Remember the Massacre!

They have just finished the spiritual thought in ward council. The man looks down at the agenda, then up at the group in front of him. He’s about to ask Rachel, the Relief Society president, to discuss her organization when Katie, the Primary president, says, “Have you all watched the PBS documentaries on the Church?”Continue reading “Remember the Massacre!”

You Got Skunked!

Lucia is almost four and Lindsay is eighteen months. All winter, the scent of skunk has lingered around their yard, and they can’t make out where it is coming from. It is a warm spring day. The girls are in the backyard while Grant is at a summer school activity. Lucia bolts inside and cries,Continue reading “You Got Skunked!”

A Lot of Time to Think

The man shows up to the Massachusetts Treatment Center in a white shirt and tie. “Treatment Center” is a misnomer in most people’s minds–this is a medium security prison for sex offenders. The man is here because a stake president from the North Shore has told him of a resident named TG who grew upContinue reading “A Lot of Time to Think”

The Last Room in Town

When Lauren worked for BYU’s records office, she made fifteen thousand per year . . . after her first raise. The man worked two jobs in the summer and one job during the fall and winter semesters. They lived in married-student housing, and they scrimped by, saving about fifteen hundred dollars over a year andContinue reading “The Last Room in Town”

The Beautiful Game

Soccer is simple for kids, right? Kick the ball into the other team’s goal and stop them from kicking it into yours. So they sign Grant up for soccer at age five. Grant has always been big, and he appears to be seven years old and playing with runts. Which would be to his advantageContinue reading “The Beautiful Game”

I Want You to Be Honest about Something

The man has three distinct scenes in mind before this conversation with Lucia. At age eight, she hit her five-year mark with the local dance company, which meant that she was to receive a five-year award at the spring dance recital. They issued these awards partway through the recital. Each kid’s name was called, andContinue reading “I Want You to Be Honest about Something”

Wicked-Old Boomers

For years, Graham has watched Minecraft videos on YouTube, particularly by Stampie, who has etched out a following in the millions. Graham is eleven now and has begun experimenting with his own content on YouTube. Lauren and the man are working together on dinner in the kitchen. Graham comes in and announces, “There’s a guyContinue reading “Wicked-Old Boomers”

Hostage Rescue

The man’s oldest son has turned twelve, and today is his birthday party. Their new house has more than one hundred acres of woods behind them. They have allowed him to invite a bunch of friends for a party, and Lauren has turned over the activities to the man while she handles food. “Don’t worry,”Continue reading “Hostage Rescue”