Black Glass (Prose)

I sit at my desk, typing away, in the silence of our office. Three walls surround me; this is my cubicle. To my right, is a picture of my girlfriend. She now lies flipped down.
I keep typing.
I need to fill out the data on an excel sheet. To my left is a stress ball and a cold cup of coffee.
The thrumming begins.
I look up and stop typing.
“What is that?”
“Huh?” Camila says from across my cube.
“Nothing,” I grumble.
I need to finish these damn reports.
But there’s this deep, low bass; a pulsing droning on like someone is drumming in the walls.
Wrong formula.
Why is the formula always fucked up?
“Don’t you hear that?”
“Hear what?” Camilla asks.
“That noise.”
The thrumming makes my damn head pulse. My skull is swelling, moving with the sound. I can feel my brain expand and shrink, pumping and growing with the noise. It hurts and it makes my vision blur.
“What the fuck is that?”
I swallow. Type, Keep typing. You have to get this done. Your have to take care of your family.
But it thrums and I don’t know a damn thing about excel and accounting.
“What are you mumbling?” Camila says.
Mumbling? I wasn’t mumbling. I’m typing and that damn noise is getting louder. So loud, I can’t hear my keyboard.
I hate this place. Why am I even here? It’s because of my girlfriend and that needy ass kid. I tried to do animation and graphic design. And by try, I mean I thought about it, drew a little, and took a class or two.
I’m not cut out for it. I’m not cut out for anything.
“I can’t concentrate,” Camila says.
“Who cares,” I answer.
“Just shut up.”
Who the fuck was she talking to?
I would tell her off but the beating continues, that rhythmic pulse. It’s the thrumming of a brain. I know, because my own pulses with it—growing bigger and shrinking down again.
I fucked up the formula again. I can’t get anything right.
Camila stands up, she’s peering over the cubicle wall. She’s angry, but her furious eyes and red face quickly turn pale.
I stand up too. My brain hurts.
“Don’t you hear it?” I ask.
She’s trembling. Her eyes are wide.
“What’s wrong?”
But she doesn’t answer me, she just screams and points. And then, as if a switch was flipped, her eyes turn white and her veins begin to show in her face.
They are dark and pulsing. She throws her head back and is now mumbling.
But something sharp and deliberate burns my scalp and my head throbs. It throbs so hard with the sound that I think my head will explode.
Camila is shaking now, she spasms, her mouth slack.
I try to scream, but I can’t. I feel my head tilt back, all the way so that I am looking up at the ceiling. Its black glass. Why is the ceiling black glass?
The pain doesn’t subside, and I feel powerless. My muscles seize and spasm and above me, I can see the faint pulsing of some odd light.
It’s not glass up there—it can’t be. It’s all shiny and undulating slowly. The mass is squirming and the dull lights inside it move with its form. I can see something writhing in the darkness above me now and for a moment, I can see the tendrils of some cybernetic monster slide across the black glass like some giant snake.
Everything burns. It hurts and my head throbs. My head snaps back down and I see     Camila, wires and tendrils connected to her head and leading back up to the black glass ceiling. They pulsated in time with her veins, pumping away, draining her.
My heart felt like it would burst now, because I could feel it too; the tendrils in my head, just under the skin.
And then it stops. That thrumming noise, the beat of my head, and the pain.
I’m sitting. I’m at my desk typing away. I stop. The excel sheet is finished. My coffee is still cold and the clock ticks on the wall—Eleven pm. The office is quiet and I look up to see only a regular white ceiling.
“Holy shit,” Camila says, standing and peering over at me. “We sure put in some hours.”
I blinked at her. She had bags under her eyes and pale, clammy skin. How much time had passed?
“What’s wrong with you?” she asked.
I shook my head and rubbed my eyes, hoping the formula wasn’t wrong.
“Nothing,” I said. “Just feeling drained.”

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