No one is coming. But she thought she’d try the signal anyway.
“Is that you, Prydonia?” asks the pale little boy in her mini-skirted lap. Her fingers, long and white and clean, prance like a butterfly over his sweltering forehead, every nerve of those digits reading necessity into the deuterium-thick droplets collecting on his skin.
“The Laneet, they bleed white, and sweat heavy water when they die in a certain way, did you know?” the boy continues, blinking crystalline peridots at her for a moment, before those luscious orbs close, and his little body quakes with little shivers.
His peripheral nerves are shutting down, because his small fingers curl in a rictus, the steadfast grip of a weak and traitor claw scrabbling in the dark for a random stuffed toy. He can no longer feel them though, so it’s all right.
One side of his face slides down suddenly, a little to the left like one of Dali’s clocks. He quirks wholly in the cup of her grasp, stiffening, a dying saguaro in knee pants.
Her tears leak like oil over her blouse, staining the robin’s egg ruff a dark rain blue, in places.
“Did you have to do it this way, daddy?” she breathes, feeling her constrictor throat seize up into a dirty, mixed up knot entirely similar to the whirlwinds of junk swallowed by polluted rivers.
Georgie Plombkins just smiles; of course, it’s a half-smile now, literally the right half of a smile, what with the stroke coming on again. There, like a nest of fibers in the chalice of her hands, his floppy black hair is turning to snow, pitch melting into cloudy day.