claudette's tiny mouth hung open weezing in rhythm with the sound of her extra-wide feet scuffling across the convenience store floor. she gathered five cans of liver and bacon kitty food for the little ones and a bag of little for multiple cats. unable to carry it in her pudgy hands, swollen and peeling from her seasonal exzcema, she unloaded onto the check-out counter.
"ethcuse me, do you carry cream of tomatuh sthoup?"
the clerk was picking at her fingernails. she took one moment away from this imperative bodily grooming to look up at claudette, who still had her mouth open, her eyes fixed on the clerk waiting impatiently for the response.
"um i don't know. like you can look."
claudette pivoted on her puffy foot and scooted back down the aisle. she scanned the meager canned food section. cream of chicken, tomatuh, beef. no luck. she was upset and could feel frustration building behind her eyes. she stopped and remembered what dr. brander had advised for when her anger kicked in.
one. two. three. four. five. six. seven. eight. nine. ten.
her heart rate slowed. she gathered her big body and queued with the rest of the happy people of her town.