Title: While he was Gone
Word Count 350
While he was Gone
He listened, to the sound of Kyd's
footsteps down the stairs and away. His eyes were half shut, his
mouth slightly open. He was listening, stretching out to feel the
world from where he sat. The fire was warm, he was dry and sat in
comfort, but there was nothing indolent or sleepy about him now..
Finally he heard only the rain and his own heart beat loud in his
ears. There was no reason to think Kyd would return. He was only
going to buy fish. Still, Christofer waited for some time more,
Then he got up, and moved to sit facing
the door. The bag he needed was resting by his bent and crumpled
boots. He pulled it close with one hand. The papers were there at the
bottom. The book he needed was on the table, innocent thus far. Kyd
had been using it. There was a knife too, not his eating knife, or
his pen-knife, but another. He brought that up to rest in his lap,
weighty against his thighs.
He drew the book close, the page he
needed was at the back. He began, brow furrowed, thinking hard. The
silence expanded around him, as he worked the letters and numbers.
It was fiddly stuff, he stopped several times to make corrections.
After some time he stopped. He read
through it carefully, what he had written, pushing it into memory. He
gnawed on an ink spotted knuckle as he did so. When he had it he fed
both papers to the fire. He watched to be sure they were consumed.
He added a few sticks to the fire, and poked it to a benign and
pleasing heat. Kyd would be cold and wet when he returned. He put the
book back where Kyd had left it. He was moving more easily now. He
went back to sit where he had been before. The knife was back in his
bag. All was as it had been, but for the ink on his hand, and one
foot which twisted aimless, nervous, against the floor, heel in the