Friday, 18 January 2013

The next day (part 3)

Oscar picked the correct of the two identical doors which led from the sitting room, and found himself in a bathroom like none he had seen before. A large, round bath dominated the room, on a platform in the centre, with wood panelling around the edge. It had a headrest on one side with a small screen opposite it, so one could watch television whilst in the tub, he assumed. The taps were at the side, so that they wouldn’t get in the way of the bather’s head or feet. As Oscar moved into the room, he turned to the left and found a stack of neatly-folded, fluffy, white towels on a three-tiered heated towel rail. He set his wash bag on the floor next to the towel rail, then straightened up to survey the rest of the room. At the far side was a square sink, backed by a section of tan-coloured mosaic tiles. Next to this, Oscar noticed a curtain. Again, he felt a little uncomfortable being so nosey but this was a very curious place and it intrigued him. He hesitated only a second longer before navigating his way around the bath to the clean, white curtain on the other side of the room. The curtain was cleverly hiding… he would first have described it as a shower cubicle but it was more like wet room, with space for a family of four to all stand on the wooden slatted mat in the centre. Oscar correctly guessed that behind the door in the far corner of the room, he would find the toilet. What he did not guess was that there would also be a sink in there, a fresh supply of hand towels, a wide selection of soaps and lotions, and an automatic flush.

This was all a bit too much for poor Oscar, the man who lived alone in a thirty-year-old house in need of repair. Somehow he came to the conclusion that the best thing was to have a nice, relaxing bath, where he could soak away his worries.

As the bath was filling, Oscar experimented with the knobs and buttons next to the taps. One released scented bubble bath in with the water. By the time he’d realised what it was, it was too late to stop it so he accepted the fact that he was now going to have a bubble bath. Once in the bath, put his head on the cushiony-soft headrest, which was perfectly positioned to support him as he leant back and stretched out his limbs in the spacious, circular tub, completely hidden by pretty-smelling bubbles.

Oscar tried to rationalise what had happened over the last twenty-four hours, and what was happening to him now. It was difficult. Thinking warmer water might help, he sat up a bit to find a temperature control. The button he stumbled upon did not adjust the temperature but Oscar lay back as soothing, ethereal music reached his ears. He wasn’t sure where it was coming from, but he didn’t care. He didn’t care about anything now. He tried to, but it didn’t work. He tried to think about the journey he should have had home. He tried to think about his house, surrounded by armed guards. He tried to think about his office, now a pile of rubble. But he couldn’t. He even tried to think about how he should probably have called his mother. But even that didn’t interrupt the heavenly relaxation he was now experiencing.

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