The old man’s eyes lit up as the young man entered the living room.
“Lovely to see you again,” the old man said. “Weren’t you here just the other day?”
“Yes,” the young man lied. His chest tightened.
The old man’s head of white hair was combed and flattened, not a wisp out of place. The sofa did not cushion him; he sat bolt upright, a throwback to his army days. Within arm’s reach lay an old Polaroid camera, and on his lap a photo album. He would photograph his guests and label the pictures: name, occupation and record of acquaintance.
The old man gestured. “Sit down, make yourself comfortable. It’ll come to me in a minute.”
The young man opened his mouth.
“Don’t tell me,” the old man said, “it’s on the tip of my tongue.”
The young man pursed his lips.
The old man scoured the album. Finally, his index finger came to rest on a photo, and he bent closer to read his notes. A pained expression crossed his face. He rose and spread out his arms.
“Good to see you, Son.”
“Good to see you, Dad,” the young man whispered.
Nadia Jacobson is a fiction writer from London, England who currently resides in Jerusalem, Israel. She recently completed an MA in English Literature and Creative Writing at Bar-Ilan University and serves on the editorial board of their forthcoming fiction and poetry journal entitled Ilanot.