Sunday, October 25, 2009

Story in Two Parts - Part Two - in which I open the drawer.


The flat has a smell of boiled vegetables. The humming sound of the fridge, the smell of a bed unmade from one room, the sight of a sock discarded in a ball near a door-frame. I enter it: there is a chest of drawers, the drawers in four tiers on the left as I enter. I pull open the top one on the left, it’s heavy and moves jerkily: some handkerchiefs, a leather belt and a pair of sunglasses. I open the second- there is a postcard, it depicts a sunset.

Then I pull the drawer below. It contains a hand. The hand is dry and shriveled and pale: I recoil. I have found my man. I sit and wait.

I wait there for an hour, and then I hear voices outside. The man has returned, he is talking to another man. I hear, “It is easy, locks like this, child’s play”, and the lock turn. The door opens. “How much do I owe you?” “Forty pounds”. Then, after a pause, “cheers”.

Then he comes in; measured steps, slow his breathing steady. He walks into the bedroom, his face damp with sweat, his hair too. He is balding unevenly. His jersey has a hole on the front, and I sense something desperate, pathetic about him. “Yes,” he says, “You found me.

“I came to take what is mine.”

 “Take it’, he says, it’s yours, and opens the drawer and gives me the hand.

The End.


The Illustrations in Parts One and Two of Story in Two Parts are from "The Universal Alphabet/ The Girl in the Mirror", a set of little paintings, which can be seen on Flickr:


Thanks to Neil Endicott for encouragement.


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