by Terek Hopkins
She was in the fourth grade when she had her first panic attack. There was a storm outside, thunder clapping at the windows, lightning dancing panic above the earth. She thought, This is what it must be like to die.
The attack started in her mind, but quickly made its way down her throat and into her chest. It grabbed a hold of her lungs and it squeezed until her breath was something that she could only catch through a singular, concentrated effort.
by Nancy Ford Dugan
They came in the night and took our values.
Someone (in the mailroom? from the cleaning service?) stripped all the plexiglass stands on each desk of the teal-blue sheet of paper that proudly listed all our corporate values.
by Kapena Landgraf
She touched nothing. Papa had died thirty years earlier, but Tutu refused to disturb what he left behind. His shirts still hung in the open closet—button-downs of light blues and whites pressed at the center with sharply ironed cuffs. Brown trousers, thick cotton and wool. Black shoes with silver buckles. Checkered neckties. Handkerchiefs tucked into the front pockets of blazers.
by John Gerard Fagan
Yukimitsu sat cross-legged by an unlit fire. The room was still except for a slither of light inching under the door. Tea bubbled somewhere out in the dark; the smell made his throat run and jutted him out of his dream-like daze. He coughed and his breath smoked. Longed for the days before he served at Court. Longed to hear her voice in the now silent rice fields.
by Laura Shaine Cunningham
For nine years, Len and Kit Callendar faced west. One morning they drove into their view.
Outside, in the predawn dark of Riverside Drive, Kit sat at the wheel of their car, motor running, while Len made several return trips up to 7B, to ensure that he had not forgotten anything.
No matter how hard he concentrated, his papers seemed to disappear as he looked at them, especially his own birth certificate.