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Today's Story by Caitlin Myer

I had to see him.

Serialization Sunday: hoodoo – Chapter 45

Every Sunday, Fiction365 presents a new chapter in a previously unpublished novel.  Our first serialized novel, the taut thriller City of Human Remainscan be found in full here

Our current novel, Hoodoo, tells a story of visionaries, heretics and lunatics in Utah, centered on the life of Alice Lott, a twelve-year-old girl  who believes that God wants her to have an affair with her junior high school counselor. 

Find earlier chapters in Hoodoo here.

Chapter 45


Bobby’s voice, clear as day, right next to my ear. I opened my eyes, blinked them against the dark, then heaved myself over to check the time.

4:23 am. The numbers glowed red in the darkness.

My sleep had been shallow for the last few weeks. It was almost impossible to find a comfortable position with this swollen pod attached to me, and my body seemed to think it had to stay at a high level of alert all the time; more so the closer I got to my due date.

The baby was asleep. I should have been, too. I let my eyes close.


How long had I been sleeping? I checked the clock. 4:25. His voice was so close. I sat up, propping myself against a stack of pillows. I was all the way awake now, every inch of skin, every brain cell. The baby moved inside me. I seemed to hear something, another person pushing air around the room. I held my breath.

I could almost smell him. Bobby. He’d called me from sleep, and now he was here. I wanted to ask him what he was up to, but I was afraid he would dissolve; disappear. He was calling me.

I had to see him. I got out of bed and flipped on the light. The room was empty, but I felt traces of him, like marks of fingernails pressed into skin, fading quickly. Maybe I was just having crazy pregnant lady thoughts. I had to know, I had to find a way to see him. I sat in my room and watched the sky pale. I remembered part of the return address on his letters: he lived on Q Street. I could go there now. I got dressed and found a map of Salt Lake in the kitchen drawer. It was just before 7 o’clock on a Sunday morning when I hoisted my bulk into the seat of the Olds and drove alone to Salt Lake City.

Q Street was only four blocks long, bordered by South Temple on one side and the cemetery on the other. It didn’t take long to find the old Chevette, around back of the only apartment building on the street, next to the Dumpster. I parked out on the street and turned the car off, listening to the engine tick and ping as it cooled. I walked around back of the building, past the Dumpster, and lifted my fist to knock on the door of number 2.

I remembered knocking on Bobby’s office door at Laban Junior High. I looked up to see the first rays of sun shoot free of the mountain, casting shadows across the valley. The sky shivered. I closed my eyes and listened to the sound of a single car roaring down the road far away. Maybe I was losing it. Maybe I should turn around now and go home. I let my knuckles fall softly against the door and waited. Nothing. I lifted my head, breathed in morning air and knocked for real. There was movement inside, and I took a half step back before he opened the door.

His hair was sticking up like damp feathers, a pair of jeans pulled on fast, fly open, boxers sticking out, a wrinkled t-shirt. He smelled sour and yeasty, like he hadn’t showered in a week. He was familiar as my own sweat. The baby flopped over and I let out my breath.


Founder of the Portuguese Artists Colony in San Francisco, Caitlin Myer regularly reads her work at Why There Are Words, Quiet Lightning, and other established reading salons in California.  Her one woman show on Simone de Beauvoir was produced in Seattle. 

Read more stories by Caitlin Myer


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