(My Hero’s Blog Hop post is here.)
If you’re observing Tisha B’Av, may you have an easy and meaningful fast!
This week’s Six Sentence Sunday comes again from a work tentatively titled Newark Love Story, one of a number of story collections I originally wrote as ongoing subplots for my Atlantic City books and recently decided to expand into full novels in their own right, since they were all getting so long and involved.
Only a few days into 1952 and moving to Newark, 22-year-old Jozef Roblensky has run into a beautiful Serbian woman two years his senior and offered to help her with carrying her groceries home. She’s accepted, and they’ve exchanged smalltalk about their families and themselves on the way there. Svetlana finds a note from her mother, saying the other members of the household have gone to visit her oldest sister’s family. She says Jozef can hang up his coat and help with putting the groceries away, but Jozef suddenly has second thoughts when Svetlana sees the permanent reminder of his recent past.
Jozef stood on a chair to put some jars of dried goods on the top shelf as Svetlana got something out of the cabinet next to it. He didn’t realize his sleeves had slipped down until he saw her staring at his left arm. There it was, that ugly string of numbers he’d been branded with a month before his fourteenth birthday. Just as eagerly as he’d agreed to help her with putting the groceries away, he jumped off the chair and went to grab his coat.
“I’m sorry, but I must be going. Besides, you don’t want your mother to find you with a strange man in the house.”