It snowed heavily and for a long time, the first snow since the accident. We all said that it was beautiful.
I made a snow-person in the front yard. Although I'd been told to expect a sense of unreality, I was surprised when it came to life.
“Why am I alive?” the snow-person asked me.
“I don’t know,” I said.
“What will happen when I melt?”
“I don’t know,” I said. Usually it's too warm here for snow. The white covering on the lawn was already starting to peel back at the edges.
I did not explain about freezers, but somehow the rumour reached the snow-person, who had taken on the name of Percy.
“Do you have a freezer in your house?” Percy asked me.
“I do, but, um, it’s full right now.” This was true; it was half-full of frozen dinners and half-full of compost waiting to go out.
“Oh,” Percy said, with brightening eyes, “you mean someone else is already living there.”
“Yes,” I said, and then to avoid digging myself in any deeper, “but she’s moving out, so I guess you can move in if you want.”
We carefully packed Percy into a cooler and then into the clean freezer. We waved goodbye and shut the door. A moment passed. There was a hesitant scraping from inside. I opened the freezer.
“Thank you for the ice cubes,” said Percy. “I’m having fun with them.”
“No problem,” I said. I shut the door.
A little while later, I thought I hear scratching. I opened the door.
“It’s very dark in here,” said Percy. “Could I have a light?”
I found an LED penlight and handed it into the freezer. “Thank you,” the snow-person said humbly.
The next day, a friend brought over some ice cubes in the shapes of animals, dyed with food colouring. Percy thanked her almost too effusively.
On the third day, I woke up early to the sound of scratching. I lay there for a while trying to go back to sleep, and then I got up and put on my bathrobe.
“This is no kind of life,” said Percy when I opened the door. “Take me out.”
A few mounds of snow remained. We tried to make a comfortable spot in the yard, heaping up some of the remaining snow into a low fortification. Percy set out the colourful animals and moved them about a bit.
“There are bigger freezers,” I admitted finally.
“What do other people in my situation do?”
“I don’t know.”
“What happened to the one before me?”
“The one living in your freezer before me?”
“Oh! Um.” I saw Percy’s face shift through one emotion, then another, and finally become blank. Or perhaps it was just beginning to melt.
“Do you think you could find out about the bigger freezers?” the snow-person asked, stacking up the ice cubes very slowly.
“Sure.” I said.
I went inside and Googled freezers and things coming to life. I fiddled with the thermostat. I watched some TV. I dozed off for a bit on the couch. I woke up hungry and warmed up one of the defrosted dinners from the fridge. I ate about half and threw the rest away. Then, to help my digestion, I went for a walk in the sun.
Crossposted from Dreamwidth (http://radiantfracture.dreamwidth.org/3