by Erin McKnight
Here’s the deal, God: you make sure he gets home safely, and I swear I’ll start looking after him the way an older brother should. Bunching one end of a towel, I dip it into the sink of cold water, and then hold it to my reddened eyes and nose. Just after nine he saunters by, his bobbing head reflected in the bathroom mirror. He smells of grass, mud crusts his earlobe, and the tuft of hair on the crown of his head stirs in the air vent’s breeze. He’s oblivious to the labored inhalations and clenched jaws he left suspended in his wake. I run into the hallway and shove my elbow into his shoulder - pinning him against the wall like an insect to a windshield - cursing his selfishness as spindly limbs writhe against my center of pressure.
6S - C1
Erin McKnight is currently at work on her MFA in fiction. Her writing has been widely published, and she teaches an online class in flash fiction.