Dreaming of Death by Mark Ulyseas
From The Seductive Avatars of Maya – Anthology of Dystopian Lives – book available HERE
The power cut is now two hours long. But it isn’t hot nor humid for the rain, the monsoon, has arrived and with it the cool air and freshness of breath. Nina lies naked on the bed, legs apart, for the stillness of the air makes her feel a bit stuffy. Her hand reaches down and gently touches her quim…then her breasts… and then back to scratch her armpit.
It has been three days now since she has left the house. The will to walk the streets seems to have been misplaced somewhere between the sheets. That reminds me she thought to herself, got to change the bed sheet…it smells like curdled milk. It must have been the last guy…the hairy toad who always wanted credit…she never gave him because he was rich…he came in a fancy car with a driver…he was always in a hurry…the bulging stomach knocked the wind out of her as he lay on her pushing himself in… wheezing… his nicotine stained teeth reaching out to nibble her breasts…the instant the moment was over she rolled to the side and rushed to the bathroom for she wanted to wash him out of her. Even the rich smell like shit.
Nina is the receptacle; the release valve for a suppressed society…her mother works in a government hospital, living off the tips that she gets cleaning the bedpans of the rich patients. They love her for she removes their debris, the excess of living, and throws it somewhere else and for this currency notes are shoved into her front pocket. Often a grateful patient would reach out and fondle her breasts while she checked his temperature. But she only smiled.
The fan blades move again, the power is back, and the fridge begins to whine. Cool air races across her body…goose pimples rise to the occasion. Nine throws the sheet over herself.
I must change this life, she thinks to herself, this life of suckling the desires of the rich. I must break free and start life anew somewhere else. I shall take mummy with me. I will buy a house with a small garden and plant vegetables; carrots, brinjals and tomatoes.
Her phone rings.
“It’s me, may I come over”
Just then there is a knock on the door.
“Who is it?”
“Damn you were waiting outside the door when you just called?”
She opens the door. Pulls him into the room and kisses him on the cheek.
“What do you want? You always give me money but never allow me to do anything for you…are you a fag?”
“No, just need someone to talk to”.
“Put the money on the table”
He does and sits down on the bed as she lies there head on the pillow, looking over Mount Venus at his face…both are unshaven.
“So what have you written lately?”
“Come here”, she beckons him.
He lies down next to her as she places a leg over him, holding him gently.
“Why are you like this today?”
“I feel my soul has gone, gone from me. The shell remains. It rattles in the night and awakens me. Am I dreaming of death?”
Nina kisses him on the head and whispers, “Patience, you are travelling, you are in a vestibule. Don’t worry, you will arrive. Remain still, all will come to you”.
An hour passes in silence as they lie entwined on the crumpled sheets.
“Ok time’s up…gotta bathe and get ready…I am taking mummy shopping…she needs a new pair of shoes”
He gets up and shuffles to the door, never looking back as he closes it behind him.
The power goes again. She is tired…too tired to get up and bathe…the phone rings…
“Nina have you heard the news?” asks the voice on the other side of the line.
“Your writer friend, his body was found last night near the race track, face down in the grass. Dead. The look on his face was one of complete contentment. It looked like he was peacefully sleeping.”
Nina glances towards the table and on it lies the muddy bank notes that he had just left her. The aroma of his aftershave, Aqua Velva, still hangs in the air. She rushes to the door and looks out. The street is empty, only for the pigeons fornicating on the window sills.
She checks her phone and calls back on the number he had called her from. It rings…then a voice answers…it is a man… “The person you are trying to reach is unavailable; please call back in another lifetime”.
Tears swell and then trickle down her naked body as she stands at the door. Her life had no meaning and yet she lived, lived on hope that one day, one day things will be better…when she wouldn’t have to sell her body…the doctor said she would die soon, the disease eating away her body…she never told anyone hoping she would give them her sickness…a revenge…but is it worth it…what if her writer friend had slept with her…my god what am I doing…what am I doing…
Nina lights a candle in front of the picture of Mother Mary placed on a side table and then crawls back into bed, curls up and begins to dream of death.©Mark Ulyseas, July 31, 2013