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Helena Mileo

Nick commanded the steering wheel of his 4 wheel drive with ease as

he swung off the smooth roadontohis gravel driveway. The radiant sun

bit at his hands through the thin film of dust covering his windscreen.

The tread on his car wheels crunched on the grit of the gently curving

path, leading the vehicle past flat fields of dry terrain. Guiding his car

to a gradual stop, he pulled up next to a neat weatherboard house with

a picket-railed veranda, his home. Switching off the ignition, Nick

gathered a short pile of paperwork in the passenger seat, steady sliding

out of the car. Deep lines took form beside his hazel brown eyes, as he

blocked out the glaring sun. It was hot.

Striding up the step of his house to the front door, Nick jiggled

the key in the locked door, letting himself in. Cool air spilled out

from inside the shade of his house. Stepping inside into the lounge

room, Nick threw his key-chain in the small bowl on the coffee table,

sliding the paperwork along its side. A muted light filled the room

through the weave of the cotton drapes pulled shut over the windows.

Sinking into the worn leather sofa, Nick leaned forward to grab the

silver laptop sitting on the coffee table. Opening its lid in a swift

movement, his desktop was filled in pages covered in numerical

figures, a deep frown assuming place on Nick’s forehead. Four words

circulating in his head, ‘Just think about it.’ Hours passed, and the

bright sun outside sailed to the west, leaving speckles of light

scattered through the dark night sky. Nick had not moved, hunched

over the single light radiating into the room coming from his laptop.

He must have altered the numbers a hundred times, however, there

was only one result, debt and deficit. Nick slammed his laptop shut,

both hands pushing back his brown wavy hair with a deep sigh.

Heaving himself to his feet, he wandered to his room.

There was no sharp shrill which shattered the air of serenity

hanging over Nick as he slept, he gently rolled over to the side of his

bed and rose. Half-dressed and in a daze he dawdled out onto the

veranda overlooking the plot before him. The exuberant sunrise

painted layers of sunburst orange cellophane on every surface it

touched, shining warmth on Nick’s tired face. Pulling on the

Blundstone’s, which lived beside the front door, Nick descended

from the veranda onto the stony driveway. Shading his eyes with his

hand, he continued to walk forward down the road leading through

the fields. With each step, a small cloud of dust congregated in the

air behind his feet. The still air smelled of the heat to come with the