Re-evaluating Strangers

Robert Quick

Where the -@!# did my muse go?

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

I couldn’t help but groan. Standing up had not been a good idea. Everything hurt.

“Do you know that guy?” the girl asked.

An icy spike shot up my spine. Panic swarmed at the edge of my vision like beating wings. I hunched down and grabbed her arm. “What guy? Where?”

“Let go of me.”

“What guy? Tell me.”

“Let go of me!”

I released her. “I’m sorry. Who were you talking about?”

She glared at me and rubbed her arm through her coat. “That hurt. I should have left you where I found you.”

I swallowed an angry retort and chose my next words more carefully. “Look, I’m sorry. I’m lost and I don’t know how I got out here, wherever here is. So please bear with me if I am a little freaked out.”

“And you’re coughing up blood.” Mentioning that made the inside of my chest itch again as if ants were crawling through my insides.

“That too.” I agreed with a grimace.

“Okay. We’re good but you can’t touch me again. If you do, I’ll-”

“I won’t. I promise. Now who did you see. It might be important.”

“He’s gone now.”

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