“Other women before her have taken this burden—the weight of the whole town, the whole countryside—proclaiming loudly as they went that they demanded remembrance for their sacrifice. And perhaps that was the least recompense they deserved. Fiora didn’t have the mind to think so broadly, though, her shoulders too slim to carry something so heavy so far. But for a house. For a family. For a blackberry bush. She could give herself for those things.”

-from “May You Have Only Boys” part of A Cold Christmas and the Darkest of Winters (Nov 2021)