Many thanks to Charli for this provocative prompt. If you’d like to join in, please click here.
The (Other) Woman
We’re a tiny town. A breath on an Atlantic barrier island.
I’m cashier at Sweet Stuff’s Bakery. Can’t bake to save my life but sell goodies, these days with patrons six-feet-apart. My friends in flamboyant masks, chat, ask for cupcakes. I serve.
“Candle lighting tonight at 9,” Jen says behind her kitten mask.
After closing, I pull on my black hoodie, purple face mask, and stride to the town-center gazebo. 100 candles lit. 100 deaths. The wind off the ocean is cold, snaps at the candle flames. Someone sings “Hallelujah.”
“Eric succumbed tonight.”
My heart stutters.
Town bells toll.