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Child Full of Stars
By S. A. Barton
Copyright 2013 S. A. Barton
Find other stories by S.A. Barton on his Smashwords profile.
I laugh, then cough. Both spray a fine spatter of bright blood onto the back of my hand. Even lying flat, belly-down on the damp alley pavement, a wave of dizziness washes over me. I blink, my attention caught in the layers of contrast: the wet glossy black of the street, the pale of my skin, the bright of the droplets of blood clinging to the fine dark hairs of the back of my hand like dew lit crimson by the last rays of a setting sun.
Only, there is no sun in this alley. As my heart beats I can feel the blood spurt from the hole in my belly, the cold night spreading outwards from my center toward my limbs, my head.
If I close my eyes I will sleep forever. I can feel it. Nobody will come to discover me far down this alley in the dark, away from the lights of the streets, the babble of the festival. I can hear them faintly, the rush of music, the voices raised in the moonless night of this world whose name I cannot remember.