gala-tea Gala Tea

Same place, different people. Maybe together, maybe scattered in time. But what is this odd corner of the universe? "You know it's easier to accept our failures sometimes, right? Bodies fail" "Then why are you here too?"

Science Fiction Not for children under 13.

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Look, like in the movies.

Two milk bottles. One bag of sugar. A package of toilet paper, 12 rolls. Silver-colored nails, only one ring. Maybe gold. 

She pays with cash, then leaves. 

On a Wednesday afternoon, the store is not crowded. Easier to rest for a while. Or maybe not.

"No, that's not true."

"How can you refute science?"

"It seems like a scam to me."

"People have done it and it works."

"Brainwashed possibly."

She stares at the window, never liked to take part in this type of things, trivial discussions. Better be focused, be the fastest cashier, not waste their time. Not that she could prove her fast abilities when there were no costumers.

"I'm telling you, it works. Just like in the movies."

"Not convinced."

Ringing bells, the door opens. Long black hair, sun glasses. A piercing sound, probably high heels. The steps take her away, near the fruit isle.

Soon, 1 kg of peaches and 2 kg of apples at the counter, but she doesn't pick the fastest cashier. 

"Stop reading those kind of things, it's pure bullshit."

"I bet what you read is bullshit."

The costumer runs her hand through her shiny black hair, impatient. This should take just 5 minutes. 

"Guys" she calls from the last counter at the left "Stop talking" They look at her, costumer included. "Stop" she whispers.

He mutters something and moves to his own spot.

A trace of a musky, heavy perfume, bells again. She leaves.

Not a regular costumer, It maybe takes a couple of weeks, and she appears again.The same sun glasses, her hair is a bit shorter.

She buys a dark yellow pen, flour and black candles this time. An odd mix.

"It's $30. Cash or credit card?"


But when she leaves, there's no bells, no perfume. It almost feels like a déjà vu, but there's something missing. As if she is watching from the outside.

"Why would someone use sun glasses when it's raining?" She whispers.

"Who used them?" He asks from his counter. But she doesn't hear that.

"So, you say that there's some fragments you're unable to erase? Is there something else?"

"That's pretty much it."

The man in a white coat writes something. There's something mechanic about his gestures. Fixed.

She touches her neck, looks up. "Is it really that bad? I mean, can't I just keep them there?"

The man keeps writing "Is not a good idea" He stops, sighs "Imagine if someone wakes up and suddenly there's these weird images flooding back, very confusing."

"Don't you insert new memories anyway? Couldn't it be part of those memories?"

"It doesn't work like that."

"But how can I be sure those are really my memories?"

Silence. The man puts some pills on the table. Black pills. "Take those. Today and tomorrow, before eating. We are gonna keep track on that."

And she does, there was no reason at all to not do it. The faster the better, that place is boring and she wanted to leave, once and for all. Too bright, too perfect. A scale model, almost.

But black pills. They don't work. Black candles come to her mind. Flour and a pen, she wonders what that means, if that's supposed to mean something.

"Do you think I can get candles in here?"

No answer.

When they ask her again if those fragments are still there, she lies. She pretends everything is gone, no trace, erased. And she keeps the three images to herself, maybe she expects something to make sense.

She is unsure if this little lie will get her in trouble, maybe stuck in there forever, but perhaps she can fool them this time and remain triumphant, even if this wasn't a competition of any sort. Just a pride thing, maybe.

And one day, she feels like she really has in her hands 2 black candles, a bag of flour and a yellow pen and it startles her when she wakes up, but was she really sleeping? Because the heavy, musky perfume lingers in the room and she thinks she's going insane.

When she tries to move, she feels the wires and by then she knows she is just leaving. She feels a lump in her throat, she should have told them the fragments weren't really erased. Too late.

She closes her eyes, says goodbye to the dead walls.

She looks at her reflection on the border of the metallic counter. Long black hair, familiar pale face, unknown amber eyes. She would look good with a pair of sun glasses. 

"It's $30. Cash or credit card?" 


There are lemons, bread, some bottles and toilet paper on the counter,"How can you refute science?" She hears in the distance. It makes more sense now.

Jan. 31, 2019, 2:18 a.m. 0 Report Embed Follow story
Read next chapter Drifting facades

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