Mother mother likes to tell me about the day I arrived.

“So many babies make their entrance kicking and squalling, demanding attention, but not you, sweetheart. You were perfect from the start. You just opened those big blue eyes, blinked silently at the doctor, and smiled with all your teeth.”

At this point in the story, Mother always places her hand on my head, directly between the horns that began growing in when I hit puberty, and gives me a beatific smile.

“You are my little angel,” she says, every single time.

I honestly don’t know if she actually believes these stories she tells, these fairy tales she’s created around our lives, but she never wavers in her conviction.

Mother hefts great slabs of meat up from the cellar on one broad shoulder. “Must be a growth spurt coming on. Pretty soon you’ll be taller than me.” I never go to bed hungry.

At bath time, Mother squeezes the sponge, running warm water over the delicate webbing of my wings. “So pretty,” she says, holding my chin in one hand to look me in the eye. “I’m sure you didn’t get that from my side of the family. Must be in your father’s blood.”

Cold water splashes into the laundry tub. Mother scrubs at blood-stained clothing. “Don’t worry, baby. It happens. It will come right out.” She assures me that in time I will learn to avoid these accidents.

She’s extolled the gentle blessing of my virtues so often I’m half-convinced I’m the one who is confused.

*6/3/17 RRWG Speed Writing – from the prompt “innocence, trust, delusion”


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