Stutterers, by Carrie Cooperider

(F.F.F. Website Story)

People wouldn’t quit cutting ahead of me in the line for sleep, so I left, turning my back on the smug curvature of earth spooned into the night. A lunar-shaped cusp had tracked its cramped orbit around my wrist by the time my watch finally crash-landed on your bedside table. You struggled for words, slapping your thigh to spur your panicked tongue to form the requisite sounds. You managed “I”, and could have done “you”, but I knew you’d never get the “L” word in between, so I said it for both of us: I luh-luh-luh- lie to you, too.

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