I walk into the kitchen. “Dorothy?” There is no response but my own echo. “Blanche? Rose? Sophia?” Nothing. I open the fridge and find it warm and empty, apart from a single cheesecake covered in a thick layer of mold. The lanai, I think. They must be out on the lanai. I peer out the window and see no one—just a school of fish swimming under the chaise. Are we underwater now, I think. Have we always been? I walk to the living room and sit down.

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I hold my breath and place a tight grip on the couch as the water begins rushing in. The shock of the cold subsides as I notice the bodies of my friends rush in from the ceiling. I exhale a symphony of bubbles and forget my desire for oxygen as we float around the furniture in an aquatic ballet.

“Sit,” Dorothy tells me with a smile, so I swim to the bobbing chair and force it back to the floor with my body. Once it arrives with a thud, the women join hands and begin spinning above me. What is this strange dance, I wonder as the the wicker expands and wraps me in its many arms until they’re indistinguishable from my own.

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I, a wicker man among golden girls, have been thanked for being a friend.