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Wednesday, 27 October 2010


The building was old, narrow, tall. Maybe four floors, but the gap between them wasn't consistent so it was difficult to tell. A narrow pathway ran down the side of the building, with overgrown trees and bushes on the left of it. The building only had windows looking out over the pathway, and not all of them had glass in. Every level was one long narrow room, filled with miscellaneous junk and dust. Bare floorboards. Bare walls.

A small, old doll lay just inside the entrance, covered in a dry brown, brittle-looking growth, like dead sponge. Although I'm sure it was dead I didn't want to touch it, because I strongly suspected it might turn out to be a dormant fungus. There was someone else in the building with me; a woman, I think. A friend whose name I'd forgot. The second/middle floor had an old tv and Megadrive games system in it. We fought over the controls.

I couldn't access the top floor from inside, so I clambered up the side of the building. Most of the top windows were filled with birds, sleeping in nests. They were all regimented and ordered, something that shouldn't have been possible naturally, which asked two questions. The first: if it was natural, what did this say about the intelligence of the birds responsible? Secondly: who would come to an otherwise abandoned building purely to neatly organise bird nests, on a floor you couldn't reach from inside the building?

Most of the birds appeared to be pigeons. I looked in one uncovered nest to see a batch of eggs. One had turned black. In a nearby nest a pigeon woke up and stared at me. It had a black-feathered face. The other birds looked like they might be blackbirds, though they were all asleep - unless they didn't have heads at all. Their feathers shone with the sort of rainbow that plays across the surface of oil.

Something else about the house - it made want to tear the woman apart and make love to the remains.

The most surprising thing is, I wasn't even dreaming.

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