Victoria’s Death

The doctor’s remedy of milk laced with strychnine remained untouched on a small table in the bedroom. A clean strip of cloth looped around Victoria’s head, securing the jaw closed. Two cabbage leaves still covered her breasts, the country remedy for drying up mother’s milk. Victoria’s ivory skin was dull and wax-like.

Every good thing that had happened to Nazaire came after he met Victoria. It’s not that she was good luck or that she was good for him, it’s that all the goodness in the world came to him through her, with her. This goodness that was her, it was love, and it was gone from his life. The children were gone, and something had to change or the farm, his land would also be gone.

Inside Nazaire’s stomach, a tight knot throbbed. His shoulders relaxed, he took in a shallow breath and felt the smallest hope that tomorrow might be better.


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