In a few hours, they’re going to burn out a part of my brain. It’s my sister’s fault.
She bought it for my sixth birthday. It’s a solitaire game, just a piece of sanded pine cut with a router and thirty-three marbles, exactly. I remember being disappointed after I opened it.
I played the game and tried to enjoy it anyway. Counting the marbles as I laid them out on the board, counting them again each time I put them away.
One day I noticed that the layout of the holes was imperfect. Several of the marbles were off center from the neat, orderly lines they’re supposed to form. The dimples in the wood are misaligned, which really bothers me.
The universe needs much more order and precision, don’t you think?
There are exactly ninety-seven grains across the playing surface of the set; I’ve re-confirmed the count many times. I soak the marbles in a jar of alcohol every night to kill the germs. Sometimes, my hand shakes while I carefully count out the thirty-three marbles, and I leave bloody fingerprints. That’s from the repeated hand washing.
They’re going to try gamma ventral capsulotomy, the gamma knife. I blame Jenny.
200 words. Prompted by this week’s Sunday Photo Fiction prompt: