Freezer Burn

     “Tell me when you start to feel the burn.” I look over at him with stopwatch in hand like he was conducting a professional scientific experiment.

     “But, Dad, the measurements won’t be accurate. We are much bigger than rabbits, and they have fur,” my big sister says. He had told us that he was trying to find the amount of time it would take before trapped rabbits meat would become freezer burned.

     “Shut up!” He snaps. I look over at her. She is tied to a fencepost as I am; snow up to the knees, with coat, hat, scarf on, but no gloves like me.

     I vow quietly that I will not tell him. I’m sick of these experiments every time he runs out of meds. He reads off each minute. Seventeen minutes: my fingers are on fire from the cold invisible flames.

     My sister tells him at nineteen minutes. “Joey, just tell him,” she urges. But I still refuse.

     At twenty-three minutes: my dad comes over to me fuming. “I needed both results to calculate an average! Well, I guess we are going to have to chop these off,” he says.