●Clothes Make the Man●
The morning comes too quickly and Magat feels a wreck as he gropes his bedside table for the alarm.
The act of sitting up proves to be an even more difficult task though. He sits in a slump, his body still half covered by the sheets. What time is it? What’s the day today? Is he home?
He’s sweating. His sleep tonight was dreamless and that always left him concerned whether what he woke up to was in fact, the dream.
But everything looked alright. Everything felt alright? He curses his nerves and rolls out of bed, determined to start his day.
His thoughts are more of the same in the shower but he is thankful the blast of cold water brought with it more clarity. Everything looks alright. Everything feels alright.
It was a mantra he became accustomed to, repeating this train of thought every morning. The routine was necessary, he thought. Being caught off guard was the one thing he didn’t want. Most people would probably feel the same if they stood a real risk of waking up in a different universe every day, unable to tell if it’s all in the imagination or not.
Ever since he met Mata-Usa, every morning played like the beginning of Bohemian Rhapsody.
Which is probably why he ends up humming the tune as he opens his closet to pick out something to wear for the day.
He picks out a set of clothes, seemingly at random and lays them on to the bed to get dressed.
He starts with his pants, the same pants he wore on that fateful night that changed his life. He sees the scuff on the pant leg he got from the fence of construction site that popped up on his regular route home that night. If it weren’t for the construction, he would have taken the same route home rather than that detour.
He puts on his shirt next. He frowns as the sleeves hug his arm tightly and the buttons up front are just the right fit. He had bought this shirt just a week before he disappeared for three years, and at the time he got it, it was a nice and comfortably loose. The shirt’s tightness again his body reminds him of how much he’s changed since then.
He goes to put his shoes on last, but putting them on takes him the longest.
Hi shoes look old but well maintained, and he takes some pride in that. He remembers the day his father gifted them to him exactly. Maharth Visalakshi was a very proper man and thought it was necessary his son had a proper pair of dress shoes for occasions that called for them. His dad scoffed at the notion of wearing sneakers with a button-down shirt even for just a ‘smart casual’ look.
At the time, he thought his dad excessive and did not wear the shoes often, partially just to defy him.
Thinking of it now, it was probably much better for him, as they are still in great condition. They’re one of the few things he really gets to make use of that remind him of his dad.
It’s not fair, he thinks bitterly, that his dad was stolen away from him like that. Everything looks alright. Everything feels alright. But everything isn’t alright.
He heads out for the day, hoping that maybe tomorrow, the universe he wakes up to is the same one he woke up in three years ago, before everything stopped making sense.