I seldom leave the confines of my home. Since the fever, I’ve lost all sense of time—minutes slip into hours, day turns to night, summer to autumn. Oftentimes, I’m too weak to open a window on my own. Occasionally, the help does it for me, but I’ve noticed that I can’t feel the breeze that rustles the curtain. Nor do I detect even a hint of salt or pine that typically clings to the wisps of the morning’s mist and drifts about the room. The village carpenter, whose name somehow escapes me but shouldn’t, smelled of both. I long for the love I felt for him when he’d sit at my bedside, combing my hair with his slim, sap spotted fingers. Invariably, they would catch a strand and I would try my hardest not to wince. He doesn’t visit anymore.
When I do manage to leave my house, I find myself in the cemetery—sitting upon a stone bench, lolling about, or playing hide-and-seek with passers-by. I must be very good at it, because they never do find me. Only the crows manage to see my every move. They even confide their secrets in me. You wouldn’t think a bird has anything to hide, but they do.
When the fog begins to lift I’m able to see their legs—two figures standing on top of the roof.
Only once the sun is no longer shrouded in a haze can you see them clearly—an angel braiding a girl’s hair. I wish mine would come and do that for me. I can’t tell you exactly how long I’ve been waiting for him, but I do know it’s been more than an hour and less than one hundred years. The crows told me so.