Chapter 2

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Chapter 2

The closed shutter makes five lines of sunlight on the ceiling of my room.

I'm surprised to see them.

I'm surprised to see anything.

I find that opening my eyes is the most surprising thing of all. Not only because I know that I shouldn't be here, but also because it feels like up until today, I've never opened my eyes in quite the same way.

I feel—I struggle to put it to words—there's no way to describe perfection. Perfectly free. Perfectly satisfied. Before now, everything was heavy, weighing on me, pulling me down. I can finally see clearly now.

But something feels weird.

I notice it, on my bedside table.

There're usually small, plastic figurines of Harry Potter characters which we received with the grocery shopping last September. Of course, I collected them all religiously. Now each one of them—about two dozen—is hovering, suspended twenty centimeters in the air.

I'm completely calm. This isn't really happening.

An upward movement catches my attention. The five airplane models which I built with papà and which normally sit quite still on the shelf above my desk begin floating buoyantly a meter over the floor.

Right next to them, in the air, are my shoes, laces pointing up—I don't remember taking them off last night—and books, all my books and notebooks hang in the air, some with the pages spread, others closed. My swimming trophy is up by my phone, socks—several different socks that had gone missing under the bed—framed photographs, desk lamp and laptop.

Everything's suspended, swaying and moving very gently in an upward motion. I sit up in time to notice that my bed—with me inside it—is rising too.

I'm not as alarmed as I should be because I know this is a dream. The kind of dream that believes itself entirely. The ceiling comes closer and closer. Everything touches it with feathery gentleness, like helium balloons. I reach out my hand to stop myself from hitting the ceiling.

The coarseness of the ceiling under my fingers, that's when it feels too real. A little doubt creeps in. Time stands still for a moment and then—

Everything—everything—remembers gravity and falls to the floor with an ear-splitting bang and several loud clatters. The air leaves my lungs when the bed crashes down, its wooden leg splinting. The floor is like a pile of debris of all the things I own, now shattered.

I sit there, trying to regulate my crazy heartbeat. I'm now somewhere between still hoping this is a dream and fearing that it isn't.

No one comes into my room following the noise, so maybe this isn't really happening. Then again, it may be late. My parents are probably at work and Antonio—I don't know where Antonio could be.

I peel the duvet off my body, running my hand over my stomach. Yesterday—

If this isn't a dream, and that wasn't a dream, does this mean I'm hallucinating? I continue to run my hand over my stomach, up to my chest. There's a bit of pain, perhaps. I lift up my T-shirt and look down.

A pinkish line runs from my navel up to my chest. It might as well be a scratch—received from Rosita?

Rosita isn't the type of cat who'd ever bother with scratching people—that kind of practice is beneath her.

I lace my fingers through my dark, curly hair. Yesterday evening, at the river, I remember how it felt to have the knife part my flesh. I try not to look at the floor as I hug my knees to my chest.

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