Reception

When you come to, you find yourself surrounded by people. One of them is shining a small, very bright light into your eyes, and you screw your face up to try and get rid of it.

“Can you tell me your name?” asks a voice.

You’re lying on your back. It appears to be dawn, and you can see ceiling tiles above you.

“Where am I?”

“Tell me your name,” the voice repeats.

You mumble something that might be your name, and you say again, “Where am I?”

“You’re still in Pegasus Tower,” says the voice. “Can you tell me what happened?”

“Water,” you say. “There was water. A flood.” You blink and see that the voice belongs to a paramedic. There are three of them, and some men in overalls standing further back.

“Right. We need to get you into the ambulance.” A stretcher is wheeled in, and lift you – and the board you’re lying on – onto it.

You’re still not quite sure how it is you’re alive, but you are. “The basement. Davy,” you say.

“What’s that?” The paramedic stops his colleagues and leans close. “Is there someone else here?”

“The basement car park. There’s a homeless bloke. He sleeps down there sometimes. I … don’t know if he’s there, or not.”

“Someone will check,” says the paramedic, and then to a query from one of the workmen, replies, “Too early to say. Bang on the head, may be. They’ll run some scans at the hospital.”

The paramedics wheel you outside. The wind is still blustering, but it’s stopped raining. The street lights are still on, but the underside of the clouds is greying. You turn your head to the left and to the right. You can’t see any evidence of a flood around you. Certainly not anything that would be deep enough to burst the doors.

Was there a flood? It was raining. It was coming in through the doors. After that… the basement, the reception? It’s all a bit hazy now. You let your head drop back onto the stretcher. It’ll be fine: an hour or two in hospital, and go home, and sleep. You probably need to call Metcalf, mention the loose shutter door. You’re acting like a responsible employee. It’ll be fine.

You must have suffered some sort of concussion. You don’t remember it. Your head doesn’t even hurt. May be there’s another reason. May be you had a fit. You haven’t had one for a long time. You thought you’d grown out of them. If it was, then you might not be able to hold on to this job.

The ambulance doors shut, and the paramedic straps you onto the stretcher. The driver starts the engine, and the ambulance pulls away from Pegasus Towers.

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