The beer fell to the carpeted floor with a CLUNK and the man eased back into the wall, then slid down the doorjamb with his mouth agape and his eyes frozen on the small yellow ball which hovered just above his jumbled sheets. It fluttered and wavered unrhythmically, a fluttering of shadows on his walls. The intensity of the brightness ebbed and flowed, but even at its brightest the man was unable to look away.
Or blink, for that matter.
The glowing orb emitted no sound yet there was a rustling din inside the man's head unlike any noise his ears could ever imagine. Similar to the sound of paper bags getting crinkled, but then played through distorted headphones at full volume.
After a few moments the man discovered he could breathe, and he took a faltering gasp and ran a hand through his beard. Strangely, the ball of light seemed nonthreatening, and did little to provoke the man's strong Fight or Flight response. However, the sheer palpability of its abnormality caused numerous goose bumps to pepper the man's arms, even though the temperature of the calm evening air was north of seventy degrees that evening.
The sounds in his head grew to a roar, reminiscent of a twister right above his trailer. He pushed his palms into his ears and tried closing his eyes but found himself utterly transfixed on the foreign light ball that pulsated and grew in size upon his bed.
His gray mesh trucker cap fell to the floor beside him but no wind took hold of his hair or the lapels on his vest. In fact, the air within his bedroom was unusually still, as if his entire immediate existence had been swallowed in a vacuum-filled void, a black hole.
The light pulsated much brighter suddenly, and soon the man had to squint to look at it, but still he could not look away. The sound screaming inside his skull had all the decibels of a throttling jet engine; he pressed his hands so hard against his head he thought he might break his own jaw. Tears streamed from his dry, unblinking eyes. He even thought he saw his dead father's hand reach out and beckon to him.
Unable to process any more, Boyd's eyes rolled and he slumped -- unconscious --to the tattered bedroom rug beneath him.