I lay on the couch moaning my belly full of delicious rice noodles. I couldn’t move. I was stuffed. Where did I go wrong? I felt fine when I left the restaurant. Julie flipped through a magazine snapping her gum. She had finished her  whatever and finished my noodles. She could eat forever with no side effects.

“You know what I’m in the mood for right now?” She snapped her gum. It echoed through my living room. “Ice cream. We’ve got some at my house.”

I moaned again. She was killing me. “Don’t talk about food! I’m never eating again!” I lay down and closed my eyes. The pressure building in my intestines. Please stay down. Please stay down. I whispered my new mantra. “I’m not going anywhere! Stop talking. Listening is hard.” I tried to focus on my fingers and hands. They were starting to feel sweaty.

“Well, this is boring!” She slammed her magazine down.

I lay my hands down protectively over my  stomach as if needing to defend myself from her. She paced around irritated. “Sorry. I know you’re miserable! You’re so much better at empathy than I am.” She sighed again and fell into the coach and then picked up on of my mother’s Better Homes and Gardens. “I’ll be good for at least ten minutes. She set a timer on her phone. A phone that she hated because it was a ‘dumb’ phone instead of a ‘smart’ phone. I flipped my flip flops off and felt the cool air of the register against the souls of my feet. Amazing! It gave me hope that I might live the next 10 minutes.


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About the author

Carley Hibbert

I just finished writing my first novel The Villain's Assistant. I'm preparing to submit it to an interested publisher.

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