You work at a spa and someone walks in the door. He’s in a big long coat and it trails along the floor behind him as he walks towards you. You’re scared. It’s nearly closing time and you’re the only one at work — the one who’s been left to close shop when it’s all done. Normally, this is your favourite shift because your mean boss isn’t here to yell at you for not standing up straight and not keeping the desk in perfect order (because apparently the customers care about that sort of thing). It’s just you, and no one around to mess anything up. Right. That is what you want. And you hoped that in this final hour, 2:45AM to 3:45AM, you would be able to sit at the front desk quietly and tap your pen on the table, and watch the plant in the corner rot, leaf by leaf. But you can’t. Your hands are shaking a little as this figure approaches you. His hands don’t reach outside his jacket sleeves because they’re so long, perhaps it’s a passed down jacket, or maybe this man doesn't know his own jacket size. Well, everything about him is long. His long legs and his long coat and his long face and his long feet and his long chest and his long tongue. It’s all so long, you’re even a little scared. A little too scared and a little too tall. Your long spindly fingers are holding the pen, tapping it quietly on the flat cushion of pillow.

He’s at the desk now and you’re tapping your pen a little faster. It’s nerve-racking, isn’t it? Your both there in a dimly, though warmly, lit reception hall. The spa values the atmosphere and mood of an area, so the entire room is almost uncomfortably heated. The lighting is soft and vaguely peachy, and the furniture is creamed white. The floor is glossy marble and the walls are… well, you’re not really sure. Some of the textures change. Behind you is a flat waterfall fixture and when you’re near it, you’re overcome with the need to go to the bathroom. In the corner, there’s fur on the wall. The rest of the room is decorated in paintings on the walls and fancy mirror fixtures. When you first came here, you though they were quite pretty, but now you’ve been stuck here for too long. You trace the patterns with your eyes when you’re in here, and when you’re outside you’re still thinking about them, tracing the patterns onto black walls.

You realise what’s going on when he finally approaches the desk. He’s tall and long, still, and the warm feeling of the room seems to have abandoned you. Like it wasn’t really that and that, perhaps, it had all been constructed around you and every other figure that had ever stepped foot in there.

You daren’t move, but you watch his arm raise and he reaches over to touch your hand. The side of your hand with your thumb attached, as the other side is pressed against the paper along with the nib of the pen. You look up at him, but you don’t really—the room seems to hide his face well enough, so it’s not like you can make out any notable features. Eyes, nose, mouth, it’s all there. The necessities, you comment in your head, realising that maybe you’ve been looking for too long, watching for too long, and now you’ve missed what he said.


He shakes his head and taps your hand again.

You sort of realise, some way or another, that he’s here for the spa treatment. Of course, that’s right. You work in a spa. You’re here to give the guests treatment, especially as the only one left here. The glossy shine of the room seems to close in on you once you realised your mistake and let it sit on the tongue, trying to piece together an apology.

But when you open your mouth, he hushes you. Not rudely, just suddenly.

You suppose that means he doesn’t want an apology, and perhaps he just wants what he came for. You nod and write down some last words, pretending that you really were working and weren’t messing around (as you always are). Slipping out of your chair, you lead him to a room in the back.