Shadows Beneath the Sun

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If at any given moment there is not at least one child screaming, one dog barking, any variation of an alarm sounding and/or someone "practicing" an instrument they don't actually know how to play, something is awry in my house. Generally, any kind of silence indicates either that irreparable destruction is in the process of being concealed, or that something is being plotted between recently forged alliances of siblings. On a consistent basis, my house can be accurately characterized as both a war zone and an insane asylum. Growing up alongside four younger siblings, a few animals, and the occasional unlucky wanderer who ended up the midst of our free-for-all, I have grown accustomed to a consistent state of unpredictability and chaos. I am a Slowe.

Over the years, my last name has adopted a certain infamy in our small town. Attendance on the first day of school is characterized by the calling of my name (an incorrect pronunciation of Elsie as Elise), and then "Oh! A Slowe!" My response to this has varied over the years, but I can clearly remember one in particular, sixth grade, when I think I tried to deny that relation. That morning, my two youngest siblings, twins and three-years-old at the time, had taken it upon...

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