by Michael D. Brown

Cassandra and Arthur Fulman argued all the time; the problem being Cassie’s projecting her own guilt onto Art, telling him he was always predicting negative and dire outcomes. She did not appreciate his spending entire nights cruising the Internet, stockpiling digital copies of the world’s classic literature, amassing tens of gigabytes of music files, photographs, and scanned sketches when she wanted to sit and have conversation after working all day in the hospital’s administration office. For months after he had suffered his fatal heart attack, she couldn’t turn on the computer at home without some reminder of Art, even after changing his wallpaper, and dumping his file links in an app folder and hiding it in another location. Then, to celebrate the anniversary of his passing, she cleaned house, deleting all the e-texts, erasing massive amounts of digital photos and songs, obliterating every electronic reminder of the former thorn in her side, and finally she began to feel free of his presence in her life. She called up old girlfriends she hadn’t seen in years, and went to lunch with some of them, bought some new clothes in a larger size, and even began eating chocolate again. However, Cassandra was willing to admit to herself something bad was in the wind when she opened her e-mail client at work a week later and read, in Arthur’s handwriting, a note saying, Hey, where's all my stuff - cannot find anything over here.


Michael D. Brown writes whenever he can, laboring on his magnum opus: Any Day Now.