It was a dull and dreary Monday morning, and Heather Watkins woke up a little blue.
She gripped the sides of her sink and stared in horror at her reflection in the mirror.
“Oh my God,” she muttered, “I look like a Smurf!”
She grabbed her foundation from her make-up bag and plastered it on. Still blue. The make-up seemed to somehow change to blue as it touched her skin.
She called her office. “I, uh, I can’t make it in today,” she said.
Her manager swore. “Not you too? I’ve had half the office call in sick. You’d better bring in a bloody sick note from the doctor.”
“No buts! Sick note or else!”
She didn’t really want to leave the house looking like a Smurf, but she had no choice. She called the doctor and got an appointment.
She could wear a long sleeved top and trousers to cover up her arms and legs, but all she could do to cover her face was to pull her hair down as far as possible and keep her head down. She left the house and stuck her hands in her pockets, shuffling along with her eyes fixed on the pavement.
She was nearing the doctor’s office when she suddenly found herself surrounded by fog.
“Oh! Hello dearie!”
She groaned inwardly. It was Mrs McConnaughy, the senile old biddy from the house on the corner. But where had all the fog come from?
“Terrible, isn’t it, this fog,” Mrs McConnaughy said. “It’s everywhere. Is it in your house, too? I can barely see a foot in front of me. Are you alright, dearie? You look a little off-colour.”
Heather backed away quickly. “I’m, uh, no, actually, I was just going to the doctor’s. Can’t stop. Appointment.”
A couple of feet away from the old lady, the fog cleared. Heather blinked as the four foot square bank of fog walked on along the pavement, Mrs McConnaughy’s voice still drifting out of it.
“I must be going crazy,” she muttered to herself, and hurried on to the doctor’s office.
Inside, it was chaos. A young man sat in the corner with a small dark cloud hanging over his head and a steady drizzle raining down upon him. A small puddle was spreading out from his chair. A stressed young mother was struggling with her toddler, who was spitting out beans into a bucket but still trying to play with all the toys.
She stared around the waiting room and edged towards the receptionist. “What the-”
“Do you have an appointment?”
The receptionist looked harrassed. “Um, yes,” Heather said. “Heather Watkins, ten o’cl-”
A screaming woman hurled herself through the doors and towards the receptionist, sending Heather flying to the floor with one sharp elbow.
“Help me,” she shouted, “You have to help me! I need a doctor!”
Heather stared. The woman was clutching a pile of what looked like shattered glass. More of it was gathered up in her skirts.
“He just finished his shift,” she wailed at the receptionist. “He was just telling me how tired he was and he just-”
A large pinkish piece fell to the floor in front of Heather. An eye blinked up at her and she screamed.
© Kari Fay