If I am repaired, can we meet again for the first time, in all of the places I have feared to go, and then, again, in all of the places I will have forgotten, if I am repaired?



Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Magpie Tales 62, 'The Guest Twin'

Meg first slept in the guest bedroom when Rocky came home sans left leg. It made better sense then for Rocky to convalesce in the marital Sleep Number California Queen. He consumed most of any bed: his three remaining limbs spread wide to displace his weight or, possibly, to achieve some sort of buoyancy that might lift his needled hide from the sheets. Meg had even thought (then), that Rocky deserved the better bed, ‘for all that he had been through’. Of course there was also the fear of bumping the raucous stump.

     Meg’s opinion however, of what Rocky had ‘been through’, changed dramatically by the time the prosthetic had arrived. His morphine induced prattle leaching through the baby monitor Meg had purchased and placed on the nightstand beside the Guest Twin, ‘for emergencies’, had kept her awake for nearly two weeks, giving her plenty of time to re-evaluate Rocky's state.

     Meg’s sleep deprived mind made no attempt to gloss the truth: Stupidity had cost Rocky his leg. Rocky's mother and brother both lost limbs (and subsequently their lives), to diabetes. He knew full well how to avoid the same fate and had ignored everything the doctors instructed, choosing instead to pray and expect a miracle.

     Meg brought Rocky his breakfast in bed until he was able to crutch himself to the table, the blank in his pajama bottoms sewn up and out of the way. She watched him eat eggs over-easy and spread the jam on his white bread toast that he refused to go without; spoon pure sugar into his coffee. He needed a couple vices, he told her.

     It was at the breakfast table that Meg began to notice Rocky’s eccentricities, the odd smackings and grindings that had never made her skin crawl before. It was at the breakfast table, too, after hobbling out on his titanium replacement, that Rocky had asked her when she was coming back to the Sleep Number.

     Meg was kind enough to tell Rocky that she had come to enjoy the Guest Twin, the smallness of the bedroom. In truth though, Meg saw Rocky with the remainder of his extremities shed, one for each dollop of jam he ate on his white bread toast. He was a freak, an ignorant pink lump. She could never sleep beside him again.

     A week later, Meg boxed up Rocky’s left shoes and took them to the Diabetes Center. She learned with the donation that not everyone lost limbs to diabetes because of ignorance, like her husband had. She had begun to think that, begun to put all diabetic amputees into Rocky's shoes. Rocky's shoe. The knowledge helped. Some. Though nothing would stop her from picking away at what remained of Rocky, until finally, he vanished entirely and Meg slept like a baby in the Guest Twin.


  1. oooh very well done
    I liked the unpredictable enemy (not a war amp)

  2. Wow! Cautionary Magpie for sure! Well written too.

  3. I loved this. Every single dollop.

  4. I stepped back in amazement. Incredible!

  5. Incredible! Sent a chill down my spine - hope Rocky will change his ways!

    Anna :o]

  6. Dire warding to all diabetics here...

  7. One of the best Magpie Tales I've read here. Timely, excellent, perfect.

    If you're ever looking for another venue to publish this kind of writing, I publish it on Microstory A Week.

    If not, that's fine, too, as I constantly enjoy your work. =)

  8. *blink*

    *blink blink*

    You horrify me. In a great way.


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