one hundred word story #25: breathe

You can't help considering her shoes. The careful way the flowers are arranged on the counter. The recipe card pinned to the stove, those telltale loping cursive letters. And then there's that smell. What is it, cinnamon and cookie dough and starch? You walk in the house and it follows you down the hall, past the needlepoint, beyond the framed photographs of your parents and hers. You used to think it was unshakable, but you worry now, what if it, too, fades? Can you replicate it, memorize it? Did she leave a recipe? Fill your lungs. It is there somewhere.