Room 451She opens her eyes, not yet daring to escape from the warm comfort of the light gray sheets. After a few deep breaths and a half-hearted attempt to fold back the cover she sits upright on the bed, her gaze still full of sleep, eyes squinting in the late morning sun shining through the large windowfront.
She makes her way across the cold floor barefooted, yawning, and grabs a glass of juice out of the fridge.
The cold from outside makes its way through the window, creating a subtle chill when she turns her back to the kitchen, facing the outside world, sipping the red juice.
Far below her, in the willow trees around the tower, the last patches of snow are slowly melting away. Down there, beyond the tall fences of the garden, pillars of black smoke rise into a sky covered by ash gray clouds. Some of them emerging from houses missing their roofs, some from the few open places inbetween.
From up here, everything looks so small. A tiny, broken down house on a street corner, the warm flickering light of a campfire inside, barely visible. A small group of black shapes making their way along the deserted main street, stopping here and there, perhaps looking through the remains of what used to be a building.
After what seems like only a few seconds she averts her eyes, grabs a book from the top of a pile lying next to a blue armchair, and turns around to face the wall behind the bed.
Her eyes wander across the words written above it in bold black letters.
Our civilization is flinging itself to pieces. Stand back from the centrifuge.