Tick, tock- tick, tock
Stand still; hands tied behind back. There’s a soft, squishy couch nearby, but a staggering clock hangs above it.
The clock’s hands do not move; sound ticks on.
There was a time where each tick would be desperately counted, where it was the lifeline to the passage of time in a windowless, silent room. Learned long ago (how long?) that time was illegitimate in hell.
There’s a computer in one corner, a mouse next to it. If only hands were free, it could be used. But for a thinner, foot-shaped area, the dust on and around the monitor is at least an inch thick.
There are eyelids- strained and reddened with lack of sleep.
The bed is innocent-looking, deceptive with downy pillows and satin soft sheets upon the softest, smoothest mattress. It is easy, for once, to drown out the angry buzzing of the fluorescent lights in this bed. But for the dreams in this bed, unconsciousness may have been the chosen state of existence in this inescapable room.
Dreams in this bed are, without pause, nightmares that scoop out the insides and reduce hands to shaking messes. That bed is nothing but screams pulled from tortured, cracked lips.
Tick, tock- ticktocktick-
Sit in front of the drip, one hand outstretched as drops drip onto wrinkled folds (one-two-three), plink as they roll through lines and over concealed bones, as if palms were rivers and hands were mountains. Another drop falls. It is cold.
A fear of what may come never leaves the room; settles there, growing with the dri-drip-dripping and the tick-tick-ticking, growing and inflating until sleep is the only escape, yet sleep only inflames the disease, panic strumming through body as if the expected hellhounds were panting next to head, hot stinky breath wafting over nose. There are no hellhounds; not a single injury marrs skin but for those inflicted upon oneself. As another drop, another, another falls onto outstretched palm, a mouth opens in a silent scream.