There were 14 coasters in the house, all of them piled up like a tower of cards. They could topple at any moment and Jenny was watching them carefully. A video of someone whistling the national anthem was playing on the laptop behind the tower. It was 3am and Jenny couldn’t sleep.
She didn’t know why they had 14 coasters when she was certain they didn’t have 14 glasses or mugs to go on them. She thought that maybe they had been bought as house-warming presents by several well-meaning relatives. Jenny wished she could be sleeping instead of counting coasters, building fragile towers and watching failed Britain’s Got Talent entrants.
Every time she tried to close her eyes and get some rest she kept thinking about how she might die in her sleep. If she died in her sleep there would be no one to find her until 4 days later when her flatmate returned. She didn’t want PJ to find her like that.
She didn’t know why she kept thinking about death, she could be happily daydreaming about ice cream or whatever and then she’d be reminded that she could drop dead. It didn’t matter that it was very unlikely considering her age and general health but that didn’t stop the tight-chested panic that set in when she lay her head on the pillow. She thought she might feel better if she distracted herself but even after making the coaster tower the thought was still lodged in her mind.
So no sleep for Jenny. She wasn’t sure if she could last 4 days until PJ came home and could comfort her in the way best friends can, but it seemed she might find out. Logically, 5 days without sleep was more dangerous than going to sleep and hoping she wouldn’t die but the sensible part of Jenny’s brain wasn’t exactly pulling its weight at that moment.
Tales written from a prompt in just 10 minutes.
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