Dead Spider Curl

We’re loaded down with tampons and pads, and Mom’s heading straight for the cute checker’s lane. Seriously? I’d die if I had to stand there while he rung us out. It’s obvious, right? I totally get it, she’s distracted, sad about Lance and all that, but right now we’ve got bigger issues. I steer her toward the old lady’s lane.

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Ms. Solevacj’s Leaf-mould

Ms. Solevacj was in the middle of her 72-lap morning mile, the early sluggishness in her muscles burned off, leaving her feeling strong, a machine gliding through the water. This was why she swam, to reach this Zen-like headspace, her mind and body simultaneously relaxed and stimulated. In this state, and only in this state, she could think clearly, almost calmly, about the Smiler virus.

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In the Closet with Carrie

We were pressed against the back wall behind a tangle of dresses and hangers, the Boone’s Farm in our stomachs rising against the reek of moth balls.

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Beetle in her Pocket

“I’m going to be an entomologist,” Isabelle says. Her dress doesn’t have a pocket, or she’d have brought one of her pets. Her hands feel empty.

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Waiting for the Trustafarian Migration

Trees creak in the steady wind rushing off the foothills.

Trustafarians dash from coffee shop couches into the streets to spin like bearded dust devils, worshipping the wind. They call the winds chinooks, just like the locals, not that they’ve met many of those. Rare birds, those locals.

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“An eerie and emotional story about two brothers caught up in a mysterious plague that empties people out and leaves them as hollow, smiling shells” -A.C. Wise, My Favorite Short Fiction of 2020

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