Today's Story by James Vachowski

He wears those sneakers. I never hear him coming.

The Gumshoe

Do you ever get the feeling that you’re secretly watching someone?

Lulu over there. Wheelchair, blue hair. Gums her pills behind her dentures and pretends to swallow. Spits them out when no one’s looking. Buries them in her applesauce.

Gerald, over at the card table—the shifty one. Took McGuffy’s reading glasses, I suspect. Just need the proof.

But Murray…he wears those sneakers. I never hear him coming. Gumshoes, they used to call them–back when I wore them.

He takes me by the arm and we walk out of the room. A shake of his head as we pass the nurse. It’s the young girl, the one with the pouty lips.

“Alzheimer’s” he whispers to her. “It’s so sad…”


James Vachowski’s short stories have appeared in Everyday Weirdness, Golden Visions, Wanderings, Bewildering Stories, The Evertalis and Larks Fiction magazines. His first two books were released in 2011 through Vagabondage Press and Solstice Publishing. Learn more at


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