32 Footsteps

She was counting the number of steps between the kitchen and the bathroom.
Someone was screaming.
28, she said.
Nooooooo! screamed someone.
Outside it was grey and sunless.
Directionless, muted light through the windows.
She hadn’t left the house in three weeks.
29, she said.

It was a big house.
She was always being surprised by rooms she hadn’t seen before.
There was a passageway, for example, between one of the bedrooms and the tower for no reason she could think of.
The tower itself baffled her — it was so purposeless.
Lower than the rest of the house, empty white walls.
30, she said.

Or the library.
So many books in their rows but all of them blank, or filled with meaningless gibberish.
The mystery was pleasant at first but after a week she lost interest.
31, she said, and looked into the bathroom mirror.