Lonely Heart

An Article from the November Issue of The Tri-County News by Luella Mason, as provided by Kathryn Yelinek
Art by America Jones

What do you do when you find a beating heart under your lilac bush?

This question confronted Emmeline Harris, 32, of Tomtetown, in April.

“I could tell it was alive,” Ms. Emmeline says, pushing aside her kitchen curtains to point out where she made her discovery. “It was shuffling around in the leaves, beating. And it had little legs on the bottom, like in a cartoon. I thought it was a toy at first, but it felt real. And it was shivering. Poor thing, all alone in the world.”

So what did she do with the heart under her lilac bush?

Ms. Emmeline laughs. “I tucked it in an old cardboard box with a blanket and a hot water bottle. Then I called my sister.”

Zora Harris, 34, Fayetteburgh, works at the Tri-County Animal Hospital and is a certified wildlife rehabilitator.

“I’d never gotten a call like that before.” She grins at her sister. “I thought Emmeline had sunstroke.”

Still, Ms. Zora drove to her sister’s house. “Made the trip four minutes faster than usual.”

The trip was worth it.

“I couldn’t believe my eyes,” Ms. Zora says. “It was on the kitchen table, in a box next to the mail. A living, beating human heart.”

Art for "Lonely Heart"

“I don’t know which it craved more–the food or the attention. After each feeding, it would come over, snuggle up to you like a kitten. That was sweet.”

To read the rest of this story, check out the Mad Scientist Journal: Summer 2018 collection.

Luella Mason’s family has lived in Tomtetown since 1689. She shares her two-hundred-year-old farmhouse with her husband, four cats, and a three-legged Pomeranian. After spending twenty-five years as an elementary school teacher, she began her new career as a writer for The Tri-County News.

Kathryn Yelinek lives in Pennsylvania, where she works as a librarian. She is a graduate of the Odyssey Writing Workshop. Her fiction has appeared in Daily Science FictionNewMyths.comMetaphorosis, and Deep Magic, among others. Visit her online at kathrynyelinek.com.

AJ is an illustrator and comic artist with a passion for neon colors and queer culture. Catch them being antisocial on social media @thehauntedboy.

“Loney Heart” is © 2018 Kathryn Yelinek
Art accompanying story is © 2018 America Jones

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