Alone, at Home
by Cheryl Chambers

Conchetta fretted. The bulbous pimple (pulsing, unbreakable) did not help distract her; no, just the opposite. She worried and fingered her blemish. Over and over again. Wondering what to do. About any and all of it.

Surely there would be time to work this out later, Conchetta mused. He had been gone for a while. That was certain. But there must be a reasonable explanation. Sleep might help her reach that answer sooner.

Conchetta stumbled over socks, panties, and a large brown shoe left on the bathroom floor. “Damn!” She glared at the floor, white tiles peering through fabric. “Only I can stub my toe on cotton.” She looked up, stunned, at her head reflected off the window, saw the shape of who she was but not the colors, and played the game of a different life. What if the hastily upturned hair had actually been styled in New York, Milan, Paris? What if she were preparing to attend an opera, home, in Venice?

She cleared her throat.


And turned left to face the mirror, seeing what was truly the a shapely, middle-aged woman, dark hair graying and sprinkled with the yellowish brown hue of the weathered and worn, short hairs teasing her lips, darkening her smile. Conchetta applied the mask to her face, cucumber, and listened for the tinkle of front door bells, or keys clanking against wood, or a voice to let her know he was home.

Cheryl is a writer and teacher living in Buffalo, N.Y.  Her fiction has appeared in print at Gator Springs Gazette and online at Yankee Pot Roast, All Things Girl, and others. Her non-fiction can be found online at Moondance.    Contact Cheryl.