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Time Lapse

Kristina England | Alberto Pessoa

Day One:

We hear noises outside the office window.

Tyler says to come look.

Something is going on outside.

We see yellow and brown for the rest of the day.

Day Two:

The noises are louder. The sight is greater.

Day Three:

Sara brings a camera. She takes photos from various angles and texts them to her husband.

“I’m thinking of putting together a time lapse video.”

I laugh. She purses her lips.

“Oh, you’re serious.”

Day Four:

The boss comes out of his office and approaches the window where Tyler and Sara stand, staring out. It has become their lunchtime ritual. They don’t say anything to each other. They just watch and Sara continues her journey of images.

“Don’t you have anything better to do?”

“But it’s bigger!” they both say a little excitedly.

The boss shakes his head, walks into his office, and closes the door.

I think of joining him, but I don’t like him, so instead, I go for a walk outside and pass the reason of excitement.

When I come back in, Sara mentions I am now “officially” part of the time lapse video.


Day Five:

“They’re flattening it.”

“That’s nice.”

Day Six:

“I wonder what they’re doing,” Tyler says, hands in pockets.

Heads bob up and down.

“I think it’s pretty obvious,” I say.

Heads turn, eyes angle at me.

Day Seven:

“It’s back.”

I sigh, put on headphones.

Day Eight:

The boss opens his door to leave for lunch. A ponytail has joined the two heads. It is Jenny from Billing.

“Enough,” he says and walks over to the window.

“But it’s growing and shrinking.”

“That’s what it’s supposed to do.”

I smirk.

“But it’s so big!”

Night Eight:

I bring my family over to the office. My kids stare out the window.

“It’s so big!”

My wife turns and looks at me.

“You brought us to see a mound of dirt.”

I laugh. “Yes. It’s construction. They’re building another building.”

I glance over at the bulldozer, usually pushing away debris, now resting for the night.

My wife rolls her eyes.

I stare up at the windows where the heads are no longer bobbing.

They are home with their families. Some are enjoying the night, others are dealing with their own debris.

Before leaving for the day, there was a special meeting. Sara shares unexpected news. Tyler already knew.

That’s why I’m out here now. That’s why I’m staring at the mound. I’m trying to make sense of it all.

My smile fades.

Day Nine:

Sara is by herself. Tyler has called out sick. The mound seems heavier.

I walk over to the window and see moistness in Sara’s eyes.

“It’s just the only thing I can think about right now…” she says.

I nod and look at Sara’s hair. Soon it will fall out. Soon the chemo treatments will catch up with her auburn locks just as the leukemia has caught up with her hips. I feel bad about congratulating her on the weight loss a week ago. I want to take it back, but know I can’t.

I nudge Sara’s arm. “Can I see the time lapse video when you’re done?”

“Yeah. Definitely,” she says, smiling out at the mound. “It’s going to be great.”

I nod. “Of course it is.”

About Kristina England

Kristina England resides in Worcester, Massachusetts. Her writing is published or forthcoming at Crack the Spine, Extract(s), Gargoyle, The Hessler Street Fair Anthology, The Quotable, Yellow Mama, and other magazines. Find her on her blog.

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