Bedtime Story by Robert J. Wiersema

By Robert J. Wiersema

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Example text

When I got down to the kitchen, I poured Jacqui and me each a glass of wine. As I carried the glasses and the bottle into the living room, I pictured myself passing the glass to Jacqui, reminding her of what we had been doing eleven years ago right now, the night that David was born. I imagined a moment of shared history, of tenderness. She had been flicking through channels, but she turned the TV off as I set her glass on the end table next to her. She didn’t say anything. “Davy’s to bed,” I said as I sat down.

She shook her head. ” She walked away before I could say anything. Mareigh swept aside the heavy curtain and stepped into Matthias’s sleeping room without warning. He hurriedly finished pulling the new shirt over his head. “I’m worried for you,” she whispered, so as not to be overheard by the guard at the foot of the narrow staircase. Matthias was scared too, more than he would let his mother see. His insides had turned to water when the captain delivered his summons, and the feeling was only getting worse.

Chris,” she said to my back as I turned out of the room, but I didn’t respond. I walked through the house and out the back door. I navigated the narrow path in the spill of light from the kitchen window and unlocked the door in the back of the garage. He sat up slowly, listening to the faint sound of his parents’ voices as they rose up the stairs, drifted through the partly open door. After a few moments, the voices grew louder, not really shouting but definitely upset. It was impossible to ignore them, to tune them out.

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