Fiction: That Time Before
By B F Jones
I was not that different to him as a kid. Not a million miles away. He was curlier. With a better nose. Lived in a smaller house, closer to the sea. Isolated in a not-yet-crowded plain of cheap builds with horrendous vis-a-vis. Did you know Cole from no. 25 has a moss green bathroom? Did you know he reads the Sunday Times Magazine on the toilet? On Monday mornings. I know. I don’t want to, but life has it that I live in a crowded area. That I have a potato-like nose. That at 49, I’m risking type 2 diabetes if I don’t watch it. I do like a lager or two. And waffles.
Previous me didn’t have a vis-a-vis. I doubt he knew what it was, aged 7, which is when he faded to black. Probably would have loved waffles if ever was offered one. I doubt that ever happened. I don’t know.
I remember him in strange mute fragments, in deep shades of maroon, in the jumpy fashion of a Super 8 movie abruptly coming to an end, the reel still running but the images gone.
I find it weird that I was him, once.
I remember him and he remembers the silence and that lone house on a slight incline.
In the top room, the one that was always dark, he could occasionally see the swiping beam of a lighthouse from that not-quite-concealed corner window. He always kept his eyes open wide, hoping to spot a boat listing on the mercurial sea, hoping to float away on it.