Yuri thought himself in a position of inconvenience to say the least. But this time his renowned penchant for understatement was being tested. As he lay motionless on the floor of his 16th story, one bedroom apartment, in the same prone position he had occupied for the previous eighteen hours and thirty-six minutes (god bless his $2 watch from the market – who says you can’t get value these days he thought), his main concern was not why his body had suddenly refused to cooperate, but why no one seemed to care about his whereabouts.

No call from the warehouse foreman. No note from Mrs Donovan across the hall, even though he knew she would have been alone today on her daily 7.50am descent down the stairs. Nothing. If only he had plucked up the courage to give his number to that girl at the coffee shop then at least he would have been able to think of three people he could blame for not taking an interest.

If this had happened in his native Ukraine, he thought, he wouldn’t have been able to move for the commotion caused by his disappearance. As he chuckled at the irony of this last turn of phrase he shocked himself as the deep sound shattered the overwhelming silence. One more futile attempt to wiggle his toe followed before Yuri looked down at his watch once more. The second hand was no longer moving. 


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