Mach opened the door to the living room, and his parents stood up in unison. His dad held the newspaper in his left hand. His reading glasses had slid down the long nose to facilitate the characteristic squint when switching from reading to watching the telly, which droned on with some sports event. His mom met Mach’s eyes. Her Tuesday apron had handprints of flour across the chest. There was no sarcasm in her stare, just blinding openness. On the coffee table in front of them was a tiny Fabergé egg.
“You don’t have to do this,” Mach said.
Music pairing: Return of the Mack by Mark Morrison