The First Morning

The alarm went off five times yet the contour on the bed didn’t stir. Blades of the 9:00am rays scattered through the sheets, outlining the window blinds. As though afraid of waking her, the clock’s ticking was unhurried. A cat sprawled on the kitchen top lazily stretched its body. Apart from the flash of ginger fur, the studio apartment was empty. All was still.

The bed creaked. Fingers pulled the sheets closer. There was heavy breathing and intervals of hushed sniffles. This was the first of many mornings where the door won’t open from the other side.

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