Pat shot out of his chair when Conner finally came home. The boy’s clothes were crusted in brown grime and he was breathing with heavy excitement.
“Where you been, boy? Gone for four days without a
word!” Pat said, pulling him inside. Conner followed his old man’s lead
to the kitchen with such a smile that Pat could barely bear it.
“You look devastated. Like you found Jesus.”
he missing, too?” The boy sucked in air in little bursts, like reverse
laughter. “I just spent days finding the devil. You’d have been so
He reversed-laughed some more and bent towards the
sink. When the water ran over his hands the brown turned a little red
and circled the drain. Pat’s eyes widened at the change of color.
“You did what, boy?”
beamed at him from over his shoulder, scrubbing his hands with lava
soap. “Finally cornered him at the dump. His tail stuck in an old box
spring, and he’d dropped his pitchfork.”
“Boy?” Pat moved nearer to the door. “Boy, what did you do?”
Smoke began to rise from the sink.