Friday, 18 March 2016

Imagined Diaries - The Homecoming

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British bloody Airways! 17.20 my plane was meant to land in Prague. But it was 22.00 on the dot before the damn thing touched down on Czech soil. That’s fours hours stuck at Heathrow Terminal Three. Four hours on top of the two hours that I needed to be there before the scheduled take off. That’s a long time in any terminal, let alone the shittiest terminal there is. And you know what? Not one apology, well not a real one anyway. No we are sorry, only We apologies if the delay had caused you inconvenience. If! IF! Of course it caused me inconvenience, there’s no ifs about it. I was four hours forty minutes late.
It’d been six months since I’d set foot in the Czech Republic. Six months my flat had been locked up, put in mothballs waiting for my return. As the taxi pulled up outside I expected it to be yapping excitedly at the end of its leash, but no it just sat passively, no emotion; coldly awaiting the return of the prodigal son.
The lift shuddered and shook as it took me up the two floors to my flat. I could smell my smell; the smell of the airport, the plane; the damp of Cardiff still lingering on my clothes. I yawned and stretched and coaxed my body into three last steps. I turned the key in the lock and the door swung open. Home from home.

A musty, locked up, smell greeted me, as well as darkness. The bulb had gone in the hall. I stepped into the strange familiarity and heard a crunch under my foot. What had I left on the floor by the door six months ago? Whatever it was it was ruined now. The next footstep, another crunch and then a third. I froze and looked down. It looked like the floor was rocking and rolling. I was surely just hallucinating from the tiredness or my eyes were playing tricks in the darkness. Crunch, crack, crick, clack. I turned the living room light on but nothing. It must have been the fuse that had gone. Crunch, crack, crick, clack. I walked back towards the fuse box. The tiredness made my legs itch and my skin crawl, I thought felt something brush my cheek, something fall onto my shoulder. I slapped my arms and stamped my feet. I was being silly. Just tired. I steadied myself. I felt seasick, I’d been moving all day. I just needed terra firma. I just needed to switch the fuse, get out of these stinking clothes and lie down. Crunch, crack, crick, clack. I reached up above the door and felt around for the fuse. Something moved beneath my fingers. I let out a little scream and pulled my hand away. What the fuck was that? The walls were moving, the floor swelling. Tiredness washing over me.  I took a deep breath and tried again, quickly locating the switch and springing it on. Let there be light.
Ten, twenty, thirty, fifty, hundred, thousand, ten thousand. A million. Brown, black, hairy, scaly, scuttling, rushing, flying, falling, walls, floors, ceiling, doors. movement, a sea of movement. Crunch, crack, click, clack. 

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