I really liked this story. Favorite moment: "That night, they lay in bed . . . puttering . . . everything takes time, even if it seems like it doesn't." I felt despair and emptiness. And what a fabulous ending! You have an amazing ability to get inside a woman's head. I felt that the story lost a little believability when she popped birth control pill at restaurant, but maybe that's just me. I'm pretty religious about the timing of my birth control pills.
Truly a remarkable portrait of this young couple in such a small space, especially of Emma. The author's use of increasing amounts of snow as an indicator of the protagonist's withdrawal into herself and her anxious fears was the strongest element of this story for me. The ending is almost haunting me with the "thick, fast-falling snow" causing Emma's teeth to chatter; seemingly a culmination of her fears for Richard's safety and her own insecurity.
Mr. Croley, I wish that you had been my creative writing instructor in college. Great story.