Strawberry, mint and vanilla

In a dark corner of a 7-11 Samantha drooled on the pink and mint floor. Plump drops of thick liquid fastened her to madness in the eyes of the average onlooker and Angie Curtis was your average onlooker.

Tiff spun her candy cigarette in her fingers, it hit the tiles. She picked it up and returned it to her mouth with greedy swiftness and munched it into chalk.

All the while, the pool around Samantha grew and Angie’s anxiety went swimming in it, her body became more and more rigid and she sank into fear.

Samantha had gone to a place unheard of, with purple walls reaching into blackness, skies so vast it made one quiver on insect-jointed legs.

Confusing lines were drawn over and through things that we hold as opposite ends of a spectrum: day became night between breaths. It was hard to tell if you were outside or in, if you were breathing air or liquid chocolate or shit.

Clammy coldness flickered to feverish heat and the senses entwined in a swirling fluid chaos.

10 minutes of deadness in Samantha’s eyes made Angie frantic and convinced her of a harsh pragmatism encasing a deep and fearful desperation.

She emptied a water bottle over Sam’s head and with a wheezing shock and speed the two of them swept the shelves into their bags and bustled into the stock room at the back, dragging Tiffany with them.

After the adrenalin had worn off Samantha crashed into a pile of their coats and packing cardboard and slept heavily for hours.

Angie pushed all the packing crates against the door, stacking them into towers. She regretted soaking her, but it gave her something to think about as she wrung her clothes back into the empty bottle as best she could and hung them up.

After eating a miserable feast of sweets she would have once enjoyed, she sing-song spoke Tiff to sleep and fell into it herself. Her dreams were grasping hands and heavy footsteps.

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