Idiopathy by Byers Sam

Idiopathy by Byers Sam

Author:Byers, Sam [Byers, Sam]
Language: eng
Format: epub
Published: 2013-09-17T16:00:00+00:00

Late in the evening Daniel’s father called to say he’d died. This was something he was periodically inclined to do.

‘I’ve been counting,’ he said. ‘My pulse is gone and I haven’t taken a breath since lunch.’

He was specific about the symptoms of his death. A whiteness; voices; the presence of other souls.

‘Dad,’ Daniel said.

‘I haven’t got a pulse. I’m not breathing. It sounds like I’m breathing but it’s not really air. I cut my finger and it didn’t bleed and when I went outside nobody could see me.’

‘You were outside?’

‘But it wasn’t outside. It couldn’t have been. They couldn’t see me.’

‘Dad,’ Daniel said. ‘If you were really dead, how could you call to tell me?’

A pause at the other end of the phone. A deep breath. Daniel could picture him – thin as a sparrow’s leg in frayed pyjamas; his skin soapy-pale; slightly hunched, as if he had to lean into the call to achieve maximum connection. His answer took several seconds to arrive, a space of time in which Daniel imagined he could hear his father’s thoughts as they ground against each other, as one struggled to beget another.

‘They let you,’ his father said at last. ‘They give you one phone call.’


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