mystery to her. Despite the incense and cryptic air the woman carried with her, Mary understood her to a T. Every person who has wanted anything at all would understand.
It was Andy that tripped her up.
Andy, who went along with every one of her ideas and stuck a rusty knife into the back of that stupid, stupid man who followed her from Suzie’s. Andy, who dragged the body off to the docks and wiped the blade off the edge of her skirt. She drank only water, ate every type of meat on their island, and smirked whenever Ezra started on a particularly questionable ‘joke’.
Mary mulled over Andy more than she ought to, but she can’t be too careful when it came to new subordinates in her budding empire. Miranda wouldn’t lift a finger against her because Mary protected her girls, Sully was too lethargic to change loyalties (and even when convinced to join them, she was almost too lazy to keep her word). Myra was retired (forcibly), Suzie’s loyalty she couldn’t question without questioning herself, her roots, and her intentions towards this place she called her own. May only desired skin, endless amounts of it to ink.
So Andy, was a concern.
Andy, whose given name was Andromeda, who hated the weight of her name, the ardor Caleb had in destroying every bit of rebellion she showed. Observant, brilliant Andy, who astounded Ezra with her ideas during their time together in the mines. Quiet, invisible Andy, who devoured information for Isaac and without reproach spat it back out to him down to the very last syllable. Reliable Andy, who believed Daniel without ever voicing her doubt, even when she doubted. Mary was sure she did. Anybody who believed them without question would’ve been made to show their loyalty at least once.
Andy, with a grin on her lips, showed her devotion over and over.
Andy could walk into a room of strangers and pick out the rat. It happened a lot in the beginning weeks into Mary’s reign, when naysayers thought she was still trying to get comfortable on her throne. They didn’t realize she had built her own throne, chose the wood, varnish, and picked the splinters out from her own hands. No one dared to pull a gun on her, but the knives were plentiful. Poison happened once, and the perpetrator so ashamed they had been found hanging from the bannisters.
Andy didn’t dispose of the bodies if there wasn’t a mess. There was something about touching others when it didn’t involve violence that drove her away. Not shy away, no, but Mary never saw her touch another person unless her ringed fingers were wrapped around their neck, buried halfway through their eye-sockets, or used to wrench open their mouth. She’s found clever, delightful ways to make people talk, full sentences, Andy’s long fingers prodding around their gums. Once, a woman bit into Andy’s thumb until she drew blood. Mary had never seen a person’s jaw permanently unhinged before, but apparently Andy has, because the first thing she does is press just enough so that the flesh shudders under the ruined bone.
Mary does not throw up. This earns her one of Andy’s grins, delighted and free.