Flash Fiction: Paige Hoshino’s Dream Comes to Pass by Dale Stromberg

Photo by Li Lin on Unsplash

(Content warning: mention of death.)

Sean, last night I dreamt of you. In a Minit Munch parking lot at night, you touched my face and said, “I miss you too.” I guess I woke reluctantly. Typical midlife thing, I figured.

I hadn’t been a week into college when my sister called with the news. She’d known all about our first kiss at the reservoir. Maybe a decade after you died, I met Srinivasa at a company barbecue. We both pounded too many beers to think straight. Now our daughter’s raising her own baby single and won’t answer my texts.

Everything’s just like that dream. This is the parking lot I saw, and you look the same as ever. It’s eerie how easily I know this is real. Srini’s inside, paying for his cigarettes. You stare into my eyes, searching. I say, “I have to…” but can’t continue.

Dale Stromberg (he/him) is the author of Melancholic Parables (2022). He grew up not far from Sacramento before moving to Tokyo, where he had a brief music career. Now he lives near Kuala Lumpur and makes ends meet as an editor and translator. Find him at @StrombergLit

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