“Well Wishing” by Steve Berman from Second Thoughts: More Queer and Weird Stories (Lethe Press, 2008). Originally published in Country Boys (Cleis Press).
At the outset this next story felt very familiar. It called to mind work by Inge and Williams before veering into grislier territory. A flat tire forces the main character—referred to simply as “the salesman”—to pay a visit to a farmhouse in the middle of the Heartland. The farmer is anything but friendly, even after he knows the stranger isn’t making a sales call, while his daughter is far too friendly. The last character is the girl’s taciturn brother. Story events conspire to force the salesman to spend the night. You may think you know what will happen next, but you’re wrong.