You could picture poor beleaguered Tom the Tailor, fingers flying between sewing machine, needle and cash register and imagine that despite the mounting pressure around the holidays he is for the most part content. Content with his station in life. A simple man, maybe he even mastered his trade at his father’s knee. You’d be wrong. Inside Tom is a caldron of anger, confusion and violent emotions that is only kept in check, he’s learned, through busy finger therapy. Working until he goes numb is far preferable to the vicious merry-go-round of pills and booze. Does that fly in the face of what you’d expect from a tailor? Probably. Attracted to a world of hurt and drama, Tom adopts a stray dog waiting on the entrance ramp to the highway (see “Find Charlie” https://leewords.com/category/micro-fiction/featuring-animals-insects-plants). “Both of us are a bit loss, eh fella?” he says to the blonde lab on the drive back to town. He calls his new found friend Edgar for no reason other than the fact that Edgar sounds specific, unlike Tom for instance. For months Edgar is the perfect shop dog. He rarely barks. Waves his tail and makes the customers feel welcome. Lately however Edgar has been growing more protective which seems to mirror Tom’s increasing agitation. After punching a hole into a wall, Tom wonders what he’ll do if and when sewing therapy fails him? It’s eight pm. He’s about to close up shop when Mr. X crosses the threshold.