I ran downstairs to find a box stacked on one of the couches. I overturned it, throwing out the pile there of old clothes onto the floor, and put the cat, coat and all, inside. With the top flaps of cardboard folded over each other, I looked to my bike.

The cardboard would melt in my lap as I drove.

I had a second coat as I usually did, waterproofed as well. I slipped out of it and wrapped it over the box. Just a black tee covering me now, my arms burned on the air.

Man, I loved winter.

Couldn’t think about that now. My bike groaned to life with the rustling cat-box snug in my lap. I could manage this. No light, low fuel, bare skin on the frozen rain. I would be fine.

I rolled until the front door was in my path. Then, I rocketed out.

Let’s make it fast. I was going home.


After a few miles of rain and road, I slowed down in front of the apartments.

They had cleaned up since I lived here. The homeless had been run out from near the apartment entrance, I noticed. As I pulled in and parked, I made a dizzy dismount. The automatic space lowered my bike into the asphalt behind me. With the box in my hand I approached the locked rotating gate.

I swiped my card and received a loud buzzer.

“You are not permitted to enter this building, Frode,” the Smiler replied. His little face appeared on the card reader. Continue reading