For Abbie

This is short, and I’m not sure I truly did it justice, but this was prompted by my dearest friend Abbie, who writes fiction at Dust on the Keyboard.

* * *

Three weeks ago, I died.

It wasn’t a traumatic thing; I think I blew an aneurysm in my sleep. One minute, dreaming about Carly Rae Jepsen all sudsy on her car in that stupid video, the next minute, all the blood supply for my brain comes into it at once, filling it with oxygen rich awesomeness, until it’s too much, everything is suffocated in red bloodcells that can’t leave again to get reoxygenated, my bloodpressure bottoms out, my heart stops, and my neurons go dark.

Pretty sure I didn’t really feel a thing.

But I know I died. When I woke up the next morning, no pulse, my skin a funny grey color on one side, and bruised-looking on the other (post mortem lividity plays hell on your skin tone — no L’Oreal product was gonna fix that) and my left sclera a brown, dead-poppy color, I realized my mouth was dry, and my body was cold, and my lips had gone purple blue. I stared at myself in the mirror for awhile, examining my eye, licking my lips, and brushing my hair, the only thing that looked unchanged.

I was trying to puzzle out how to fix this, when the phone rang.

It was my boss.

I was late for the morning shift, and two other people had already called out. It was one of the busiest days in the business, and he was pissed.

I tried to tell him I was sick, but he yelled back, “I don’t care if you’re fucking dead, get your ass in here!”

I was still living paycheck to paycheck, and I figured since I was dead I might not need food, or heat, or anything like that, but I was certainly going to need a place to stay, and that place would charge me rent… so I put my uniform on, and I headed out the door.

* * *

“Cool costume, brah,” a customer told me. “Walking Dead, right?”

“Yeah,” I answered, not knowing what else to say, and handed him his bag and his receipt. “Happy Halloween.”

About Catastrophe Jones

Wretched word-goblin with enough interests that they're not particularly awesome at any of them. Terrible self-esteem and yet prone to hilarious bouts of hubris. Full of the worst flavors of self-awareness. Owns far too many craft supplies. Will sing to you at the slightest provocation.
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