To describe the first days after he got his braces as dreadful was a gross understatement. The discomfort his dentist had cautioned him of turned out to be excruciating pain. He was constantly famished, but the bland, watery congee and foul-smelling soups prepared by his mother made him lose his appetite. He stopped talking to her, citing pain as pretext. Instead of spending time with his parents in the living room as he usually did, he retreated to his room, brooding.

Doobuck’s Room

“How much is she going to pay me?” Susan finally asked through gritted teeth, still staring at her dimeless four dollars.

“Why nothing! My word.” Mrs. Peck’s face turned red. “Mrs. Oliver is a personal friend of mine; one I am proud to count. It would be an insult to ask her for money. She’s in need and I promised to help her. Selfish girl. I already pay you four dollars a week. Look in your hands.”

The Search for Cowboy Broken Horse

If there’s one thing I know, it’s that going to Oklahoma is never a solution to my problems. If there’s a second thing I know, it’s that when I’m looking for a lost relative, I can probably find them at the casino, and I was looking for a lost relative I never had met. I hadn’t even known I had him until a few hours ago.

Nana Faye

“I’m sure she is, Nana. I bet she’s looking down on you right now.”
Nana Faye snorted. It was odd to see the prim point of her nose turn up in such a way.

“No, I don’t think she is. I hope she’s with Elvis now… And Jesus too, of course.”