Birth Order

by Chris Keefer

First Place winner of the Summer Drabble 2023 Competition: Adult Division

My older sister was caught pouting in one of my tenth birthday party pictures. I knew them, those hidden, jealous moods. They always came with a nasty comment or a vicious pinch no one saw. Our birth order was not my fault. I wore a pink pinafore that day. I smiled. I got presents. I blew out the candles. I got to stand tall on my double-digit day. I didn’t see her, lurking in the background, frowning with a depth of hatred that never subsided, until now. I would mourn her, but my little sister is hogging the funeral’s spotlight.

Chris Keefer writes the Carlisle news for the Times Journal newspaper, humorous rants, short fiction, and the Carrie Lisbon Series of historical mysteries, published by Level Best Books. Chris lives in Schoharie County.

a black and white image of a young white girl wearing a dress, standing with a knife behind a cake topped by burning candles