The morning I saw Lana Flaningan, there wasn’t any sound but the breaking of her thatched roof; the panels on my head glimmered.
Lana Flaningan smothered a rabbit by tying his legs up and cupping his snout for twelve minutes straight. The rabbit squirmed and Lana pressed her chest against the rabbit’s head the way she used to embrace it. Just this time she did not let go. I froze in a gape at her.
Twelve minutes was also how much it took that rabbit to catch the flying Smiles. It was an annual race, the 458th to be accurate. It was sparsely attended because the Lord had just passed and people needed to bathe when the sun went down. The crowd all brought their fans. And the breeze from those fans cracked on their head. It was a decaying hot twelve minutes.
Lana was watching. Her rabbit did not win. She had measured, it would take her rabbit fourteen minutes to catch the flying Smiles. But she couldn’t foresee that my rabbit would join the race. She couldn’t imagine that I would participate. She couldn’t fathom seeing me again. She couldn’t think that I still existed. She couldn’t grasp that this half of her survived her cutting it-me off. She couldn’t understand herself still breathing after killing off it-her.
But I did survive. And my rabbit won the race. It took him twelve minutes. And Lana couldn’t take it that this rabbit she used to sing rhymes to would surpass hers, which she fed broken glass to before the show so it got angrier and angrier and run for the life of it because the glasses tore its stomach, it ran and ran, its eyes screened by the rage and its nose pulling towards the only object in the world that promised not to hurt it. But it lost. And the hatred transferred to Lana Flaningan.
I did not know why or how she found me – she must have found me before finding my rabbit.
For I knew if she did not kill the rabbit she would kill me once again, I stood watching.
Then I realized she did not look for my rabbit, it went to her.
We smelled the same, Lana Flaningan and I.
Just that I’m already dead and she hasn’t yet.
The pannels on my head, they are not pannels, they are Lana’s tears.
And they glimmer.
For Lana is crying for me now.
The only friend she has ever known.