I am freaking out.
I woke, naked, on a stainless steel table. I think it was the cold that woke me. The pervasive chill of disinfectant and white light bulbs.
There’s no one else here. The tray standing at my side–metal of course–is empty and pushed slightly aside. The stainless steel counter at the foot of my table is bare. No supplies visible. Almost as though no one expected me to wake.
A deactivated monitor connects via thin wires to interfaces on the side of my table. It’s not a heart monitor, I don’t think. The bed is a scale. I was laid out and weighed like a piece of meat in the butcher’s shop.
The walls and floor are metal, too. I could be inside a refrigerated truck, or a tin lunch box. I can’t tell. Can’t get a sense beyond the coldness that pervades, stinging my bare flesh.
I expect someone to enter at my movements, but no one does. The door is likely locked, but if the cabinets aren’t, maybe I can at least find a gown or paper sheet to cover myself.
It’s when I sit up from the table that I feel the tug in my chest.
My eyes won’t process. I run trembling fingers, somehow colder now than even before, down the puckering stitches that form a ‘Y’ in my chest.
Author’s Note: These snippets are unedited free-writing exercises that I use as a way to shift my brain into a creative state. I use Lynda Barry’s What It Is YouTube timed exercises (usually 9 minutes worth of writing) for these. They are handwritten in a composition notebook and then typed up here. As I transcribe them, I make minor grammar and spelling corrections, but the overall “clarity” (if you can call it that) of the exercise is left as-is.