Now and then I'll post a new bit of my short fiction.



Catching Up

At 11:33, shaking and exhausted, he finally went to bed. His habit was to end the day no later than 9:00. All right. 9:15 if a particularly good book had his attention. 9:30 at the very latest. But this evening a veritable parade of distractions kept him up long past a decent hour. Stopped-up toilet begging to be plunged. Phone call from sister. Neighbor and neighbor’s wife carrying on a drunken argument on their front lawn. Forget 9:15. Forget 9:30. 10:00 came and went, then 11:00. 11:10. 11:20. Only at 11:27 was he able to brush his teeth, drag on pajamas and collapse into bed.

Find a comfortable position under the blanket.

Reach out with one hand and snap off the lamp on the night table.

The clock by the lamp wearily blinked an unhappy message.




11:32. . .

11:33 saw the onset of unconsciousness. 2 hours and 33 minutes late. Blame the toilet. Blame the sister and the neighbors. 2 hours and 33 minutes behind schedule. Was there anything he hated more than being behind schedule?

Little comfort that a cool and dim-lit day would dawn when he could catch up on this lost bit of sleep, forever.

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