Cookie: Shade’s Story


HA note: Shade Ardent blogs at The Unspared Rod. This story is reprinted with permission.

‘And don’t come back until you’re done crying.’

she slides around the door, face dripping with the remains of words and anger.

‘what do you have?’

‘it’s mine.’

wall behind me, holds my secrets. she and i, we look across the gap.

‘what do you have?’

she’s walking across the room. floor muffles all her steps, she’s so quiet. bird-sweet, she smiles. she is green-green with happiness now, all the sad is dried up under rainbow smiles.

‘i won’t tell. what do you have?’

and i believe. i believe the smile, and i believe the soft words.

chocolate smears my hands, and i show her – cookies.

‘those aren’t for you. give it to me.’


‘i will tell.’

before she can reach, i cram them into my mouth. they taste like soap now, chocolate and the soap that will come. mouth all full, we stare at each other.

smile’s all gone, she is thunder and ice.

i chew, chew, chew, and swallow. i want them to last, i want them to be mine. selfish, greedy, the chocolate is stronger than the soap taste.

i read in the dictionary a word, defiance.

i roll it around, chocolate and soap, d-e-f-i-a-n-c-e. warm crumbling cookies, and  mouthfilled with stubborn. the dictionary says ‘open resistance, bold disobedience’. today i’m tired, tired of being afraid, tired of obeying.

the cookie tastes like defiance.

‘i’m telling,’ she says.

she’s reaching across, and 10 little red moons rise. sharp and slicing, arms’ burning.

she smiles.

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