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Copyright © 2017 by Angela J. Maher
Cover image © Pixabay
Interior design by Pronoun
Distribution by Pronoun
A Summer’s Walk
About The Author
Also By Angela J. Maher
BRIAN SAT UP IN BED, forcing muscles and joints to move that would rather stay immobile. Old Mr Archer, they called him. Yes, he was old, but so was everybody else in this dingy, stinking facility. Why did he get “Old” added to his name? Maybe he was the eldest, he didn’t know. His breath came in short gasps as he finally got himself somewhat upright. Anyone would think he’d just climbed a dozen flights of stairs. After a long moment, he swung his legs over the edge of the bed and lowered his bare feet to the cold floor.
The nursing staff had begged him to eat his dinner, but he’d refused. The homogenous glop they’d served up had made his stomach roil just looking at it. So what if it was designed to fill his nutritional needs, it wasn’t real food and he would not eat it. He knew they suspected he was starting to show signs of dementia, but unless they put a monitor on him, or his door, to stop him wandering, he didn’t care. He also knew they thought he would be the next resident to drop off the perch. He could understand why, looking at the stick-thin limbs protruding from his pyjamas.
Brian stood up, stifling a groan. Straightening his back, he shuffled across the floor, opening the door to his room a crack. He peered with his good eye down the hallway, as far as he could. There was no movement in the gloom. He held his breath and listened. Nothing. He hadn’t expected anyone to be around but had to be careful. It was time to track down some proper sustenance. It had been a long time since he’d done this, but he felt weaker than he ever had before.
He slowly opened the door, creeping out into the hallway, before gently closing the door behind him. He checked and oiled the door regularly, to make sure it didn’t squeak the way most of the doors in this wretched place did. He hadn’t bothered to put his dressing gown on, and the chilled air made him shiver. It didn’t matter; what he needed was not far away. His steps came quicker as his eyes adjusted to the near darkness. His eyesight was one thing that had never failed him. Well, in his good eye it hadn’t, at least.