The early-morning chill has settled on the ground, every blade of grass half-white with frost. Shreds of green peek through, the occasional daisy hidden from sight under the frost. The grass hasn’t been cut in days and if I ventured over the field more it would reach up to my ankles, easily. It makes it the perfect setting for a solitary morning.

It’s still dark out, the kind that would nearly require streetlights, and the sky is lightening, bleeding strands of light over the horizon. Fog hangs over the city, blurring everything out, and the air is crisply biting at my face.

My gloves are thick, heavy, and the heat of the coffee flask seeps through them, warming me. It’s the strangest sensation, but I feel both warm and cold. I can almost taste the coffee, rich and scalding hot and sending warmth through my veins. There’s potential for rain in the air, and if I listen hard enough I think I can hear thunder in the distance.

I am quite alone right now. In this weather and at this time of the day everyone else is at home, bundled up inside the warmth. I can smell a woodfire burning in a nearby house, and just for a moment I’m envious.

A blackbird sweeps down from a close tree, settling on the ground and peeping shyly at me. It settles in place, ruffling its feathers and then sitting still, looking alert.

Footsteps sound behind me, slow and quiet over the thick grass.

You’re here. Finally.


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