Geraniums by Joanne Rush

‘Goodbye, mother. Don’t come out.’ My daughter pauses in the doorway, stooping down to press her powdered cheek against my cheek. Then she takes her own daughter’s hand, and walks off. Neither one of them looks back.

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The Vulture by Meg Gripton-Cooper

She can feel that Isabelle hasn’t shaved her armpits recently. This surprises her. The fuzz of it burns Kate’s hands as she drags Isabelle into the bathroom. It’s easier than expected. The hardest part is getting her over the side of the bathtub.

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The Volunteer by Francesca Lembregts

Ten years. Oscar and I have been as thick as thieves for ten years.
We were both young, fairly decent looking fellows when we first met, with sharp eyes and white teeth that were still all there. Don’t get me wrong, we’re not completely decrepit now, but time hasn’t been generous to us.

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Cold Patch by Sherry Morris

It always starts with something small. I’m in the kitchen, putting away the shopping, when a raspberry tumbles from its punnet. Rolls across the granite kitchen counter. Drops onto the parquet floor. A shiver travels up my spine.

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Stripes by Julie Hayman

He’s drawn a tiger in crayon. White paper shows through the orange and black stripes. The eyes are slanted and green, malevolent as poison ivy. Broccoli trees surround the tiger, and a sky-blue river meanders from one side of the page to the other.

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