Daddy? Daddy? Where's Tommy? Why hasn't he come home? I want to play with someone. I want to play with Tommy. Daddy? Daddy? Why is Mummy sick? She sleeps all day and all night. I never see her come out of her room. Is she hi-ber-na-ting? I learnt that today at school. Is Tommy hi-ber-na-ting too? Sometimes I want to play with my new trains, but I won't. Tommy said he would play with me but he can't. He's on holiday. Why is Tommy on holiday, Daddy? There's a rash on your neck, Daddy. It's red. Is it sore? Are you sick like Mummy? Daddy? Daddy? Why does Mummy cry at night? I can hear her through the wall. But she don't want no tissue from me, she uses her pillow. Can I use my pillow, Daddy? Daddy, you cry too. Does naughty boys and girls write nasty words on your homework too? They say I smell. Daddy? You're not smelly. Daddy, I'll tell you the truth. I see you cry at the dinner table when I pretend to play with my trains. I'm waiting for Tommy, Daddy. Are you too? Daddy! Daddy! Mummy came out of her room. She went into the kitchen and went into the cupboard only grown ups are allowed in. Am I a grown up, Daddy? She said 'Go play with your trains. Be a good boy.' So I went into the sitting room and pretended to play with my trains. She took a lot of boxes out of the cupboard, Daddy, and I heard her run a bath. Daddy, where's Mummy gone? I haven't seen her since yesterday. She must be shrivelled up like a prune. It's not fair that she can stay in the bath for so long. If she's playing with my toys, it's ok. Daddy? Daddy? Stop crying. I won't ask any questions any more. But, has Tommy and Mummy runaway because I didn't play with my trains?
Its face, reflecting the light, swallowed itself in shadow. Cheeks sunken. The eyes like caves. The nose, two gaping holes. Its mouth sewn shut, least let it tell the world its secrets. Its dark, sinister secrets. Loneliness. Hatred. Fear. Intrusive thoughts bind malign alike. The black suit, ripped and decaying, swaddled the thing as if it were a dead baby, hung on this tree like a Christmas decoration.
I took out my phone.
Her long brown hair swayed slightly as she brushed the concrete floor, collecting the abandoned cigarette butts and the bits of litter that covered the floor.
It was early in the morning when I saw her. Her yellow jumpsuit lit in the slow, winter morning light.
I approached her quickly and tapped her on the shoulder. She didn't seem to startle.
"Hi." She said, and turned around to get back on with her job. Her face was different from the last time I saw her. It had sunken in, like the Titanic when it had lost all hope.
"Did you kill those people?" I asked. It seemed far from her normal behaviour.
She turned to look at me again. "I'm serving eight life times. Seven for the people I killed and one for luck."
"I didn't ask you a question for that answer."
"Why does it matter?" Her eyes were cold and soul less.
I sighed "Well?"
"No. But nobody listens to the innocent."
"I believe you."
Somebody shouted in the background . "OI! GET BACK TO WORK!"
She flinched and turned away again, sweeping the ground and wouldn't be talked to again.
Nothing other than shrubbery could be seen out of the bus window. A veil of thick fog protected everything underneath and beyond it from our destroying gaze. An opaque window distorted the view, as if censoring from our impious eyes. We cannot taint if we cannot see. Fog is Gaia's cureless plan. And, realising her mistake - of giving us eyes that already know - she lifts the fog slowly. Deliberately. Her weeping; the fine mist.