Something to Sleep On

You wake up from a dream, startled and awake: very awake. You slide your feet off the side of the bed and look to your left. Your wife is sitting next to you, her chest rising and falling slowly as she makes tiny noises in her sleep. You smile and stand up. Your feet are greeted with a nice warm carpet, and you are glad you went with it instead of the hardwood. You want to yawn, but stifle it on your way to the bathroom. You pause for a second to wonder why people go to the bathroom when they wake up at night. You dismiss it from your mind and continue. The new carpet seems to crunch like new snow under your feet. You feel comfortable. Your pajama bottoms cling loosely to your legs. Your usual white t-shirt, the one that you only really wear so your wife can wear it after sex, slides with you as you move. You reach the bathroom and dread that horrible moment when you finally give up groping around in the dark and turn the light on. You hear a car horn faintly. Fortunately, you manage to get hold of the cup and turn the tap on. It gushes forth and you place the cup under. You hear the water flowing through the pipes and pray that it doesn’t wake your wife. There is a light clunk probably from the boiler room. You take a sip and spit it out. You flick the other temperature and wait for a bit. You empty the glass and fill it again. This time it’s refreshing. The pipes groan as you turn off the tap. Your mind feels clear, light and agile; like you could outwit a scholar. It feels good to be up. You stare out the bathroom’s high window at the receding light of the moon and guess that it’s around three o’clock in the morning. You back down the hallway towards your bed and hear the floorboards creak under you. You noticed the faint blue glow from your computer monitor in the main room and decide to head that way. The brightness hurts your eyes, sending throbbing pains through your skull. You shake your head a bit and miss the sound of rustling sheets. You sit down at your computer and open Microsoft Word. It tells you that it recovered a document; you make a sigh of relief and look at a nearby clock. It reads a flashing 12:00. You deduce that it was an electrical storm and shake your head. You save the document and hear your house settling some more. You walk over to your balcony and open the blinds. They make a rustling noise, much louder than you wanted and they sway still after they’ve been opened. You stare out into the dark neighborhood, cracks of thunder splitting the sky and lighting even the darkest alleys. You can’t help but noticed how softly the rain was falling. It reminded you of gentle tapping, like a mouse was trying to get in. You hear soft shuffling and feel warm arms come around your waist. You smile, and your cheeks feel so high up that they shouldn’t be on your face anymore. You turn and see her, her drowsy hazel eyes staring up at you making you bright like a thunder crack. Boom! Your house shakes a little. She doesn’t seem to notice. She buries her head in your chest and you hold her tight.

A thunder crack, soft tapping, the rain, the house settling, creaking floor boards, crunchy carpet, sheets, sheets again and quiet.


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