Thursday, October 4, 2012

Dead Rite chapter 128.03


“Dad?” The nurse who claimed she was his daughter, clicked her fingers.

Harold scowled. “What? Is it time to go? Where are my clothes?”

“I don't know. You can't go anywhere, anyway, not until you've been discharged.” She pulled the chair round, one of the plastic injection-moulded ones with folded metal pipes for legs. He hadn't seen one of those since he was at college. He was under the impression they'd been superceded by the ones in banks of four that could be bolted down. She sat, leaned forward and touched his hand again. “I'm worried you're having another episode. There are no such thing as dragons, deep-fried or otherwise.”

Harold watched a fly buzz slowly around the light fitting. Houseflies were amazing creatures. Not content with flying in lazy circles, they had a tendency to change direction at a whim, turning acute angles without any apparent reduction in speed. He could admire their abilities while decrying them for their eating habits and general levels of cleanliness. “Episode?” The concept took him to evening television, his mum's insistence on watching Dynasty over Call My Bluff and the subsequent tantrums until the purchase of a video recorder. Of course, he'd insisted they get a Betamax for the better quality. “Am I on television?”

“No, Dad.” She followed his gaze until she noticed the fly, then picked up the newspaper and stood. He spotted the headline as it flashed past. Flood Warning: Man Builds Ark in Back Garden. He snorted. He remembered the first flood. Jasfoup had suggested 'a week or two's sea voyage' and whisked him away. Noah and his wife had been very good about the impromptu barbecue on the equine deck.

The nurse coaxed the fly out through the open door. Harold wondered if she'd get into trouble for allowing a housefly into a hospital. Still, they used maggots to clean wounds these days, didn't they?

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