I forgot my clarinet back at the hall. I guess I won’t be practising for a few days. A week. How long will I be gone, anyway? The concert’s in two weeks, so I guess I need to be back by then. A few days before for dress rehearsal, if the director’s even OK with that. I guess I should call Julia, let her know. She’d understand, right?

What does it matter?

I didn’t really care about this gig, anyway. Just paying the bills. I’ll be staying at my parents’ place anyway. I can line up a few more auditions while I’m there. I guess. Will I?

What does it matter?

I’m getting soaked. Figures I’d pick the one bus stop that doesn’t have a shelter. Should’ve gone down to central station, I could’ve waited indoors. Oh well. I guess my outside’s going to match my inside. Thanks, Mister Storm. You’re really a perfect mirror of my soul right now.

What does it matter? What’s the point of going there?

She’s gone. She’s fucking gone. No tearful goodbyes, no last kiss. No deathbed confessions. Just a call from Mom. Just one phone call and the fucking world’s melting away into a storm. Into darkness. Into nothing.

What does it matter? What’s the point of coming back?

We promised we’d both share a stage together, someday. We promised we’d share a home, someday. Should I even bother setting up auditions anymore? What’s the point of continuing to struggle here?

A beam of light cuts through the darkness. The bus stops. It heaves a sigh and opens its door.

A cheerful greeting. I hand in my ticket.

The storm doesn’t follow me inside — yet I still feel it with me.

What does it matter?