Abigail woke in the night. She had a raging thirst and a headache that knocked repeatedly behind her forehead. She blinked and assembled her thoughts carefully. First – location? The fact of the hotel room floated up and fixed itself. Next – time? Abigail, groaning, rolled over and blinked a few times more until the illuminated numbers on the digital clock came into focus. 3:46 am. She was awake now. She lay still, disciplined her breathing, closed her eyes, and willed herself to endure the headache.
“Why? Why, why, why?” she thought. “I had only that one glass of malbec with dinner. This is definitely a dehydration headache but I didn’t even drink.”
Abigail groaned again and forced herself to roll over, lift up on to one elbow, reach out for the glass of water on the bedside table, and drink deeply. Sighing, moaning, flopping, she rummaged back into the bedclothes. The hotel had fabulous beds. Deep, soft pillows and quilts, smooth cool linens. Abigail gave herself like a lover to the bed.
Time passed. She drifted into a doze, but her thirst remained. The headache seemed to fade, but didn’t.
“Why do I feel like a lost soul in the desert when I’m in this gorgeous bed?” she thought. “I need to fix this…”
She forced herself to sit up and swing her legs out of the bed and her feet into the slippers awry on the carpet. Pushing hard, she staggered a little towards the bathroom, punched on the light. “Ugh!” She found the headache pills in her makeup bag on the bathroom counter. Water rushed cold into her glass, and down her dry throat with two pills. Fighting a nauseous cramp, she held down the pills, turned out the light, and went back to bed.