The Storylet Experiment: Part 2

After ascending the stairs at a brisk pace, Lily stalked through the open door of her brother’s bedroom.

“You skipped yet another meal, didn’t you Oren?” She tried to cross her arms over her chest, remembered she was still holding a bag full of pot pies, and settled instead for a glower.

Oren turned away from the grimy window and upon seeing his face, Lily couldn’t help but falter a little. The circles around his brown eyes were darker than usual and his already pale skin had such a pallor to it that he appeared drained of all blood. He looked at her dully, the very personification of weariness.

“I was too tired,” he muttered before breaking into a coughing fit, grabbing weakly for the tissue on the nightstand. Lily leapt forward to aid him, grasping his shoulder in a helpless manner until the fit subsided.

“I know it can be difficult, but not eating will only make you weaker.” She softened the edge of this much-repeated lecture with real concern.

“So what?” Oren rasped as he lay back on the bed, staring once again out the window.

Had he said this any other day, she would have repeated her years-old mantra of never giving up hope. But on this day, she did not have it in her.

“Let’s eat our pies, shall we?”

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