Through the haze of the evening mist, Maera waded through. She always walked fast, with quick, long steps. She wasn’t restless, she just hated it when things were slow.
She stopped at the entrance of her house which was an independent villa among many other independent villas on the lane. Fumbling through her Gucci handbag for keys, she fished out her ‘skull keychain’ which she had kept through high school. She laughed. She was 24 now and the skull didn’t look cool to her anymore.
Bottles of Corona were stacked in the fridge. Maera’s feet automatically took her there and her hand picked up a bottle. Like breathing, this was involuntary.
She walked to the window and brushed aside the curtains. Her eyes widened at the sight outside. How did she never notice it while walking back home? It was Christmas and the streets were filled with exuberant people decorating their trees and snowmen. She took another sip of her beer.
Children ran around in shapeless patterns and their parents ran behind them. People stopped to greet each other and exchanged a few courtesies. Presently, someone was giving their neighbour some freshly baked cookies. They were all smiling. Maera looked at the smiles. Their teeth were white and their tongues swirled in their mouths like poisonous snakes that glide secretly before they bite you.
She opened another beer. Her gaze fell on a child. She looked closer. She choked on her drink.
“It can’t be, I must be drinking too much!”, she thought. She looked again but saw the same thing. The eyes. Why was they all white? Shaking slightly, she clasped the window bars. She slowly looked at another child. Two transparent balls of white. There was no iris, no pupil, nothing. She panicked and ran back inside her room. She downed her beer and then downed another.
Her head seemed to be all too steady in a room that spun. She didn’t blink for some reason. She wasn’t afraid. She didn’t need to be afraid. She stood there, drinking beer after beer.
The room didn’t spin anymore.
The next day’s newspaper carried the headline in big fonts:
“Girl found dead in her apartment”
Reports said that she had a stroke because of her alcoholism. They also found a note:
In about two minutes, I know I’m going to die because I’ve understood everything.