The Lie Misses You
by John Wiswell
The Lie can’t wait to see her sister again. Every night she draws another picture of the two of them together, sometimes in space, sometimes playing baseball, always in crayon, always looking shoddy like the work of her father’s left hand. But The Lie is recovering from the Contact Plague, and it affects motor functions in survivors. Her parents bring this up every time her sister calls.
She’s calling tonight, not that it’s night where her sister is stationed. The Mothership Nebraska is fighting in a place with three suns, so it’s probably always morning there. The Lie doodles a yellow crayon triple-morning while Mom and Dad squeeze together around the laptop. They try not to stare at it, pretending that cleaning their reading glasses and mending socks are just what they meant to be doing an hour after the time Vi was supposed to call.
To The Lie, that is what they meant to do. Her parents are so practical.