[Fiction] A young couple takes refuge in a new home:

“It rained all that September, a grim, cold, bleached-out rain that found the holes in the roof and painted the corners with a black creeping mold that felt greasy to the touch. Heat would have dried it up, or at least curtailed it, but there was no heat—or insulation, either—because this was a summer rental, the price fixed for the season, Memorial Day to Labor Day, and the season was over. Long over. Back in May, when Nora was at school out West and I sent her a steady stream of wheedling letters begging her to come back to me, I’d described the place as a cottage. But it wasn’t a cottage. It was a shack, a converted chicken coop from a time long gone, and the landlord collected his rent in summer, then drained the pipes and shut the place down over the winter, so that everything in it froze to the point where the mold died back and the mice, disillusioned, moved on to warmer precincts.”