A Good Mo­lar Is Hard to Find

Room Magazine - - CONTENTS - KATIE McGARRY

Molly’s brother sets her up on a date with his chi­ropodist. He’s been wor­ried about her since the di­vorce.

“Don’t bring any . . . spec­i­mens with you,” he warns. Molly agrees but tucks her cur­rent favourite (Steve) into her pocket.

She usu­ally car­ries at least one to keep her com­pany; on hard days, she wears a whole mouth’s worth in a small bag around her neck. The clink­ing sound makes her feel less numb. She spends hours each week re­ar­rang­ing the dis­plays around her apart­ment, pos­ing her me­men­tos in pos­si­ble smiles: crooked, yel­lowed, gapped, chipped.

The chi­ropodist, Howard, is friendly enough. Molly bright­ens when she hears the word “pulp,” but then re­al­izes he’s talk­ing about juic­ing.

She in­vites him back to her place af­ter din­ner. Why not? She likes the look of his lat­eral in­cisors.

He isn’t fazed by her col­lec­tion. He’s an open-minded sort and Molly seems to share his pas­sion for fresh fruit.

While Howard uses her re­stroom, Molly rolls Steve around her mouth and slides him into the gap she’s had since she was a kid. He fits like a glass slip­per. She grins into the mir­ror above her dresser. Her con­fi­dence buoyed, she sits on the bed.

Howard is a bet­ter kisser than Molly ex­pected. She roots around with her tongue, search­ing for vul­ner­a­bil­i­ties. He pulls back, looks at her strangely. “Sorry!” she says.

“I liked it,” he murmurs, be­fore thrust­ing his tongue through Molly’s lips. Steve dis­lodges and ends up in Howard’s mouth.

He spits the tooth into his hand. Molly looks away.

“Don’t feel em­bar­rassed,” Howard says, grasp­ing Steve be­tween his thumb and in­dex fin­ger. He ten­derly grabs Molly’s chin. She opens wide. She feels like Cin­derella.

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