On Top

I lost track of how many times I tried to convince her to get help, tried to tell her she wasn’t invincible, that it would catch up with her sooner or later.

She’d never listen, just laugh and tap me on the nose. “Don’t be such a worry wart,” she’d say. “I’m fine. You know I always come out on top.”

Damn her. So now I’m standing in this stupid black suit in this stupid graveyard listening to ‘Sorry for your loss’ over and over and over.

Sure, sis, you’ll always come out on top. Except when you’re six feet under.

***

Word Count: 101

Writer: Simon Hole

Easy Money

“Are ya sure he won’t be home?” Billy whispered.

“I’m sure,” Jess answered. “Every Friday morning he tells me how he stayed out late playing poker the night before. The guy tells me everything that goes on in his life. He keeps some cash in a coffee can in the cupboard above the sink for emergencies. Now get in here and shut the door, will ya?”

As they stood in the kitchen, a three-quarter moon shining through the window being the only light, a low growl came from the shadowed living room.

“Did he tell ya ’bout the frickin’ dog, Jess?”

***

Word Count: 101

Writer: Roy Dorman

Birthday Greetings

“Happy birthday, I miss you.”

The handwriting is small, the letters carefully formed. No name is signed to the note in the otherwise blank card, just a tiny heart. No return address, no stamp. Rain has been falling heavily for days, and yet the envelope is dry and unwrinkled.

I imagine the sender walking in the winter grey, feet cold and fingers numb, the card kept safe from the elements inside a coat. It is an act of love, redolent with regret. A beautiful, but wasted, act. It’s not my birthday and I have only lived here a week.

Addressee unknown.

***

Word Count: 101

Writer: Angela J. Maher