Breaking Curfew (and Other Short Stories)

by Kari Nguyen

Breaking Curfew

Softly she ascends the darkened stairwell, avoiding the moon, her boots leaking stardust and wine. She places her jewels on the bedside table, breathes goodnight.


View from a Bedroom Window

He hears her steps in the hallway, then the open and close of the front door. He goes to the bedroom window and peers between the crack in the curtains. She's stepping out, down the stairs, into street night.  A night for another, not him. He clutches his bear, alone.


Summer as Seven

Not knowing it would become the simplest, happiest memory of her life, Rebecca ran the length of the sunny dock and jumped off the end, bracing for deep, cool water. 


Duty of an Only Child

She found the photograph while cleaning out her mother's attic. They were carefully arranged: her father, mother, a child. It was dated 1943 - six years before she'd been born.


Long Distance

They send a puzzle, unable to make the trip back east. “Money's tight,” his son says. “Maybe next year.”

Harold sits at the table, studying the cover of the overturned box: a picture of Mark, Sheila, the kids. He rises, shuffling his feet through the pieces, trying not to fall.