“It’s Jim.”

“I almost didn’t pick up. What’s this number?”

“Pay phone.”

“I didn’t know they still had those.”

“It’s at a rest stop on I-35. Lost my cell phone. Long story.”

“I bet.”

“So what’s happening? You at the hospital?”

“No. Not anymore.”


“Yeah, brother. You missed it. You’re too late.”


“This morning. The nurse found him.”

“Found him? Aren’t they supposed to know right away?”

“Mom gave the DNR order last night.”


“Do not resuscitate.”


“Would have been nice if his son had been there.”

“I’ve been driving all night.”

“I bet.”


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    • J Hardy Carroll

      Thanks! Every so often I try to do something that’s all dialog. I tried to give the reader a sense of the relationship of these two characters and the history between them. Tough to do without telling. I’m glad you like it.

  1. Joy Pixley

    Those two “I bet”‘s say so much about her opinion of her brother, and his past behavior. All you needed was the dialogue, too (which can be hard to pull off, I know). Expertly done.

  2. Varad

    Beautiful! Jim might have been untrustworthy before, but I get the feeling he has turned a new leaf or at least wants to. Not that his sister feels the same way. Powerful dialogues – the two ‘I bet’s really captures the mood here. Expertly done, JHC. Cheers, Varad

  3. Sarah Ann

    Difficult to ‘like’ this one. These siblings clearly have the same problem. Great use of dialogue telling the immediate story and of their relationship.

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