The shrill ringing of the alarm woke up the figure in the small room. It stirred and slowly reached out to dismiss the alarm.

Get your life together, read the title of the alarm, but it didn’t provide further instructions.

Groggily, the figure proceeded to pick up the phone to check the time. It was four in the afternoon, time for the last appointment of the day.

Is it worth going to?

Are there any repercussions to not showing up?

I can reschedule, right?

The phone is put down and the figure, weighed down by unknown fatigue turns over to face the wall. It doesn’t hold any answers, nor does it hold any motivation to leave the bed. It heaves a sigh and turns over to face the rest of the room, again.

The room is mostly dark, curtains drawn shut and the lack of sun in winters contributing to the gloomy atmosphere. A certain chill glides along the floor, like unseen mist; the figure is aware it will start to creep along her ankles when she deserts the comfort of her resting place. Sometimes, she had an inclination to creep along the mist on the floor, to see if she could become one with it. It had already seeped into her bones.

With effort paramount to running a mile without having consumed food or water for several days, she heaves herself off the bed and watches her feet placed on the floor. The toes are slender, the index longer than the rest. The floor, she notices vaguely, is dirty. She can’t recall the last time she swept away the dust with a broom, nor when she dusted off the shelves which held her precious collection of books. A hazy memory of venturing into the black market with her parents, wildly laying claim to one book, then the other invades her mind, disappearing as fasts as it came.

They were gone, but the books remained.

At least her closet is well organized, and it doesn’t take more than a minute to assemble her clothes into something worthy of appraisal. The season was an excuse to hide beneath layers of clothing, to wear black so it didn’t look out of the ordinary, while she mourned unknowingly to most eyes. Another sigh escapes her lungs.

Meandering through people, eyes never leaving the clouded horizon, she somehow makes her way to the appointment with her advisor.

What’s this, a note? Won’t she be back until tomorrow?

Disappointment weighs heavy on her petite frame and tears sting the corners of her eyes. All this effort put into the dressing, making herself presentable, leaving her bed, for nothing at all. Hurt, then anger overtakes her body. It rushes through her veins at an impossible speed, until all she can think of is flinging the receptionists mint bowl off the counter.

And she does. The plastic resounds against the floor, cheap mint scattered everywhere. It goes quiet, and they stop and stare. Exhaustion takes over the rage, and it takes all her strength to remain vertical. An apology muttered quickly and she stumbles out of the building, and back towards her residence.

It’s time for tea, and the crowd heads towards the cafeteria, and in short, her direction. A few familiar faces; they recognition turns to concern, as she averts her eyes and keeps moving on.

Almost there, almost there.

It takes every fiber of her being to keep from wailing in the elevator as she reaches her room.

Exhaling on a sob, the immaculate dressing is thrust without a care on the dirty floor and she climbs into bed as if followed by something wicked. The mist isn’t corporeal, yet.

She wraps the blanket around herself, protection from the world she bolted from. Here is a comfort; here is silence from the mundane buzzing of the world. Breathing exercises become futile, and the lump in her throat hurts beyond belief.

The mist swirls recklessly, gleefully.

Outside, it starts to pour.


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