Anatomy of an Arrow
by Natalia Theodoridou
"So, uh, I've been meaning to ask. What's that?" He pointed at the fletching that poked out of a hole in her blouse, a few inches from her chest. It almost dipped in her bowl every time she bent to take a spoonful of soup.
She shrugged and looked away. "An arrow."
"An arrow." He mouthed the word slowly, as if trying to wrap his mind around each syllable.
Still avoiding his eyes, she gently touched the end of the arrow that ran through her. She cleared her throat. "An arrow is composed of the nock," she said, tapping lightly at it, "the fletching, the shaft, and, finally," she turned around to show him her back, "the point, or arrow head." She took a drink from her wine glass. "Cheers."
"I see," he said. He brought his pint of beer to his lips and talked over it before taking a sip. "And you just walk around skewered by an arrow like that?"
"Yeah. Just like that."
"Were you born this way?"
She turned and looked at him sharply. "Who's born with an arrow through their chest?" The couple sitting at the table next to theirs gave her a look. She lowered her voice. "I mean, just picture it. How?" She sipped some more wine. "No, of course I wasn't born this way. Someone shot me."