The Cedarville Review 2021

9 | CEDARVILLE REVIEW have to forgive her if she didn’t. He had changed a lot in the last few decades; old age tends to mutilate the face. She seemed to have missed that memo though. She looked just like she had sixty years ago when she dated an eighteen-year-old Solomon. “I guess I’ve changed a bit since I last saw you,” Solomon muttered almost to himself, reaching up to awkwardly pat his bald head. He’d never gotten used to not having hair to run his hand through. “But you have to remember me? We were quite a fine couple back in the day.” Martin Anderson attempted to put himself between Marigold and Solomon while Jill’s hands flew up to her mouth and her eyes widened with shock, but Marigold stopped him and walked a few steps forward. Solomon smiled. He knew Marigold would recognize him. Marigold stared at him for a few moments, her mouth and eyes fidgeting as words couldn’t quite formulate properly. She finally said, “I’m sorry, Mr. Solomon, but I don’t believe we’ve met. How did you learn my name?” Solomon’s eyes narrowed as he studied her. She must have forgotten their time together. It was understandable. He’d wanted to forget the circumstances of her death as well. But that night was burned into his mind. It still woke him up at night. It had always been awkward to explain to Samantha why he woke up crying. How do you explain to your wife that you still dream about your old flame? He hadn’t had to worry about that for six years now. Damn cancer. But cancer wasn’t the point of this conversation. This was Marigold Tuppence and he was going to prove to her that they had met. Quickly. Jules would notice he wasn’t napping any moment now and he couldn’t have that supposed daughter of his interrupting important business. He took a deep breath and said, “Alright, alright. Your name is Marigold Serene Malinda Janine Tuppence. You’re named after your father’s four sisters, listed in order from his favorite to least favorite. When you were five, you told your mother you were ready to be a father. You always wear clothes with flowers on them, but never marigolds ’cause that’d be too obvious.” Martin’s face contorted into a mixture of confusion and amusement as if he knew that none of those things could possibly be true. But Marigold, Marigold knew. Solomon could tell as she studied him. She hadn’t quite put it together yet, but she knew him. She had to. “Where have we met, Mr. Solomon?” Marigold asked, much to the chagrin of Martin and concern of Jill. “We met… Well… That was a long time ago, wasn’t it.” Solomon stuttered a bit and hoped she understood. He was sure he remembered. The computer between his ears might run slow, but Solomon would die before he let anyone say it didn’t work. Suddenly, it popped back into his head. He pointed at her with more vigor than he knew he had and said, “I got it! We met right here!” “Right here?” Marigold looked around a bit, trying to find where exactly here was. Martin’s eyebrows flew straight up his forehead and his mouth moved up, scrunching his mustache. Solomon continued undeterred. “Yes, right here, in this parking lot. You were about to begin your job as a babysitter for--well you were gonna start babysitting at this house--and I saw you through the window and, well, I figured I should introduce myself. I was rather full of myself back then, absolutely no social skills, it’s a wonder you didn’t slap me.” Martin said something under his breath that involved the words “assaulting a geriatric” and