This week’s prompt was cribbed from Dante:
Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter
Quite fitting to my mood. I hit a funk yesterday afternoon and I’m not sure I’ve crawled out of it yet. (I may need to go write some purely-for-me brain candy and see if that helps.)
Here’s what bubbled up after thinking about the prompt.
Jack’s searching the faux flecked marble of the elevator floor. Looking for patterns. Or constellations.
He thinks he’s just found Orion when the lurch of his stomach alerts him to the elevator’s stop. The “4” above the doors flickers at him and blinks out.
Andrew, who’s been standing silent and stoic at his side up until now, shifts closer and takes his hand, grip cooler than usual, fingers damp.
The doors seem to take an abnormally long time to slide open. When they do finally split apart, Jack thinks the movement should really be accompanied by a long, low hiss. Or the serrated sing of metal. Maybe with a little somber music in the background.
But they move with the hush of well oiled mechanisms and open on a foyer that’s painted a pale cream and filled with the light of the midsummer sun.
Andrew tugs him from the elevator and Jack tilts his face toward the high ceiling and finds blue sky above him, divided by black metal beams arching like pieces of nouveau art from the top of each wall. The panes of glass set in the beams are so clear and clean, they may as well be an illusion.
There is part of him that had expected this floor to have no windows, to be full of dim light and dark wood paneling.
The darkest thing in the foyer is the directory sign on the wall in front of them.
Andrew’s staring at him, ghost of a smile on his mouth. “You were expecting something more funerary.”
Jack frowns but lets his protest die on his tongue. Instead, he raises their joined hands and places a kiss on Andrew’s knuckles.
Andrew smiles. It’s wide and bright and puts the sun to shame. “I have a good feeling,” he says—same words he’d said to Jack 12 years ago, on the night they’d met—and he tugs Jack’s hand, “Let’s get me to my consult,” checks the directory on the wall and heads in the direction of surgical oncology.