The Mourning Sun

The wood pigeon had returned. This time it did not look so confident. It had been three days since he last saw it and, at first, he was glad of its company. But, even from this distance, he could tell that it wasn’t doing well.

Aside from his avian acquaintance, he had not seen any other form of life. Where had all the dogs gone? Probably locked inside with their dead owners. Some may have even had a last supper at Pappa John’s Thigh or Buttock Diner. Something endearing about a dog that was prepared to consume its owner. Cats, though? Where had all they gotten to? Like the birds, there were none to be seen; begging your pardon Mr Woodpigeon.

He looked to where the woodpigeon should have been sitting and could not see him. Could have flown off, but it seemed more likely that it had fallen off. So, that made him ‘numero uno’ last thing alive in the street; he hoped.

By eleven, the heat had risen and the world was starting to be played out in waves of rising air. It had a surreal quality, a layer of psychedelia placed over the unquestioning madness of the nothing that lay before him. The stench began to claw its way through the tape that he had placed over the gaps in the door frames. Easy to ignore at first, but it kept coming, and the more he tried to ignore it, the more it scratched at the edges of his senses. That was when the thoughts came.

He woke with a start. His sentinel at the window curtailed by a loud, and he thoguth about this, fart. Someone had farted so loudly that he had been shaken from his slumber. He checked his watch and it told him that three hours had passed. He checked the room and found that nothing had changed. He checked the television arial and the pigeon was stil not there. Finally, he checked the thermostat and it was nudging ninety. Then from above him came another unmistakable expulsion of wind.

He was up and racing for the door, an image of a farting army of zombies descending the staircase, urging him to move faster and faster. It’s hard to move fast when you haven’t moved for days, but he made it, just as another volley of farts exploded above him.

Hands on the lock, he tried to pull open the door without success. He tried again. He was about to do a third time lucky when he thought he heard a foot on the creaky step. He dare not look around to confirm his fear and in not doing so, he realised that the front door had been double locked. He turned the key with fingers coated in sweat. The door finally opened and he was out and slamming it shut again before running towards the road and along it.

He could have run for ten minutes, but it was more like one. Sixty seconds of flight and he was straining to get air. His muscles screamed in a pain of acid.

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