Begonia

The peonies were a hand’s turn past perfection. Instead of the tight, round folds Holly had expected, the flowers flared outward like grandparent arms open for a hug. The petals had become papery as their veins dried out in the sun, and as they curled back, the canary pollen rods below were exposed. Even if …

The Dive

Freya’s silhouette was barely distinguishable from the dark line of the sea shore, but that didn’t bother Catherine; not when she could hear her voice over the soft waves. “So tell me about this boyfriend you’ve been so caught up with.” Catherine smiled and shook her head without regard for sand tangling up in her …

The Gamble

The perpetual stench of stale cigarette smoke had permeated into the cracked fabric chair. Renny O’Reilly dropped his jaw as he took a drag of his own cigarette letting the smoke leak out of his mouth and nostrils in a loose, unconscious exhale. Fresh air was hardly a necessity at this point. He barely missed …

Valentine

The bell rang brightly and Zuzu pulled her plump, red lips into a smile. The next client was right on time even with the foot of fresh snow outside. Her bridal party trailed behind her like a brood of baby ducks as they streamed into Gingersnap Bridal. This would be a fun one and she …

The Meeting

He’d shown up late but he’d shown up. At least he could tell his wife that. Dawn had yet to break and the whole town was tinted liked the brightness had been dialed back a couple notes. The meeting was in some church he’d driven by a million times. Before now, it had occupied his …