I have cast off all unnecessary contact with others in order to finish my work--my masterpiece, my magnum opus. When I run out of food I shuffle out of the home--almost invariably late at night--and make purchases from the self-check-out. But I eat less and less these days. There is so much to think about, and there's no time for distractions.

My work is ever-expanding as I write and think more. New possibilities unfold before me as I ponder them and review what I already have--a turn of phrase that I hadn't paid thought to before suddenly contains the core of a beautiful idea. I often wonder if my subconscious is creating these wonderful thoughts for me, or if it is the stroke of luck. Can luck make a masterpiece? Such things keep me awake during the bare hours I allow for myself to sleep.

People still tried to call me, and I kept my phone on in case something vitally important happened, but mostly it was friends and family trying to see if I was okay. I learned to ignore their calls, which grew more frequent as time wore on. More frequent, that is, until tonight.

I have not received any phone calls to ignore. Not a single soul has tried to find out where I am, how I'm doing. I should have been glad of the chance to work without interruption, but here I am sitting here, staring at the phone, begging it to ring. There is no one out there who still wonders.

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