My shoulder hurt a lot after the second dose and the following morning I found a thorny vine had sprouted from beneath the Band-Aid. It clambered down my upper arm in an emerald coil. I drove back to the CVS in a hurry but the pharmacist insisted that this was less a medical issue and more a botanical one, so I stopped by the flower store across the street. “Water once daily and give it plenty of sun,” I was advised and indeed the vine flourished under this regimen. A few weeks later it blossomed into a hundred tiny flowers, each one a pale and haunted red just like the year had been.
Nikolaj Volgushev’s fiction has appeared in journals such as the Cafe Irreal, Cleaver Magazine, and Cease, Cows. He currently lives in Berlin, Germany where he writes, programs, and does other things along those lines. Before moving to Germany, Nikolaj lived in Denmark, and before that in New England, and before that in Germany. It is unclear where, if at all, Nikolaj lived before that.
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