I was walking alone. A little melancholy. Stopping to take pictures of moss and tree parts. Thinking about random things like how the light looked in the trees. Wondering if someone else would see it exactly the same way I did because their eyes aren’t physically the same as mine. The usual.
I wound up in this cave. Or maybe it was a loading dock. Or an overly modern office space. Or a construction site. Or all of those things at once.
It was very bright, full of desks and office furniture. There was a big printer there, with an overflowing trash bin full of crumpled papers next to it. I bent to pick them up. There was an error on the display so like the former PC tech that I am, I could not resist opening the printer up to clear a paper jam. There was a drawing on one of the papers jammed inside, with a bit of writing underneath it.
The handwriting was familiar. Like comic book block text. The drawing was a cartoon of a pair of brothers behind the wheel of a piece of heavy machinery, in superhero costumes. Prehistoric superhero costumes. Brightly colored. Very well drawn.
The handwritten note was about the brothers. It wasn’t finished. A sad note on a cheerful drawing.
A man came in and gave me a bear hug and I quickly put the paper in my pocket. He started to show me some elements of a project that he was excited about. Arm around my shoulder, occasionally stroking my neck or hair without noticing. Burying his fingers in my hair.
He finished showing me around, and we held hands as we looked up at some detail of the ceiling or maybe it was the sky. I asked if I could show him something I found in the printer.
I took the paper out of my pocket and put it on a counter. Smoothed it out. He smoothed out the drawing again and asked if I knew who drew it.
Of course I knew. It was his brother. The drawing was of the two of them. Both superheroes. Or maybe a hero and a sidekick.
We held hands, looking up into the night sky or maybe it was just the ceiling, and my hands shook as I started to tell him something about his brother.
The alarm went off before I found out what it was, but he was still holding my hand when it did.