I'm sitting on the edge of the bed, dressed below the waist, sorting the straps of the bra I bought yesterday at the drugstore.
He watches me while he laces his boots. That's fine. I need the attention.
My spine arches as if a cold claw forces my shoulders back. My chin tilts upward. Oh, crap. Why now? The stains in the ceiling become figures with meanings I can't decipher. My voice wails from a forgotten time. "Greet these gates of Hades gaping."
I sag to the bed. Jerry kneels in front of me and cups my chin in his calloused palm. He says, "Honey, you all right?"
The way he leans backward tells me how wild my eyes are. I say, "Don't go to work."
He says, "Uh, I'm 'fraid I wouldn't be much good to you."
I say, "You'll die. You'll die!"
He asks, "Honey, you need some meds?"
I say, "I have a gift. I can see the future sometimes, whether I want to or not."
He keeps a distance, as if he's afraid I might get weirder. He says, "Gates of Hades? Sooner or later, I s'pose. I gotta go. Sorry." He leaves the room.
I cry, "No!" I run outside and stand in front of his pickup truck. I spread my arms to bar his way.
An old couple with a poodle passes us on the way to their car. The man nods and says, "Mornin' folks." His wife's glare makes him look away. I'm dressed in my thrift shop cargo shorts, naked from the waist up.