takes a jab at the guest on his show and I settle back on
I wear I pop the top off the cold beer I’ve just retrieved from the fridge
and take a long swig. I’m not really one for jewelry but over time I’ve
grown accustomed to the heavy band and some of its finer functions, like
how it doubles as a bottle opener quite nicely. With a flick of my wrist I
toss the cap on the coffee table and try to focus on the television, but I
struggle. I’m tired. It’s nothing new; I can’t remember the last time I
wasn’t exhausted. Had to be before David, I surmise. Surely I’d slept better
before the little monster latched onto me?
child I mute the television and turn toward the closed
behind which he lies sleeping. My keen Wanderer hearing
in fact it doesn’t detect anything at all, causing the hairs on the back
of my neck to stand on end. A paralyzing fear snakes its way through my
stomach and before I can think twice I’m off the sofa. Mother’s
instinct…that’s how one of the women at the M.O.P.S. (Mothers of
Preschoolers) group I’d been going to had described it. At the time I’d
thought she was nuts and had almost let her know, using very specific terminology
that there was no fucking way I was plagued by some feminine sixth sense. Then
I remembered that they all thought I was a woman, thanks to a little mental
tampering on my part so I could fit in. Looking at it in that context her
assessment wasn’t so offensive, I decided. Still I’d Googled that shit
when I got home only to discover she’d been spot on. The unexplainable
feelings of dread that I sometimes get are apparently frequent in mothers
through David’s door with no consideration for the sleeping
breeze from the window that I don’t remember leaving open and panicking I
flip on a light. I run to the bed and yank back the covers that I find nothing
out of the ordinary despite already knowing something is very, very wrong.
my forehead as my eyes dart from the empty bed to the
to the malevolent grin and dark luminescent eyes floating in the shadows.
I lunge for the Sylph calmly hovering mere inches beyond the window sill.
cry with mocking humor. Before I can get my hands
tufts of bright smoke that swiftly extinguish before my eyes.
fingers dug so tightly into the window frame that it cracks. I
about disoriented; it’s difficult to think. I have to move, I have to find
him. My battle-ready body responds to the simple command and all higher
reasoning checks out. I leap through the window into the night; it’s time