The cartoon caricature of a dragon dreamed up from a child's pencil drawing danced on the door knob in front of me. Eyes unfocused, I watched as it twirled in forewarning of what lay beyond the door. The stop sign it held up for me made me pause upon opening. “Open the door, Jane, I need the rest of my things”, barked the voice beyond the lines that weaved and wavered behind my blurred vision. The dragon still held the stop sign, and I still held my breath, watching as a small cartoon hand counted down in feverish intensity. “Just one sec,” I said, words catching in my mouth, and resumed my countdown. The dragon flipped around the sign revealing “go”. I moved fast, unlatching the door and throwing the backpack packed full of plastic euphoria bagged in plastic, perfectly bundled at Harold who still lingered in the hallway. It hit him in the abdomen, caught with his head down gaze to the ground, gun in his hand glistening in the florescent overhead. Just as swiftly as it had struck, I had slammed the door closed once more, and locked the latch. I thanked the dragon, and he smiled in response, and pointed towards the bathroom door. “Move, get down”, I could make out, marionette of movement on its lips, and dove for the bathroom door as shots rang out and lead landed among the void I had left in my leap...and I landed lightly among the void I had left in my mind through breathing in dragon's smoke and playing with fire and ice.
30 October 2015