Synaesthesia Magazine Science & Numbers - Page 51

acceleration -'

'Shut up. Shut up.'

Her fear was distinctly tangible now.

'But of course,' he continued, 'the weight of the sky will crush the atmosphere. Basic science.'

He couldn't help adding this final bit in.

'And once compressed it'll have to find somewhere to go.'

He hoped Jacobsen had his finger on the button. It was all about the big finish.

'Please,' she croaked. 'Tell me.'

The request was unfamiliar, sounding completely alien in the great chasm which housed them.

He had her undivided attention at last. How mighty he felt.

'Well the atmosphere will surge into every building, smashing windows, breaking down doors - '

He heard her footsteps like matchsticks on a table.

Then, right on cue, Jacobsen administered the blow.

Window panes smashed all around them, the splintered fragments acting like silver fireworks.

'Oh,' she screamed, and from the distance in her voice, he knew that she was crouched down on the floor.

Again, a tremendous roar broke into the room, followed by a succession of crashes, some near, some distant.

Don't overdo it, he thought.

'I can smell it now. Yes. Yes! That terrible odour. My God, I think I'm drowning.'

He listened to her pathetic gurgles. He had to give it to her, she was convincing.

'Too much ozone. It'll kill us. We'll be the size of a house,' she said.

'Until we explode.'

And then he felt a grip, tight, meaningful as though she were clinging to a lone piece of rock. He was her saviour.

'Hold me,' she said.

He reached down stroking the top of her head. She had been reduced to an infant.

'Shhh,' he said. 'It'll all be over soon.'

Lauren Bell lives in Birmingham and is a recent graduate of Birmingham City University where she gained a First Class degree in English and Creative Writing. She is often drunk on inspiration and spends most of her time scribbling her ideas down on post-it notes before they fly away.

Illustrations: Risa Moro is a 23-year-old Masters student studying fashion, promotion and imaging at the University for the Creative Arts in Surrey.