I came back from the bank as the sound of the building’s fire alarm began piercing the air. I looked up quickly to see if I could see smoke. There was none but the blue sky above the building shimmered and distorted like the air above a molten car hood on a scorching summer day.

I walked back to the place designated as the fire drill “meeting place”. I watched the side door where the stairwell exit emptied into the parking lot, expecting my coworkers to begin streaming out. Several seconds and then minutes passed. I saw the shadow around the door widen quickly and just as quickly narrow again; almost as though the building had inhaled.

My brain began clicking through various scenarios and kept clicking like a well-oiled wheel-of-fortune. I could not make it stop. Nothing it came up with was a satisfying explanation.

Suddenly it stopped on one so outrageous that my heart began fluttering and took up the rapid click of the wheel. A flush of anxiety burned up into my face.

What made me think that!?

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