“A Small Black Hole” by Stephen Hastings-King

Then the anxiety which had been floating around definitively lands on his mouth. It becomes a small black hole. He feels himself being pulled in.

He reaches the back like hitting a padded wall. He bounces off and lands in a pile of letters.

As he thinks: “This is a pile of letters,” the letters arrange themselves into “This is a pile of letters” and disappear.

There is the sound of gumball dispenser machinery. More letters pour down from above.

He thinks “This is a kind of rain forest” and watches a kind of rain forest arrange itself and vanish.

When he wonders whether he can go deeper, staircases appear on either side of him.

When he considers the direction he wants to go, a powder snow of speculative sentences that articulate what he may find multiply and drift around the room.

When he begins to move toward one of the staircases every routine and subroutine of every motor action begins to say itself and letters swarm around him like bees.

In the distance he hears his name.

He sits at the bar fidgeting with a napkin. There is a pint of ale in front of him where none was before.

More fiction at Used Furniture.

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