He came in during the night shift, somewhere around half past two in the morning when everything was still in the hospital. It had been a quiet night so far, one of the nurses was making coffee in the break room, while the second one was reading the latest novel by her favourite horror story author and the third one was mentally going through the preparations for her husband’s birthday party that weekend watching her patients, those restless sleepers, tweaking the seating plan.

He arrived in the dead of night as an emergency patient who had woken up rather suddenly at home and couldn’t really tell what was wrong with him, only that something was wrong, that something felt most disturbingly wrong and he couldn’t for the life of him tell what it was. When he was brought in, he was still responsive, so they asked him: had he taken any drugs, pills or medication? No. Did he drink too much alcohol, any alcohol or did he ingest any other potentially harmful substances? No. Could it be anything he ate? No. Did he have a medical history, any diseases that he was aware of? No, not at all. He was put through all sorts of tests but his body was in perfect working order. Was he absolutely sure that the pain came from his stomach? Yes, he was. He had an enormous, twitching fist in his belly, opening and closing repeatedly, compulsively, making the rest of his body throb to its rhythm, making him sick to that very stomach. He couldn’t sleep, he couldn’t think, after awhile he couldn’t even focus on the doctors’ questions any longer

Naturally, something had to be done and because nobody could think of a better idea, they finally decided to empty his stomach, to turn it inside out. First, there was nothing but after some time from the tube leading out of his belly there started to flow strands of bright, walnut-coloured hair that, even though it was covered in all sorts of bodily fluids, lazily gleamed like the loveliest honey under the cold, artificial lamps hanging from the white-washed ceiling and there was no end in sight.


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