The door opens. More people move in behind. The temperature drops another few degrees, but I feel warmer. No one moves. We all wait at the same speed, the speed of fresh snowflakes floating over ice floe streets.
Cold here, colder still, and still more outside, where winter has the city in its icy grip like death in the throat. I’m not the only one, and that’s no comfort – in fact, it makes this whole ordeal worse. The door opens and more take their place beyond the others.
A layer of sand coats my membranes. My skin glistens, protects the little creatures as they claim their prize. That is our bargain – a lifetime détente in exchange for a feast – although I had never been consulted. It’s an ancient marriage made by some outer space yenta.
Open the doors. Cause me to bathe once more in the full day. Get me out of here so I may remember my family. Let me cut in and hitch a ride with one of the others. Forget me not. No, inter me now. Close me in with my sorrow and allow me rest.