Alabaster Lafferty was a Van Dam, taught in the old grammar school that stood where the Saddlebag used to stand, caddycorner to where the Sno-Cone was. Rondorian courted her for nine years. His daddy Nicodemus married them. Octavia Burwell said Grandpa Nick would thunder against dancing from the pulpit. If you’re gonna dance, step out of the pulpit, she said he said, but I think that’s a tall tale. Her brother Truman played nose guard for the Stags until he got sidelined with a torn biceps. Didn’t make it back from the war. Octavia visits Alabaster in the rest home. She’s ninety-seven years old, and flirts with the male nurses like it’s going out of style. Some fires are never banked.
(Copyright 2018 James Mansfield Nichols. All rights reserved.)