On the third day of their honeymoon -- because that was the word for
the vacation you took after you got married -- Jerry brushed her hair. One
hundred long, careful strokes until she felt like she shone as bright as the

Brighter, because they were in England, and it was nearly winter, and the
sun barely shone at all.

Jerry said that when they walked down the street together, all he had to
do was guide her toward the center of the sidewalk, and every hint of
sunlight the sky had to offer would seek her out, because she was just that
perfect. Jerry says a lot of things like that, and makes her smile.

She doesn't *feel* perfect a lot of the time -- it hurts for a long time after
they do it, and she feels like she's had a headache for weeks now -- but
there's something about Jerry that makes her want to believe it.

He makes her believe all *kinds* of things. And she thinks there's something
about that that she's supposed to think about, or maybe *remember*, but
whenever she tries to put it into words, she gets a funny taste in the back of
her mouth like rancid tea, and Jerry rubs a hand along the brim of his big,
weird hat.

No, his big *nice* hat.

She likes his hat.

"And your dress...?"

"I like my dress. It's pretty and blue and perfect."

"Like you, my dear," Jerry says, and presses his mouth to her forehead,
holding it there until the faint skim of spit of dries and cools.

She shivers.

"Alice," he says, "dear Alice..."

She's almost sure that's supposed to be her.