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The Onlookers

They knew that – some of them did. Some of them watched her, silently encouraging her to sit, sit and shut down. Not sit and be mindfully relaxed. They wanted her to sit and remove herself from the world. The others wanted her to be active – get the things she loved doing done. Relaxing was unnecessary. There was time to relax when she was old, decrepit, and basically dead. The rest, the small population hiding through and behind the others wanted her to cease to exist. Rebecca knew it. She could feel it weaving through the stares of the others. All of them moving silently through the air, tangled together, weighted down and unwilling to move from their corner.

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Letters of Longing

Over the years, I’ve proven myself to be a bit of an unofficial handwriting expert-hobbyist. It’s somewhat of a party trick. Tell your subject to write the following poem, a poem of my own invention, “The goblin quickly erupts picking up his zax, after the jerk waiter served him decaf coffee.” It’s a little lengthy, but people are usually distracted by its corkiness than to tear it apart. Most people go up in arms that “zax” is a made up word. It’s not. It’s a noun. Look up the definition if you don’t believe me. The crazy thing is through this party trick of mine, I’ve accumulated dozens of writing samples that look nothing like my own. With some additional information I’ve been able to open a store credit card here or there, made a withdrawal or two from bank accounts, but up until recently I hadn’t had enough samples to put into motion my greatest plan.

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Watching Delilah

Watching her from a far doing the things that made her happiest – reading, writing, driving around, taking hikes through the local mountain ranges, going out with her friends, drinking at bars, dancing with strange men, men who were her friends, all men who were older than she was. All those things and more gave him a sense of unrest, a sense of weary, a sense that she was putting herself out there too much, giving the world too much of herself, and certainly – he assumed – giving too much of herself away to the men around her.

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Carmella (A Cooper Twin Story)

Nick looked at his baby sister as she ran out of the house toward the car. At a whopping 5 feet 5 inches she was nearly a full foot shorter than he. Her body had filled out and from certain angles Nick saw a hot upperclassmen instead of his sister. While Carmella took after her mother, she had something that her mother did not – she had a twin. She probably could have skipped a grade or two, but Carmella’s focus was always divided between her own school work and Nick’s.

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Susanna

The flour had dried out her hands. It had worked its way deep into the shallow lines that ran across her palms, and up through her fingers. She loved the texture of the flour embedded into her skin. It was part of the reason she always made the dough the day before and left it to refrigerate when doing her sugar cookies. Today she was pulling out chunks, flouring the table, flouring the dough ball, rolling out the dough, flouring the cookie cutters, and then cutting out the festive shapes. Fifteen gingerbread men, fifteen snowmen, fifteen stockings, fifteen candy canes, and fifteen stars. All politely waiting on the floured parameter of the table for the batch ahead to be taken out from the oven. Then each group would be placed on the cookie sheet and put in the oven for nine minutes. And so the pattern continued: sticky dough, flour, flour, flour, sticky dough, flour, flour, flour, oven mit, repeat.