Sometimes Sarah and Emily remind me of Dil. Though she was not like them. There was something unique about Dil. Were I to meet her now, would events take a different course then they did? Could she have been like them?

I had not thought about Dil for years, yet her memory still burns bright and sharp, almost as if she were my own daughter.

Often when I ask women how many children they have had, they say something like, "Five. Three living, two dead," or "Six. Five living, one dead." So I myself have four. Three living, one dead.


Yellow Stephen

It was the uncertainty that tormented Jack: having no knowledge of how long Stephen could stay in the second stadium and being unable to tell, without Smith and Macauly's aid, just how grim things were. Though he knew they had to be grim enough.

Jack knew some of the crew thought he would catch it for sure, being around Stephen so much. Sometimes he thought it possible he might, despite everything he did know. He never cared.

He wondered if Stephen could hear him. It seemed like he could sometimes. Could Stephen heed Jack's pleas for him not to die?