The hands on the clock said 1:15. A half hour later, they said 1:15. Even a broken clock is right twice a day, he said. He was full of platitudes like that. This is going to be a long meeting, she thought.
The wheels on the bus go round and round. The hands of the clock stay frozen in time. It would be 1:15 forever. She would sit in this chair. She would shed one billion skin cells onto the plush Persian carpet covering the floor of his office. The sun would move across the sky. Shadows would fall through the plantation shutters making slanting lines that would stretch for eternity. Time was a modest maiden who would sit quietly waiting for permission to bloom.
She would turn to bones in the chair, bones would turn to powder, and 1:15 would mark the place int he vastness of the time-space continuum where she slipped the wheel.
If she had known there were only three wishes, she would have chosen differently. Obviously. But there had been no instructions, no bullet points. It was another example of the inefficiency of the system. Some opined that the system had grown too big for its own britches, that the safety measure and stop gaps had gotten out of hand. Cynics said the lawyers were behind the crack down. Others insisted the problem was created from a complete lack of imagination. Governor Moonbeam was retiring after eight decades of public service. Some said he would be missed. He told his successor, young Kennedy, “don’t screw it up.” She presumed he meant the ten wishes stockpile of surplus gold. But there were no guarantees, if the three wish rule was enforced. So far, everyone operated on the honor system. She was down to one wish. The books said choose happiness. The ads said choose gluttony. She was pretty sure there was some middle ground. One wish. Puppy breath. Snow. Public nudity. Art. Music. Zero gravity. Invisibility. Hemingway in his Spanish Civil War days. Elizabeth, the Virgin Queen. The Columbia Gorge at sunrise in her living room every morning. Polar bears. Bumble bees. Tree toads. Wild salmon. Stories, stories, stories.