Welcome to this INFINITE HOUSE OF BOOKS Shorts Special from Shannon Muir’s Infinite House of Books!

 This offering is a very complete short story, “The Smell of Musk,” republished here after years of not being available online.


by Shannon Muir


Elaine took the flannel shirt off the closet rack and inhaled deeply.  Strong musk.  All his clothes smelled that way.  Prospective suitors reeled when she turned them down simply because they smelled like it.  She never wanted them to compete with her father’s place in her heart.  Her mother died in childbirth, making her father Elaine’s world. Elaine’s father held her tight as she tiptoed into the great big world, caught her from scraping her knees on the sidewalks of life, and lifted her high with encouragement to reach her dreams.  Right then, she’d been living in the cradle of home to get her advertising degree, with her father’s support a constant presence.


Now, a void existed in that heart.  A drunk driver robbed Elaine of her father when the young man, ecstatic after his girlfriend accepted his marriage proposal, broadsided her father on his way home from shopping.


His name was Ben.  Not the driver, Elaine’s father.  Elaine lamented that the driver still is.  And what about his girlfriend?  Would she want to stay with a man who turned is to was?


As Elaine put on the shirt and sank into the well-worn easy chair, she hoped the one who is didn’t smell like musk as she drowned herself in the scent of memories.


Copyright 2002 Shannon Muir

 This month’s feature originally ran on the now-defunct Mocha Memoirs ezine (not to be confused with Mocha Memoirs Press) and rights have since reverted to the author. Join the site in future months for all new bite size tales every Saturday beginning mid-August 2017!

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