…from the case files of detective Pagasmo…
(Continues from Lulled by Rhymes)
I opened my eyes to blinding light. Turning my head, I squinted at clouds stretching out into infinity. Colors shifted in those cumulus puff balls, gathering into the broad strokes of the ninth image in this strange series.
Heaving, those amorphous beauties sculpted themselves into flowers within flowers. And I just lay there and watched.
My limbs were lighter than air. Had I died? As soon as the thought formed, it sublimated. Its vapors joined the clouds, expanding them. My mind stood empty waiting for impressions to fill it as a man walked towards me.
He had a bounce in his step, but it could be due to the springy nature of the clouds he trod. I opened my mouth to ask questions, but they left my lips as silent as a breath and as round as smoke rings. Drifting, they joined the clouds muffling my mind.
Everything I knew was draining out of me into the clouds leaving behind a human husk. And I couldn’t do anything to stop it.
“This must all seem strange to you, but I assure you this is real.” The man stood over me giving me an eyeful of his doc martens. I lost his head and shoulders in the glare.
“Since this is reality, not some feature film, I’m not going to monolog my plans to you while you affect a daring escape.” He toed my head, turning it with care, so the light dazzled my eyes.
“You’re a hard man to find Detective Pagasmo. I had a devil of a time tracking you down. Now you’re here on the other side of dreams and I’ll take your greatest secret.” Turning on his heel, the man strode away.
He left me to wonder in that scintilla of a second before the clouds stole the thought too just what he’d meant. Turning my head away from the light, I sought to grab hold of the threads of me. But this place was fast unraveling me, devouring all I was in silence.
Straining after fragments stolen and toyed with by the wind, my fingers touched a crumb of myself. And it sparked. Turning reflective, the bit I’d captured reflected a wood veneer desk. Great the one chunk of my past I’d managed to catch featured a dull snippet of my office.
There wasn’t even any dialogue in this piece. Let the clouds keep the ten-minute shard of waiting. As I uncurled my fingers, the wind tore it away, lobbing it at the hungry clouds inhaling me.
But somehow, I retained a lingering imprint of who I was. And the impression cast a shadow. I could think in its weak darkness. Maybe it was Gaia’s doing. She owned a piece of my heart, so why not my mind too? After all, our affiliation went back decades, perhaps it predated memory too.
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More Detective Pagasmo stories: The Boxes Are Doors, Descending into Trouble, Epistemology, Novitiate, Lulled by Rhymes, News, Clues and Howitzers, Mixed Media, No Truth in Quotes, Haiku Hunt, Random Risks, Freeze Frame, The Mark of Destiny, Detective Pagasmo in Playing Dead, Detective Pagasmo.