Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Note: An entry on the books in more detail is coming soon. Until then, enjoy some flash fiction.

The lights were out and we could see only because our eyes had adjusted and the full moon beamed sleepily through the thin curtains. My eyes stung but my heart’s angry palpitations were slowly soothed by Temple’s soft humming as she ran her fingers through my hair. I felt sorry my tears had fallen down beside my head on her lap, but she didn’t seem to mind. Temple’s other hand held mine, stroking my palm with her thumb as I lay it on my shallowly breathing abdomen.

I took in a deep breath and it came in shakily. It felt good. Temple said nothing and I loved her all the better for it. For a moment I wanted to be silent as well, but in my mind thoughts screamed and scratched for release.

“Is it possible to be sure of myself?” I asked in a cracking tremor. “Am I destined to go through life, never quite certain of what I believe?” Temple’s humming had stopped, but I dared not look into her lovely melancholy face. I had yet to know what lay beyond. I was afraid to know, and perhaps she guessed it. Another tear escaped as I blinked. I yawned, breathing deeply again and feeling the emotional exhaustion pressing down on my heart. “Temple, who am I?”

When Temple finally answered, I could not detect emotion. “You are who you are on the outside, and who you are on the inside.” I almost asked her what she meant, except that after a moment’s pause she began again in her calm and calculated manner. “You are what you do – every little thing. And that is all influenced by what you think. You can think all you need to, but who you are is defined by what you end up doing. An ultimatum is an ultimatum. Once met and dealt with... there you are.”

I could not feel myself tremble any more, and finally dared to look up at Temple. I was met with a small smile that changed her whole face. She squeezed my hand and I squeezed back. I felt more tears coming as in the glassy blue of her eyes I knew I had finally found a sister.


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