Smoke and Memories

Somewhere in the brush something small and likely defenseless rustled the August leaves. Ken just sat on the lawn chair and took another drag of his cigarette. He eyed the thing with mild disdain but couldn’t bring himself to put it down. He’d forgotten an ashtray anyway.

So many things can be forgotten—what you had for breakfast on Tuesday, your first slow dance, or your mom’s birthday. That’s why Ken liked his tattoos, unforgettable and undeniable. With an ash-filled sigh he collapsed back into the weak back of the plastic chair. He wanted to forget and wished Cullen would get back with the beer so he could.

With lazy eyes he watched the treeline, 20 feet out from the deck he and Stewart had put up last summer. He imagined he could see the little thing scurrying around, making all that racket. He’d shoot it. No, he wouldn’t. He’d shot enough things, and where had that got him?

“Ken?” came a voice slowing rounding the corner of modest home. It wasn’t Cullen. It wasn’t a memory either.

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