• Vol. 07
  • Chapter 05
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Please Do Not Waste This Time

He wants a job, a visa. He wants to enjoy the button-gleam, to be among the collage of his friends. He sits on a stone. The water is glass and his clothing rippled. It’s the kind of day that brings out white boards in Tube stations, melts a Pritt Stick, makes people go a little mad.

Across the water people are laughing and pointing at something, he cannot see what. But an oddity or someone’s misfortune has brought them out of themselves. They talk and move their limbs as though they were all friends, but there are too many of them to all be friends. He wants to enjoy. He wants to cut carefully around himself and join them. He remembers the blue-grey sky that heralds a sweaty day. He remembers when Tusk said, 'Please do not waste this time.' He wants a job, a visa, to melt into his friends. It is a day for barbecuing, for agonising over a crush, for sitting in a circle and not drinking enough water.

He thinks: Can't I join the collage? He thinks: I want my share of the button-gleam, to laugh with a stranger and afterwards tell my friends what I saw. I want to glue myself. He thinks: Don’t I have the right to waste a little time?