Familiar | Andrew Smedley

There’s a knock on the door.

The man raises his head in suspicion, rubbing the drowsiness out of his eyes. 

 “Odd,” he mumbles to himself, “awfully late for anyone I know.”

He shuffles over to the front of the apartment and peers through the spyhole, intent on catching the thief stealing his time, but is met by nothing more than the dim light illuminating the hall. Puzzled, the man opens the door and studies the empty carpet to the left and right of him. 

“How immature.” he scoffs, returning the locks as his exhaustion settles in again. 

A loud ringing comes from the kitchen.

The fatigue immediately turns to annoyance, and then to confusion as he reminds himself of the time. The noise only gets louder as he makes his way to the phone.

“Hello?” he attempts, but is met only by the line’s static tone. 

Shaking his head, the man decides to ignore this anomaly in favor of treating his now painfully heavy eyes. He can barely keep them open enough to navigate to the bedroom.

She’s laughing from the room.

He freezes midstep, there shouldn’t be anyone there besides himself. Solemnly, he glances into the room. The moonlight through the window outlines her silhouette onto the bed, tracing every detail of the long dark hair that covers her pale face. She lies still on the mattress, peacefully absorbing the nighttime glow. Struck in disbelief, the man lunges forward and guides his hand to her shoulder, only to feel the smooth comforter that already forgot her presence. Again rubbing his bloodshot eyes, the man lies himself down to finally rest. 

He hears a knocking outside the room, and sits up wide awake.

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