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Current Issueissue 129Short Fiction

The Cure for Loneliness

I wish I could point to some spectacular origin story that set this in motion. A sudden total eclipse of the sun, bite from a radioactive aphid, a fairy who sprinkled magic dust on me and my houseplants, anything. Flashy problems must have flashy causes, right? But all I’ve got is that I took a cutting from a philodendron and stuck it in a jar of pickle juice instead of water. I knew this made no sense and would probably kill it, but what can I say? I did it anyway. Happy Plague Year.

Current Issueissue 129Short Fiction


On the first day of the second thaw after her mother’s death, Lamia’s father disappeared. The canoe, too. The place where it had been stored all winter—the shed behind the cabin—was empty. She and her brother went out looking for him until they reached the snowline on the mountain. They continued along the river below, seeking signs of his passage, exploring the paths and inquiring at neighboring cabins, but no one had seen him.