Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Well

"How did you do it?"

"I don't know."

It was dark, long after lights out, surrounded by their cellmates' snoring, sleeping forms.

"Do you think they didn't notice?"

"Do you think they did?"

"What do you mean?"

"Sarah, I think there's a very good chance that nobody is watching us. Dank hallways, dark rooms, dreary lighting... is all adds together to be a low-cost installation. Wherever we are, it's somewhere long forgotten."

"So our conferences..."

"They're excessively secretive."

"If you've put this all together, why do we keep meeting in that murk?"

"Easier for everyone else to take it seriously. Collude on the down low to keep everyone in the down low mindset. Not everyone is intuitively conspiratory, but if you put on a show that that's what you expect, they will too. Steven, I suspect, and Sylvia need the extra nudging. Sharon..."

"Has she said anything to you?"

"Not a word. Not to anybody, as far as I know. You?"

"No."

They lay silently for several long seconds, before Sarah whispered again.

"Do you know how you're doing it?"

"Not yet."

"Any guesses?"

"Speculation? Subconscious, if it's even me. Maybe it's a resonance or dissonance with whatever I do, whatever I can do, with whatever it is that stops us from..."

"Oh. ...Do you mind if I ask-"

"I don't mind, but even if I knew, I don't think it'd be safe for me to share. I've been here as long as I can remember, and I can remember your first day, and Sylvia's and Steven's.  Too many shapes of slumbering forms, and who knows who could be listening, lying in wait, wondering the very same thing."

"What about Sharon?"

"What about her?"

"Do you remember her first day?"

"No, I don't. Goodnight, Sarah."

"Goodnight, Seuss."

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