“Sleeping Naked”: a snippet

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Image courtesy of Pixabay (noskill1343)

Banner day: I’m responding for the first time to the Daily Prompt. Today’s is “snippet.”

So, there you go. Nope, not even a snippet of nudity.

What follows is a snippet of a short story of mine, my first published short story, which appeared in Carve Magazine many moons ago. (So very early aughts–even the second-person point of view.)

It’s funny to look back on a story I wrote while I was still in graduate school, before marriage, before kids, before the first germ of yearning to indicate I might want kids (and the responsibilities that include, often, sleeping clothed and ready as an EMT for the next cry or summons from your progeny).

The protagonist in this story–she is no heroine–is in a stage of life I didn’t know when writing this piece. (I’ve discussed before my penchant for writerly distance.) She has been married; she is the mother of a pre-teen named Cheryl; she has seen her body and spirit morph to become “mother.”

Until, one day, she arrives home to find that her daughter is gone.

And so, a snippet from “Sleeping Naked” by Rebecca Moon Ruark:

You never thought to make a deal that required her to be in the house by eleven, to be home from her friend Julie’s or your sister Judy’s place down the street. You’re surprised she’s not there. She’s always in the living room, six inches away from the television screen, which casts a blue hue onto her face, when you pull into the drive around ten-thirty after your shift at Lubrizol. Tonight you stopped at the Claridon Tavern before returning to your two-bedroom split-level in the allotments. You had two glasses of Chardonnay, and after, you left your old rusted-out Mustang parked on the street before walking the five blocks home. You were smart not to take any chances and drive it, you think, as you rest your head on the doorjamb. Ever since you dumped the town’s deputy officer, Steve, he’s been eager to land you in the holding cell for something, anything. Read more