The other night.

“I had been staring at a museum entry all about Anne Boleyn one early winter afternoon. Her eyes would not let me go, as much as I wanted to. Her face seemed far more devilish than I could have ever envisioned. Perhaps that’s why the King fell in and out of love with her. The museum was in a low-roofed, stone building and if I remember correctly, it wasn’t the warmest of times outside of my clothes. I turned around and was walking towards a shopping centre.

Out of nowhere, a woman, whose face was gaunt and her eyes told me before she’d even opened her mouth that she wasn’t “all there” mentally or anywhere near as stable as I could imagine. She came over and asked me for “face” at the same time as stroking her cheek with her thin, bony hand. Her teeth were as thin as her face, and few and far between. She seemed as if she could have once been a beautiful person, but those days were long gone now. She kept on asking me for “face”, still stroking; I can only imagine that she was trying to incite some feeling back into those narrow cheeks, barely supported by her cheek bones.

Unexpectedly, a man appeared and we discussed what she could have been wanting. “Perhaps she needs help”, I say to him, but the tone of my voice and my body language showed how unwilling I was to help. I never like to go out of my way for beggars or people on the street. There’s just something that I find too disgusting and creepy to be able to do anything about it.

She wandered around the shop, we followed her inside and wanted to make sure she didn’t hurt herself or anyone else. I noticed the staff staring at her and that they had got the attention of the security guard with their walkie-talkies. She was on her way over now.

Meanwhile, the “face” lady was still wandering seemingly aimlessly around the shop. Perhaps she knew what she was looking for. I certainly didn’t. My companion had disappeared, but I didn’t need him anyway. She was picking up pens and pencils and went to put them into blazer pockets, if she’d been wearing a blazer, but instead dragged them along her hips up towards her waist slowly. She asked me again for “face” but instead of replacing the pencils and pens she dropped them onto the floor. Hearing the noise, she was spooked and looked around to determine the source of the noise.

With this deer in headlights appearance, she looked so fragile. The fragility kept on transforming into instability, insanity and then back again. The security guard came over and she attempted to move us both along – she assumed that I was with her. To her credit, I was attempting to look after her, even if I hadn’t yet realised it. She soon left the shop and I was glad to be rid of the piercing gaze she managed to give even though her eyes didn’t look; they saw.”


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