Welcome to the world. You’ve heard the expression about wearing your heart on your sleeve? Well, a government study back in the fifties showed that sixty percent of crimes are committed on the grounds of misread emotions. This set the brains at the top thinking about how we could fix this.
It took them fifty years, but they came up with The Suit. Mandatory dress, issued at birth and grafted to the surface of the body. It works alongside a chip implanted in the amygdala, reading your emotions and projecting them outwards. It doesn’t matter if you wear clothes, even if you cover anything, it projects from the eyes. Everything you wear shows your emotions in glorious technicolor.
So, somebody’s feeling down? They’re blue. Envious is green. Pride is purple. It ranges across the whole spectrum, but me? Right now?
I’m in red. Everybody knows that anger is red.
That bastard. After everything I’ve done for him and he pulls off a stunt like this? I watched it happen. I’d been feeling on edge all day, colours running up and down my arms as my emotions tried to assert themselves when I’d seen him walk out of my flat.
The flat that I shared with Laura. He had absolutely no reason to be there at five, but I was supposed to be at work until half past. There he goes, strutting away with a radiant yellow glow.
I watched the red flow up my arm, coupled with heat. I wasn’t going to stand for this. That bastard wasn’t going to make me a cuckold. My whole body turned a savage, deep red, so much so that I was sure I was radiating heat.
I stormed up the stairs, smashing through the thin wooden door. ‘Laura!’ I screamed. I heard the shower running, her laughing to herself. Probably about her tryst with Oscar. ‘Laura!’ I saw the hammer lying on the side. I’d been fixing the pipework and she’s been screwing Oscar.
It appeared in my red hand. I don’t know how and I didn’t care. I burst through the bathroom door.
She looked at me and screamed, white teeth in her golden face as the hammer came down. The bright orange of panic flashed from her fingertips but never covered her completely. The hammer put a stop to that.
I hit and I hit and I just wouldn’t stop. Again and again, the hammer rising and falling like a cleaver in the hands of a butcher. But with every motion, a small piece of sky blue broke against the red. Calm, starting in my fingertips and moving, swing by swing, up my body.
The water crashed down around her unrecognisable gold and orange body, deafening me as I stared at my blue and red hands.
Blue because of the suit and the calm that had arrived.
Red because of the blood. Laura’s blood.
Then the emptiness kicked in. The blue faded to a deep, lonely black.
I was alone.
The Idiot in Tin Foil