You don’t feel her hand. You don’t feel hot. You reach into your pocket and there’s no money. The sky is clear, no smoke, no flames. You look around. You’re just a few blocks from your house. Time to go home.
On the next block you see a young woman standing next to a power pole. You approach her and see what she’s doing.
She’s posting a picture of her cat. You’ve seen this before. There are lots of coyotes in the canyons. She looks sad. You feel bad for her.
You also feel a bit ashamed but you’re not quite sure why. There’s warm breeze, summer is coming. You’ll go home and make a gin and tonic. Your wife loves gin and tonics. That’ll be just the thing to cheer you up.
Maybe you’ll invite the AirBnB family to join you. After all, they looked like nice people.
Francois Bereaud is a husband, dad, full time math professor, mentor in the San Diego Congolese refugee community, mountain biker, and mediocre hockey player. His stories and essays have been published online and in print. The Counter Pharma-Terrorist & The Rebound Queen is his published chapbook and the realization of a dream. You can find links to his writing at francoisbereaud.com. He tweets stuff @FBereaud.
Chantal Lucas-Bereaud is a 9th grader at the San Diego School of Performing and Creative Arts where she is majoring in digital media arts. As a middle schooler, she had photographs published in different venues. These photographs were taken around her San Diego neighborhood. Her hair color may vary.