There’s a ringing of church bells, and as the rain comes down harder and harder until each raindrop hitting my face feels like a pinprick, I take refuge beneath a parked car. Getting down onto my belly, my lips touch the cold, wet ground. It’s like kissing a lover who doesn’t want to be lover, but before I can dwell everything changes. In the time it takes to blink, I’m in the cemetery where Bethany is buried, and although it’s dry and sunny, there’s no air in my lungs, and I’m cold all over. Searching for her resting place, I find the location, but it’s all overgrown. Pulling away the weeds, I discover the elephant ornaments me and Sarah placed there all those years ago, only when I go to pick them up and clean them, all of these insects scuttle out and crawl upon my hands. I try to get rid of them, but they don’t shift. There are centipedes and beetles, and things I can’t identify that keep biting and sinking their pinchers into my flesh. Falling backwards, I know it must be a dream, but I can’t escape. I want to run to where Sarah used to live, but can’t remember in which direction her old house is. Trying to get away, my legs turn to jelly causing me to tumble onto my stomach again. I keep saying that I’m sorry, that I never meant to neglect her, but the cold earth is in my bones, and my entire body feels as though it’s on the verge of shutting down. This is what it feels like; I keep saying to myself. This is how it is to die, but I don’t want to die, I want to love and say sorry to all those I’ve hurt, but the more I scream, the more insects get into my mouth until I can feel them in my stomach, scuttling around and gnawing at my insides.

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