The scene: My bedroom. It's three am and I can't sleep yet again. I'm lying flat on my bed, a pad of tatty A4 lined in front of me. Sitting on the rocking chair behind me is a somewhat two-dimensional teenage girl with a withered left leg.
The silence is awkward. Suddenly, words explode into being, and at first, I'm not sure where from.
"What's your excuse now?"
It's me. I put my fountain pen down on the bed, turn to look at her smug grin.
She tosses her long auburn hair at me. Funny how giving someone a storyline makes them instantly so unlikeable. "Excuse? Who said anything about excuses?"
"Don't play games with me, you know what I'm talking about. It's been nearly three years since you first started bugging me and you know how much has actually been written?"
"How much?" She doesn't blink, even though surely she's got to know the answer.
"Excepting the first page, which has been written forty-seven times... absolutely none. So, what now? Thought you weren't getting enough attention? If you won't answer my questions, why won't you just go away and let me get on with a story that might actually like being written? "
"So, you want to know what I think?"
"That might have been ever so slightly the point."
I make to pick up my pen, ready for whatever crumb of information she might be willing to give me. I look at the sheets. There's a short pause as I spot the spreading blue stain and attempt to attack it with an ink eradicator.
"Well," she says once I've give up in disgust. Blue sheets are cool too. Who doesn't want spotted bedclothes? "I think you're a fine one to talk about making excuses. It's been three years and you still haven't worked out the right questions to ask me."
"And they call me evasive..."
I bang my head against the wall. Iris flickers around the edges then, in the blink of an eye, is no more.