“Day One,” by Ashlee Crews
Appeared in Ploughshares Summer 2018, guest-edited by Jill McCorkle
A few thousand words
This is really good. The slow reveal of who Charles is and what he did is riveting, and Mavis’s cognitive dissonance, as her doctor calls it, is very believable. It’s for the best that we never find out the whole of what happened that night—the details would inevitably be lurid, sensationalistic, irrelevant.
I’m not sure what the title means. I say that a lot; titles often perplex me. This isn’t day one of Charles’ sentence, is it?