Broken Mirrors

There’s a story behind this story, albeit a short one. I asked friends for writing prompts; one of them responded with « fearnot » (possibly mistyped; I haven’t asked). On a whim, I googled the single word and discovered that there’s a little place in Pennsylvania called Fearnot. I began considering how I might combine that name with the biblical two-word version of the phrase. (P.S. – there’s a Bethlehem, PA, too.)

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“Fear not.”

I don’t look up from my magazine. I hear this a lot. “Yeah, weird name for a town, isn’t it?”

“No, not ‘Fearnot’—fear not. Hey. Mary.” He reaches out and taps his fingertips on the page I’m reading. “You might want to pay attention.”

It’s not like I haven’t dealt with my share of obnoxious customers in the years I’ve been working the family convenience store. What really gets to me is when they use your…

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