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Hollowmark and Lovelace 3Chapter Three
January 10th: Minding
Temporary leave. No, that was sugar-coating it. We were on mandatory shelf-time, after a long lecture about protocol and the importance of safeguarding my life. I grimaced at my book.
"Never should've gone in that bloody house," Joseph muttered. He was hanging upside down from the ceiling, not for any discernible reason other than perhaps annoying me.
"It was your idea," I growled back. "All of it. So stop complaining. Even for you, two and a half days of whinging is a bit in excess."
After a short series of loops, he came to a halt more or less standing next to my bed. "No, it isn't. I've known you for the emotional equivalent of fifty years, and you've whined and carried on the entire time."
"That's probably why it feels like such a long time." I put my book back on the night stand. Page 155 of Chalkdust Mary was no
Hollowmark and Lovelace 2Chapter Two:
January 7th : Arrhythmia
My blaring alarm cut into my sleep-softened brain like a scalpel into melting balaton cheese. I covered my head with the flat pillow and groaned. Then I made an easy decision and swept the clock off the desk. Hard. There was a loud crack, and then the incessant beeping cut off.
It was too early to be up.
"You're still a total ponce about sleeping in, aren't you?"
"Proudly," I murmured into the sheets.
"Even when we've got work to do."
"Especially then " I wanted a day off. Just walking around with Joseph was awkward now. I was too used to just turning and talking to him whenever I felt like it. It put me off my stride when he was the only one who could talk.
Here at the dormitories, things could be pretty much the way they'd always been. Everyone could see him in any case, but even if they couldn't, they'd at least know I wasn't cra
Hollowmark and Lovelace 1Chapter One
January 5th : Routine
The damp earth in my hand made the air feel clammy. Not far from me, the priest's voice sounded as though it was muffled by seawater as he droned the appropriate things. I stared hard at the casket they'd already lowered into the grave. The casket wasn't particularly remarkable, and the grave was exactly as deep as one should be. Dreary and plain as dry toast.
"Pathetic, really. That it should come to this," I said quietly, lifting my eyes to fix them on my partner's freshly carved tombstone. Someone had remembered to insist upon that ridiculous middle initial, most likely it had been me. "Absolutely pathetic."
"You're telling me."
It wasn't raining. I wondered if Joseph felt cheated. In our line of work, the subject of funerals had a tendency to arise often and at odd times, and he'd always joked about wanting a suitable sort of rain and a weeping
A Bloody, Stupid Miracle The day we’d cured the human condition was the day I put a bullet through my head and didn’t die. It was also the day I realized how scared I actually was of death, and after hours of muscle ache from holding that gauze against my open skull, after the wound closed and everything went back to normal, I had myself a good old-fashioned brainstorm. How ironic.
But when summer came, everything had fallen to shit. The air scorched my skin and parched my tongue every time I took a breath. The sun glared down on a rapidly-collapsing world, full of the undying bastard children of cruelty and misfortune. What was one to do when their cells regenerated faster than they decomposed?
My feet hit the pavement, now littered with jagged bits of glass to snap at my toes, thoroughly baked by the blazing ball of bitter disdain high overhead. Today was worse than yesterday. Though I’d often wondered the purpose of it anymore, I
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