The Empress Ascends
by Frank Coughlin
The Empress sat in her throne wondering and waiting. She liked the throne which is what her son Michael called her chair. It was small like her and over the years she had worn her own personal groove into its padding. It fit her.
She thought of Michael, remembering the day he changed her name from Queen (actually Queen Bitch) to Empress.
“I am giving you a promotion,” he said, “you deserve it for putting up with me.”
A tear came to her eye. A mother should never outlive her child. A mother should never hold her dying son in her arms. But that was years ago and time should help you forget. Only now she want to remember, now she wanted some reason to go on. Her body ached constantly a combination of sciatica, arthritis, and bone loss. She could not sleep anymore and only this chair gave her relief.
Her eyes slowly closed, her breathing slowed and there was a deep quiet in the house. When she opened them again, he was there, sitting on the couch gazing at her. He got up and moved toward her, extending his hand.
“Let me help you,” he said. The Empress wore a dazed expression but did not speak. Instead, she let him help her out of the chair.
As if by some miracle, her steps became easier and by the time they reached the escalator, she could walk on her own.
“Thank you, Michael,” she said as she ascended.