If Only a Word for All Things
by Jameyanne Fuller
I hunched my shoulders and leaned closer to the automatic ticket machine. I punched in the date and time with tense fingers, chose the train I wanted, and stuffed some crumpled Euros into the slot. At any moment a carabiniere would take one look at me, know I was somewhere I shouldn’t be, and march me right onto the train back to Assisi. But I wasn’t running away, not really. I was going to Paris to find Maman and bring her home. We needed her home. Her and her magic words.
The ticket machine thought, then spat out my ticket. I seized it.
“Do you know where to go, signorina?” a station guard asked at my shoulder. I jumped, but I reminded myself she was only trying to be helpful. As long as I didn’t give myself away, I would be fine.