The Last 3,600 Seconds

by Kirsty Logan

When the dog starts barking, we know it's beginning. Or rather, ending.

We grab handfuls of bottles and climb up onto the roof of the house. She stumbles and her foot slips into the gutter sopped with dead leaves. I grab her wrists and pull her clear — sure, she's not the person I'd choose to do this with, but she's my only option so I might as well be nice. Plus I don't want her to drop the vodka.

I can hear the world beginning to shift. Sirens frenzy, streets protest, every animal in the city is whining or screeching or crying. We settle on the roof, backs to the chimney, and secure the bottles between our knees. She's already started on the rum before I manage to arrange my feet on the loosening tiles. I shift closer, our legs pressed, and she drops the rum and stares at me with a look that says already? I shake my head—not yet—and move away so there's an inch of air between us.

I can feel everything getting closer, the past catching up. All the cunts and cocks and clits I've ever touched. That guy I sucked off behind the all-night garage; the girl I slowfucked in my sunny kitchen; those sisters I seesawed between for a fortnight, never sure which one I wanted to call my girlfriend, until I got busted and ended up with neither. I left them all on the other side of the world, and now they're creeping back to me.

Above us, the sky is a hundred colours at once: sunset, sunrise, aurora borealis, clouds and clear blue. It is every sky that has ever existed. The colours are snagged with stars and planets and planes. I figured the planes would have stopped running, but I guess if it's going to end then it might as well end in a metal tube in the sky.

Because it is going to end, and everything I have is not enough. I need another soul, another set of guts to feel this. Maybe her body merging with mine will be the grace I need.

In school they taught us about the Big Bang: the universe expanding out from a dense primordial heat. They didn't tell us that eventually it was all going to contract back again. For a month I'd been planning to tell her that I needed more space, some time to myself. Then they announced that the world was crashing in on our heads, and now all I want is to get inside her.

She's always taken up too much space: big tits, big mouth, always so loud and hot and restless. Wherever I wanted to be, she'd already be there. Brushing our teeth at night, she'd always have her head over the sink when I wanted to spit. She always used the last tea-bag and ate the last cookie and drained the hot-water tank, and it always made me—-

It's coming, it's soon, I know it, there's no time left. The dog is chewing his feet and the planes are so close I can see the logos on their tails. Tiny fires have broken out all along the horizon, brighter than the approaching stars. Her leg is touching mine, our knee joints pressing hard, and I throw down the whisky and start sucking on the vodka—

That tendency of hers made the fucking so good, she was everywhere, all over me at once, and I loved that feeling of her breasts pressed up against my face and her wetness on the sheets and her hands holding me down. I wanted all of her then, and soon I'll be—

The world is so loud that I can't hear anything, everything is colours and sound and sky and planes and the burn of alcohol and her body—her body on mine, in mine, skin and bone and sinew merging, and this is it, it's now. We are.