But the owner was too worried about his humanity to relent. No, there was no time at all. The paper, distributed free along with the weekend editions of the national tabloids, went to press Wednesday night. If their response wasnt in by then, it would have to wait another week; meanwhile they would be open to all kinds of accusations. If the resource manager didnt wish to take care of this and thoroughly let him say so. There was no problem finding someone else perhaps to run the human resources division, too . . .
Just a minute. I didnt mean to . . . The casually delivered ultimatum stung and bewildered him. What am I supposed to do with my daughter? Wholl take care of her? Youve met her mother, he added bitterly. Shell murder me . . .
Thats wholl take care of her, the owner interrupted, pointing to his office manager, who turned red at the thought of being entrusted with the chore.
What do you mean?
What do you think I mean? Shell drive your daughter and look after her like her own child. And now lets roll up our sleeves and prove that were as human as the weasel . . . that we care. For Gods sake, my good man, is there any choice? No, there isnt.
© 2004 Abraham B. Yehoshua
English translation © 2006 by Hillel Halkin
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Blood at the Root
"A gripping, timely, and important examination of American racism."
- PW Starred Review
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