Fractal Realities: A Drink in the Dark

Robert Quick

Where the -@!# did my muse go?

Writer, dreamer, knight, shackled by entertainment . . . and people.

Matthews woke up, head flat against his desk, arm curled around a bottle of apricot brandy. It was the scream of the work whistle that did it.

Moving nothing but a shaking hand, as if it were the spider-hourglass emblem of his Ministry of Spies badge, he searched his desk for the cup that must have accompanied the bottle last night. Despite moving with deliberate slowness, when his fingertips brushed against the smooth porcelain, it slid away from him and off the edge with a crash.

Drunk still, then.

Forget the cup and drink straight from the bottle? Or go back to sleep? He tended to sleep a lot. At least these days. Ever since Myerson had started rerouting all of Matthews's reports to himself. It had been a power play and an obvious one at that. Yet he had allowed it, content to let the field of responsibility shift naturally. He was old and probably should retire but he couldn't bring himself to do it. Not just yet. In case his knowledge was needed to combat a threat to the Empire, foreign or domestic.


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