It would not be until a week after, during a quiet moment in a chaise lounge on her backyard deck at dusk in the suburbs that Dana would, in her mind, come to. The event had been a javelin into her heart; it rendered her what she had almost never been. Weepy.

Her husband, Todd, grilled steaks and zucchini. Her daughter Ella, a sophomore in high school, spread long across on a beach towel on the patio landing below the deck, sunning. They were in their own sullen reveries.

It was their first day in a week outside; the house had been coming in on them since the oldest daughter, Nicole, had announced she was quitting her collegiate softball team.

To Todd it had been…well, he was a doctor, and the immediate phrase flood to his brain was toxic shock, as if inhaling a bottle of pills, and resulting tympanic thrum of pain that bangled through his nerves. Ella clenched her fists in disgust at her idol as a boy would rip posters of football stars from his wall. The reactions were physical, then verbal; their bodies had seized up, registered the purest hits of emotion before there were words to form their protests. It was Gregor Samsa's family after bugdom. It was a deep, true pain, and the smoke of a grill searing T-bones began to pull loose the bandages over the scars. Over these steaks, the zucchini, a small salad and peaches with cottage cheese the family would begin to put to lips the vibrations clanging at the ends of their minds.