I’m finally losing it. I’ve spent so long searching for clues
that I’m starting to make things up in my head. Why did it
have to happen? I think for the millionth time, tears pricking
at the corner of my eyes. I hurry back to my cold apartment,
where I dig into my coat pocket to find the keys. My fingers
rub against a scrap of paper and I pull it out. The paper
is thick and brown, the letters gilded: Invite to the Feast of
Fools. There’s no address. It’ll be some stupid street act, I
think, stuffing the paper back into my pocket and drawing
out the keys.
I sleep badly, disturbed by strange sounds. Someone outside
must be having a party. The noises seem to seep into the
room. They slide about the walls, scuttling into my ears and
around my brain.
I wake feeling fuzzy and dry-mouthed – the hint of a
hangover – and with a nagging thought: what if there was
something more to that grey figure? What if she was trying
to tell me something… about Stella? Come on, Tom, I scold
myself. She was just some crazy peddler.
From ‘Carne Levate’ by Emma Teichman