She awoke slowly from her warm nap-time cocoon to the buzz of a fly circling around her yellow walls and over her flowered carpet, looking for the way back to fresh air. The fly circled endlessly, touring the room again and again, always visiting the same places where some mysterious signal indicated the exit might be.
She lay on the couch and watched the dark shape, a small thick body flying around the room, now up at the ceiling, now just inches above the carpet. The fly was careful and meticulous, hovering over every surface, disappearing behind chairs and around pictures, searching in an organized fashion for the exit that must be there. Several times, seized by intuition, the fly flew straight into the window, bouncing off the glass with a thud like a grape. The buzzing would cease while the fly collected itself for another fruitless turn of the room.
After a while she threw back the cover and sat up, slowly, pushing up on one elbow and sweeping the phone aside from where it lay on the floor so she could roll over onto her knees.
“It’s there,” she admonished, pointing to the open window. The fly flew along her outstretched arm but veered off before discovering the opening. “How can I help you if you won’t listen to me?” Freedom beckoned from beyond the glass. The buzzing seemed to drop a note, as though its tiny battery was running low.
Dragging herself to her feet, she stretched out her back and waited for the fly to settle. At last the fly landed at another window, this one still closed but not shielded by a curtain, and she opened the screen and guided the creature outside.
When she had finished, she looked around feeling strangely proud of herself. A pleasant room, a nice nap, a life saved. A sense of accomplishment often eluded her these days, but she was pleased by the happy ending for the fly.
She crept upstairs to see if she had any new email.