Emily Grandy

Follow the Killdeer

The dead boy’s father sat across from Jayme in an upholstered chair, elbows against his knees. Shattered, she thought. That’s how he looked. Jayme waited for him to speak, thinking she should’ve worn something more formal, something other than the ripped jeans and leather jacket in which she was often photographed.

“Good of you to drive back for…you know, the funeral,” he said.

“I flew,” she explained, which was true, but not the correct response. “If I’d known…” she tried again but stopped because maybe she should have known. She and this man’s son, Marcus, they had always considered themselves artists, sensitive spirits with eccentric interests. It had seemed only natural, then, to dive down into the pits of despair from time to time to probe those curious depths. The playacting had led to experimentation, not only in artistic forms but a