ben had never really liked waiting rooms. they had tried with the furniture, but when the floor was frosted with vinyl and everything was cast in oversaturated shades by painfully fluorescent lamps, you didn’t feel all that reassured. for all you knew this was a study of the memetic effects of near-greyscale. some part of elaborate hoax.
it wasn’t the lack of colour, he decided. it was that there was just enough colour to make you long for more – and yet there was a poisonous pallor between you and it, an aching silver mist, semi-opaque in its cruelty. visual equivalent of drug withdrawal.
the air conditioner whined, bemoaning silence.
there was a woman painted à la picasso on the wall – her (its?) eyes and nose and lips, everything, skewed every which way and forced into right angles in the bleakest caerulean shade. it was the only portrait in the room. the others were photographic windows – into the broken sun, its arterial vigour spattering the hor