Short Story Series: Come What May

Series: Come What May

A Month of Short Stories—Locked in, locked out, locked down. In four short stories released weekly, authors explore relationships born from, changed by, and discovered in isolation.

"Girl with a Pearl Earring" by Claire Rudy Foster

In 1992, Laura and Thea live together in a punk house in Washington, D.C. Thea, a brash and unapologetic trans girl, lives the punk life to its fullest. But Laura leaves her leather and safety pins at home each day when she leaves for work in a government job—hiding her anti-establishment lifestyle from her co-workers and her mainstream tastes from her housemates.

When she invites Thea with her to see a Vermeer exhibit, Laura finds the courage to open up to Thea while viewing her favorite painting. Thea—normally critical of mainstream art—is charmed by both the painting and by Laura.

"Billions of Beautiful Hearts" by Kevin Craig

Wen Devante is Insta famous with a massive following and a flare for fashion. At almost 18, they have already published a book on gender nonconformity, released several songs on Spotify and appeared on television. During the first wave of Covid-19 lockdown, they reach out to an unsuspecting Kay, one of their 2.3 million followers. The two form a bond, first through Instagram messages and then through Zoom. They discover there are ways to have a meaningful relationship despite the bleak circumstances. In fact, the pandemic seems to make reaching out even easier than it used to be.

"And Always Coming Back" by Jude Sierra

At first, David and Evan found a silver lining to quarantine in togetherness. But as the months wore on, the novelty wore off. At the seven-month marker, David broke down—but not because of what was happening outside. Recognizing that loneliness could wield power even when you’re not alone, David and Evan commit to rediscovering the silver that lines t ogetherness.

"Sunny Pastures" by Lilah Suzanne

When Frankie's glamorous big city life falls apart, the only place she has left to go is her grandmother's retirement village where she's charmed by her grandmother's friends, and a beautiful home health aide named Claire.