The Cedarville Review 2021

Solomon Trent ran across his porch, past the truck he wasn’t allowed to drive anymore, past the flower garden he no longer had the strength to weed, across the street he had walked, biked, and jogged across all his miserably long life, with more vigor than he had felt in years. Unfortunately for him, this vigor couldn’t change the weakness in his bones, the soreness in his joints, or the heaviness in his back. He felt like a cheetah, dashing across the asphalt plains, even if his neighbors saw a lopsided penguin, waddling across the street. “Marigold Tuppence!” Solomon attempted to yell as his vocal folds stretched and groaned. The woman he was yelling at turned from her original task of shaking the hands of Martin and Jill Anderson, whose house she was about to enter. She seemed to be in her early twenties and wore a sky-blue dress with sunflower patterns that somehow matched the yellow of her hair. It had been so many years, and she hadn’t even changed her wardrobe. She looked at Solomon with shocked curiosity, her ears ready to listen and her eyes ready to judge, like she always did. The husband and wife pair in front of her didn’t respond so openly. They were all judge and no listen. Solomon was used to that. Solomon expected the Andersons to disapprove of anything he did. He expected the whole neighborhood to disapprove of him; the feeling was mutual. But Marigold was different; she would listen to him. “Marigold Tuppence!” Solomon rasped again. “I’m sorry,” the woman said. “Do I know you?” “It’s me, Solomon,” he wheezed out as he stopped about a yard away from her on the Andersons’ driveway. The woman stared at him with a critical gaze. She had to recognize him. Well, he would MARIGOLD TUPPENCE EVAN ELLIS