Bill Diamond

Pregnant Pause

The investigations into the suspicious deaths of her infant children had ended. Nonetheless, Lorona still had to hide in public. Few people notice a produce clerk in a grocery store. Especially not one who is reticent wears vanilla clothes and averts her telltale eyes. Customers are focused on the critical choice between McIntosh or Fuji apples. Even the store just wants someone who will reliably show up and invisibly unpack the fruits and vegetables. These stockers are part of the covert cadre of people who make our world function. They are essential but barely register on the eddy of people flowing around them. Lorona was pleased she was less conspicuous than the lettuce or potatoes.

The job was ideal for someone who wants to disappear. Lorona had been famous, make that infamous. Her unexceptional face was a ubiquitous, but passing, flash on the news and the tabloid crime shows. She’d never been indicted by a court of law, but, many convicted her in the court of public opinion.

She was comfortably anonymous again and felt safe in her hidden life and monochrome disguise. On the surface, she appeared as normal and innocuous as everyone else. That was important for her compulsion. As she stacked the carrots, Lorona patted her pregnant belly.


Bill Diamond is a writer living in Evergreen, Colorado whose initial work has appeared in The MacGuffin, Eastern Iowa Review, Windmill and other journals.

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