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  • Writer's pictureDavid James Parr

The Thing with Annie / Episode 2: Brilliant

"On Saturday, he is gone. Ever since his mother died, Stanley goes once a week to visit his father at his farm in northern Ohio and stays overnight, leaving Mom and I behind. On Sundays, Mom usually prepares a pot roast or a honey ham for dinner, something special that requires hours of cooking, while I set the table with the good china. Good meaning the dishware she received as a wedding gift. These plates we use are trimmed with tiny rosebuds on green vines; the bowls have scooped edges, shaped like flower petals. When all is ready, Mom and I sit in the dining room—where we never normally eat—and wait for dusk. Wait for the rise of dust from the gravel in the driveway, the slam of the truck door, his body filling the doorway. “Smells like Sunday,” he will say, dropping his keys onto the table.

But on this Sunday, the oven is turned off. The table is empty. The good china is packed in a box. There will be nothing special waiting for Stanley when he comes home this evening. There will be nothing waiting at all."

Ronnie's story continues in

The Thing with Annie / Episode 2: Brilliant

Available now on Amazon - read full episodes for free

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