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Lovely, fearful symmetry theric jepson “No, no, Janice. Not at all. I’ll keep her right by Perry.” Janice handed Dom her oversized glass bowl and he carefully carried it across the room to his Ikea dresser, lacquered black and stenciled in gold by an old boyfriend, and placed it carefully on a small circular quilt he’d made from his grandmother’s famous orange muumuu. The water sloshed back and forth a bit but nothing splashed out. The goldfish, a large brilliantly red specimen, moved slightly up and down in the waves and seemed to stare at him directly. Dom blew it a kiss, then blew a second kiss to Janice. She switched from the sucking-on-a-quince face he thought she’d finally abandoned to a small smile. Dom bent his head in acknowledgement then tripped back and took her into his arms. They touched only at the shoulders and Dom’s right knee bent his foot into the air. Janice kissed his cheek. “I’ll miss you both so much.” “Oh, please tell me I’m better company than your fish!” Janice laughed at his pouty face. “Of course, Dom. Don’t be silly. But if it weren’t for Saffy—” She bit her lip, stretching out the new scar across her philtrum, and held onto his biceps. “Listen. Dom. I haven’t told you because of—what happened before. And you’ll think I’m silly, but if it weren’t for Saffy—! I wouldn’t be going to Paris with Theo today. So just—just be careful what you think around her the next six weeks, okay?” “Janice! You’re scaring me!” She laughed and pushed her single strand of pink hair back into place among her natural brunette. “Forget it. Just—remember what I said.” Now Dom laughed. “I always forget what I remember! It’s why I’m such a good gossip!” Janice smiled, double-kissed his cheeks and slipped out. Dom watched her through the keyhole as she

Surreal Grotesque, Issue Two

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