The Passed Note Issue 4 June 2017 - Page 25

easier when we can make a quick exit. Still… I like the hugsand kisses. It makes me feel like I have a mom.

“Yes, thanks for playing,” she said hesitantly. My mom is a meticulously polite woman, so even though she no longer remembered who we were, she smiled and shook each of our hands goodbye.

We left her on the patio, and were just headed back down the hall when I heard her calling after me.

“Miss? Miss!”

I turned back around. Mom was holding my sunglasses, which must have fallen out of the beach bag when I picked it up.

“I’ll meet you out front,” I told the twins, and ran back to grab them.

“Thanks, I need those,” I said fake-cheerfully. “You know, it’s supposed to get over a hundred tomorrow!”

“Well, stay cool,” she said, holding them out with a smile. “It’s really nice to see you get along so well with your brothers. You remind me so much of my own kids. I’ve got triplets, too. A girl and two boys. Of course, they’re much younger.”

I smiled as well as I could and reached for the glasses. I was doing my best to keep my eyes on the glasses to keep from completely losing it, but when I accidentally met her gaze, I felt like a million tiny pins had sunk painlessly into my brain. My body gave a sudden spasm, and I felt like I was being tipped over the edge of a cliff in slow motion. I kept falling forward without the sense that I was nearer to the bottom of… anything. I lost any sensation I had of my body, and was aware only of a palpable darkness speckled here and there with stars.