Lin Page 20
When's that?

I don't know. I don't plan ahead very often.

Not even this time?

I'd rather not. I would risk disappointing you.

Disappointment is fine,
she laughs. One moment of disappointment after a long time of happy waiting? That's fair.

All right,
he says, rubbing his chin ruefully. Seven years from today?

Just about right,
she agrees, and she seizes his hand in an earthy grip. Until next time, Sun Man.

She walks off in the general direction of the children, her hips swaying ever so slightly. Watching her depart, he shakes his head, as if he has finished a storybook, the final cracking of the spine jolting him back to reality. The rock band in the square is bringing its latest song to a calamitous conclusion, and the sound of a final cymbal crash hangs in the air like distant thunder.

[To be concluded in the next issue of Caveat Lector.]

Ho Lin is co-editor of Caveat Lector. His current ambition is to play a rock concert on the Mongolian plains.