Naomi robbed two large breaths from her sister and then robbed a third out of desperation; desperation was the stability that she sometimes needed in order to remain standing on both feet. Her hands began to judder. The paint brush slipped through her palm and decked onto the floor; red colour splattering across parts of the yellow wall that still remained in her bedroom. Claustrophobia refuged her four senses and she shut her eyes to the fifth; her present became dark.
Wave after wave of terror began to drown her sanity one droplet at a time, and she let her body drown with it; enough to satisfy its needs in another game of tug of war. Her chest tightened, and pain drifted down her legs, thighs pulsating to the rhythm of the sirens that were soaring through the night. She bent her hips and launched her body towards her bottle of anti-anxiety pills resting at the far end of her table, managing to grasp only the thin air around it. The floor slipped under her feet and her hands clenched the chair in front, stopping herself from dropping dead onto her knees.
Fifty-eight, fifty-nine, sixty.
Her counting interspersed with the rise and fall of her chest and she forced her eyes to open, trying to align herself with the world outside. A world full of sad clowns. Sad clowns on autopilot. Heat mounted the sides of her head and the needles on the coniferous trees outside her bedroom window turned into blotches of green.
Need more distractions. Just keep breathing. It will end soon.
Above the trees was a plane that seemed too close to the ground and going a bit too fast for anyone’s comfort. Her pupils trailed the blurry edges of the aircraft; its wings obeyed the uneven rhythm of the wind that brushed up against her face, further cooling her iced blood. The plane angled right, then left and continued this pattern four times. Nausea rose through Naomi’s body.
Two minutes passed.
The ticking of her bedroom clock mirage her thoughts and resonated through her room like a time bomb; each consecutive sound tearing apart the fragments of her life into even smaller pieces. Rain weighed down the body of the plane, and the water cleansed the rough edges of her own scab, gasping with pain. Flames erupted from the outer lining of the engine and her insides drowned with the fire.
Cries continued to fall from the sky and sirens erupted underneath; flashes of blue and red reflected throughout her street. The ticking became louder and her heartbeat followed in its footsteps. She couldn’t see them but almost sense the cries emanating from above, like rats on a sinking ship.
The crash jerked away the black holes of her mind, and awoke the entire city. Flames of emotion erupted through the air; scraps of life ripping through her eyes. Guilt transcended out from each of her limbs. She reached out once again, and succeeded in grabbing a hold of her pills. Her internal panic was replaced by the horror outside. She took a deep breath in and paused, hoping the passengers could still breathe.