THE COLD INSIDE
By AL BRUNO III
Monday November 7, 1994
Carol Bloom called her son for the third time as she opened the curtains to let the pale light wash in. “Tristam. It’s time to wake up. Come on, time for school. You’re gonna be late.”
“And I have so much…” The figure under the covers groaned, “…to look forward to.”
She pulled a pillow from the bed and hit him with it, “Let’s go.”
“All right I’m awake.” Tristam sat up, blinking and groggy. The memories were already fading but he did his best to hang on to the scattered images. The dream- if it was a dream was the same one he’d been having for weeks now. Always he was flying but every night the location was different, sometimes it was his neighborhood, sometimes it was downtown Albany and sometimes it was high above the clouds, dodging bolts of lightning and melting through the raindrops. He’d read somewhere that when you dreamt of flying you were really dreaming about sex. He thought to himself, No way am I that horny.
“Hit the shower I’ll get breakfast started.” Carol left the room, “No falling back to sleep or I’ll have your sister dump a glass of ice water on your head.”
Tristam shivered at the thought, Pam lived for stuff like that. Grumbling, he rolled out of bed. He caught his reflection as he yawned and scratched his balls.
That’s yearbook photo material right there.
His short, black curly hair had gone wild in the night. His blue eyes were thin, blinking slits. His mother had always told him how handsome he was but Tristam suspected every mother might say something like that. One of those unwritten rules he supposed.
Tristam gave his reflection the finger and left the room. His bladder groaned, the bathroom door always seemed further away at six o'clock in the morning. The door opened, Pam stepped out, a yellow robe clung to her lean, athletic form. Her dark hair hung around her face in damp curls “Well, well, well, look who’s awake!”
“You better have left me hot water.”
“You're not the only one who can oversleep you know.”
“That’s no excuse. You know I was supposed to have first dibs on the shower this morning. We have a schedule.”
“I’m not going to be late because of you. At least I have an excuse for being tired, I have a social life.”
“Besides,” The door of her room closed, “it’s not like anyone cares how you smell, you could smell like roses and the only people that would talk to you would be the rest of the Loser Patrol.”
He shouted after her, “Up yours!”