Hot Tea, Cold Space

The remains were left out for the foxes. A man put a pan of water onto the stove and boiled water for tea. Peices of fabric floated in the late afternoon. Winter was on its way. Deep in space, UFO’s hung steel still…balls of light darted around it like plankton. The man sipped at his tea. The flowers sat in the sink. The card had been removed from its packaging. It lay open upon the table. Blank. Like the man’a mind. He decided, finally, that there was nothing to say but “sorry”. It seemed to short; curt, even. “I’m sorry” sounded like he’d run over a cat, someone had lost a child or he’s soiled a party. That he didn’t know how to apologise for ramming into his neighbours car annoyed him. He poured a large vodka and sprite and rolled a cigarette.
She watched him smoke. And what was he drinking? The stara were out.
He staggered. The flowers had wilted. His eye began to throb again.
He blacked out.
Some weeks later he recalled standing at his neighbours door; empty bottle of vodka in one hand and wilted carnations in the other. He didn’t remember speaking; merely stuffing the flowers into his neighbours hand and nodding towards him.
He shuddered, picked around the periphery of a cigarette scab and bit his lip.
Cool pain fell upon the new flesh.
Still, though…and wrapped in the indifferent cosmos.

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