Cheyenne, Wyoming, 2017 — Bright blue eyes peered around the hall corner, scanning the living room and finally landed on the bookshelf.

Right next to it was the recliner, where Daddy was sleeping.

Red curls bouncing, four-year-old Natalie tiptoed into the sun-streaked room. She reached the bookshelf and quietly began taking books off in search of her little brother’s favorite one.

She was so engrossed in her search she didn’t hear the recliner creak behind her. A few seconds later, a pair of arms reached out and grabbed her, causing her to squeal.

“Ha hah!” Ethan said, swinging her onto his lap. “What are you doing, Nat?”

“Daddy, you were faking sleep!”

“Eh, maybe,” Ethan said. He tickled her and she burst into laughter. “So, what are you doing, huh?”

“I hafta get Caleb’s favorite book,” she said. “Mommy said he has to take a nap, but he can’t sleep without a story.”

“Oh, I see,” Ethan said.

Natalie held up the book. “Daddy, I remembered I can’t read.”

“So that means I have to, right?”

“Yeah, I guess. But I wanna learn!”

Ethan chuckled. “Okay,” he said, getting out of the recliner. “Let’s go read to Caleb and I’ll teach you a few words.”


© 2018 H.S. Kylian

(Critiques are welcome and appreciated!)

This post was last updated on December 7, 2018

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