Aren’t You All Aglow In Your Thousand Yard Stare
Back in the 21st Century, there was a young man who had tried to take his own life by placing a shotgun under his chin and pulling the trigger.
Everything went as planned. The gun went off, the bullet propelled out of the barrel, and the young man’s head was indeed blown off of its foundation and left dangling from the back of his neck. It was like clockwork, as they would say.
However, there was just one tiny little ‘chink in the armor.’
The poor fucker was still alive.
What made Rand suddenly recall that old news story was beyond her. Perhaps she felt like that guy’s head, dangling by the slimmest of threads, ready to fray and tear off its base. She was kneeling on the floor, her lungs heaving for air, her body so weak that even being on all fours proved too much for her scant reserves, so she crumpled to the floor, resting her hip there.
“Get up, prisoner!”
Rand responded with silence, her breathing displaying the extreme exhaustion that coursed through her. Her prison garb, a flimsy grey wraparound, is barely shielding her from the cold, black floor that feels like ice underneath her. The air around her is no better, its frigidness making her skin rise in clusters of bumps. Rand could see a pair of black boots planted in front of her.
“Get up, I said!”
In spite of herself, Rand chuckled.
“Why the hell don’t you make like a moth and flutter away before I swat you. You’re blocking my glorious light.”
She laughed weakly as she watched the boots step over her body and out of her view.
Rand felt large hands slicing under her arms and lifting her up roughly. “Whoopsie Daisy,” she said in a voice that tried to come out in an acerbic singsong manner, but instead came out hoarse and threadbare.
She’s thrown back into her cell, a clear-plexiglass room, which is one in a long row of such cells in this black, lacquered void of a landscape. She barely misses her cot and lands on the floor in a loud, hollow thud.
Rand hears the sliding door close behind her as she lies on her side, staring underneath her cot. She feels the lids of her eyes grow heavy and is simply too goddamn tired to try to climb onto her cot.
“Fuck it,” she mutters as she turns on her back and falls dead asleep within the merciful, enveloping warmth of her cell.