Thursday, September 3, 2015

Lunar eclipses were rare and seeped in magic. Though Diana herself wasn't deeply involved in the stuff like some people on this block were, it still correlated with her divination and spirituality, so she decided to drag herself out to at least take a look at it.

She's still in her nightdress by the time she comes outside and lights a cigarette.



"Oh, right."

Diana is too busy looking at the sky to get a good look at the passerby, but as she finally pulls her eyes away from the currently uneventful sky, she manages to get a look at the person before they disappear around the corner.

She had seen them around the past few days, entering and exiting the apartment a few doors down. She suspects that they had just moved in, because before then she hadn't ever seen them. Maybe she should bring cookies tomorrow to welcome them to the building.


She wakes again to the shrill ring of a phone. The sky outside was a deep blue- the shade it turns just before dawn. It was early, far to early for someone to be calling her. She groggily reached for her phone, and glanced at the dimly illuminated screen on the outside of her old-fashioned flip phone.

6:07 am
Incoming Call
Unknown Caller

Diana rubs her sleep-ridden eyes and exhales loudly. It was most likely a telephone marketing scheme of some sort. Certainly not something she'd like to waste her time on at six o'clock, especially when she could be sleeping.

Pick it up, pick it up, pick it up, a voice seemed to be saying to her in the very back of her conscious. Pick it up, or you'll regret it. She flipped the phone open, giving in to her curiosity, and placing the device to her ear.

"Hello?" Her dazed tiredness is audible in her voice.

"Hi, sorry to be calling so early. Is this Diana Donati?" The voice on the other end of the line was deep and melodious. It was oddly familiar, and Diana could feel a chill running down the back of her neck.

"Speaking. Can I help you?"

"Uh, yeah, um, hi mom. This is Eleanor." A wave of confusion, excitement, and fear washes over her at the sound of the name. Eleanor.

"Hi, baby." Diana's voice is shaking just a little as she says this. She can't bring herself to say anymore. Bile rises in her throat, and tears prick her eyes. She doesn't even recognize her own daughters voice. Guilt twists in the pit of her belly. It had been at least 10 years since she had heard it last, and then it was still the piping voice of a child.

"I just got off the plane- I'm in the area. I was wondering if you'd like to, uh, get a coffee or something today? Talk? I'm really sorry about the short notice I-"

"Of course, yes, of course." Diana interrupts the young woman.


Diana wanders about the crowded festival in the early morning sun. It was her day off, but she can't bring herself to think about dogs. Or balloons. Or music. All she could think about was Eleanor. Eleanor, Eleanor, Eleanor.

She bends down to pet a particularly small and scruffy dog. It looks like the one that she got Eleanor for her sixth birthday. His name was Franco. Her chest tightens.


Diana left the coffee shop that evening in a daze. She was so grown, so old, and Diana wasn't there for most of the growing up.

She's married. She's an editor for her local newspaper. She has a son (His name is Kyle. He's three years old in June.) Her husband fixes people's roofs. She owns her own house. She volunteers at the local dog shelter.

All this information was bumping around in Diana's head, and she had no idea what to do with it.

She's shaking all the way home, and when she finally enters her apartment, she can't stop the mascara-stained tears from dribbling down her cheeks.