by R.S. Bohn
A skull that fits entirely in her palm, with the downiest hair. He gasps, a single indrawn breath. Almost louder than the footsteps in the hall. Almost.
The closet door closes, and she counts.
Six elephants sway above the crib. He glances at the window – still nailed shut.
Son in crook of arm, he opens the closet door. Dust and extra blankets.
Just in case, he nails it shut too.
A decade for him, hundreds for her; she’s been carefully avoiding this thread, but today… She pulls.
Rusted nails plink to the floor; the door creaks open:
He’s still perfect.
Author bio: R.S. Bohn officially has no comment on allegations that Stephen Cosgrove based his 1978 book, "Misty Morgan," the story of a princess and her unicorn, on her. She can definitively say, however, that Scholastic book fairs at her school were, without a doubt, the best days of the school year.
Closet is part of 101 Fiction issue 25.