His wife missed the alarm. She groaned to compensate. The bed bent and straightened as her weight shifted. He awoke. Breathed cool air from the open window. He would be late for work today.
Something gnawed at him. A hanging guilt. From the day before? No. The day before was just as the day before that, and the day before that was Sunday.
He scanned the closet for shirts. A pink Oxford was the last man standing. He swallowed. When was the last time he did laundry?
Laundry, laundry. A moldy basement. A washing machine. The old apartment at Tailor Heights. Damn that place. Leave it be.
He rinsed his face in the sink. Avoided the mirror. Buckled his belt. Skipped the tie. Froze in the door frame. The hall went dark.
Catastrophe struck through a pinhole.
He wanted nothing more than to leave that place where he grew sick of mind, jostled by phantoms and shades of distrust and dismay. Why then, when the veil between the dream and the matter fluttered like drapes at dawn, did he hesitate to fling it aside and meet the day? Unless reticence was both blinds and screen.
He awoke. With a shove, he spun his legs over the side of the bed. 6:00, said the clock. A garbage truck rumbled into the church parking lot and banged the dumpster across its back. His wife groaned. He checked the alarm.