Things are going well on this side of the ocean. A novelty shop opened recently near where we live, and we had to check it out. They sell all sorts of curiosities.
You mentioned in your last letter that you were having trouble sleeping, so we bought these candles and sent them along to you. They're made with a special incense that's supposed to help you sleep more comfortably. The instructions say to put one in a candle holder in your room, light it before you go to bed, and let it burn while you sleep.
Maybe you'll come and visit us again sometime... willingly or not.
Suki says hi.
Your friend, Maki
Kane reread the letter he'd gotten from his Chinese penpal. Then he glanced at the still-unopened transparent plastic package of candles resting on the table. The label on the front was of course in Chinese, but bore a picture of an Asian long dragon sleeping contentedly in bed, snuggling up with a teddy be
"I don't know what you're so worked up about," Jewel said. She stared blankly at the fairly ordinary-looking storefront of "Cougar Clothes" for a moment before returning her gaze to her phone.
"Well, honey, this is one brand you can't buy online," said Michael. "I checked."
"Now this is getting even more bizarre," said Jewel. "You actually researched a women's clothing store? Why?"
"Um...just to make sure you could get a unique gift today," Michael said, trying his best to sound innocent.
"Whatever," his wife said. Jewel was clad simply in a T-shirt and jean shorts. She was never one to spend much effort on fashion. "I'll try some stuff on, I guess," she said blankly, and walked into the store.
"Welcome to Cougar Clothes. I'm Margo. How can I make your day perfect?" said the woman behind the counter, a middle-aged
It has often been said that the truth is most often hidden in plain sight. Nowhere else was this more true than the Wilma Candy Company. A cursory glance of Wilma might indeed have revealed the truth about her to anyone. She was an old woman, her features distorted by frizzy gray hair, a large nose, crooked teeth, bloodshot eyes, and bony fingers. She insisted in wearing only drab robes and strange hats. In short, she looked like a witch – which is exactly what she was.
Wilma slumped forward in chair, resting her elbows on her massive, solid marble desk. As the CEO of the Wilma Candy Company, she had money and power. Yet, her deepest cravings hadn’t been sated in quite some time. Like witches of old, Wilma longed to lure young people to their ruin through candy. And yet the circumstances of the modern world seemed stacked against her. Thanks to nationwide panic about sex offenders, kids were mortally afraid of accepting candy from strangers. The old ways were si