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It takes a whole minute for me to spell one word correctly. My eyes feel so dry that I swear my eyelids are scraping over them each time I blink.

Forget this.

I close my laptop and shuffle out of my room. I don't even bother to change my house clothes before I grab my purse and leave the apartment.

Fresh air. That's what I need. Some fresh air and then maybe I can get past the first sentence of that paper.

My search for fresh air ends up being harder than I thought it would. Apparently, the pollution in the city is bad today, but how could I know? I've been in my room all day.

The putrid air ends up making my throat feel sore after a while, so I give up. I head back home.

I can't even do something as simple as breathing air right today.

My mood is even darker than when I left the apartment complex, so it's hard to tame my stomping feet as I climb up the stairs. The elevator has been broken for three years, maybe even more. At this point, I probably wouldn't even notice if it was fixed.

On my way up, eyes looking down at my feet, incoherent angry words being mumbled under my breath, someone almost bumps into me. No contact is made, but I look up in shock at the almost impact. My surprise disappears when I notice it's just the kid from next door. He bows over and over, apologizing profusely.

I say a polite greeting even though I don't want to and carry on my way, mumbling under my breath again. It must be nice to be so innocent and naive, not corrupted by the real world yet.

"Oh, pollution is bad today. You're going to need a mask," I call out after. He lifts up a black mask from around his neck as he sweetly smiles back. He still thanks me, despite my advice being worthless.

I turn away and sneer. "Nice of your mom to keep you prepared."

It's moments like these when I'm cussing out a high schooler just because he's the slightest bit more organized and prepared for the world than I am, where I miss my dad. Of course, he is only a text message away, but still. It would be nice to come home and have food that's actually good for me already made.

I shuffle my shoes off, ignoring the hairball of a cat rubbing against my legs, and drag my feet back to the same place I started.

This time I get through two more sentences.

Somebody save me.


A day later, and one full paragraph of seven sentences done, I'm leaving my part-time job at the karaoke bar. It's a busy night, full of loud and obnoxious people whose sole purpose is to get drunk and make the rooms a mess. A mess that I so fortunately have to clean.

When I look down at the glowing screen of my phone I can't help but feel betrayed. The latest deposit into my bank account is much lower than expected.

"That's it?"

I stare at the screen for longer than necessary, as if to see if I'm missing something or the numbers will suddenly change.

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