Winds picked up after dinner and blanketed my shoulders as I sat on my comfy couch by the living room window. I had a craving for pizza and what was left of the second garlic chicken pizza that we attempted to consume lay on the kitchen counter. My significant other snored quietly on the long couch as I contemplated cleaning the kitchen up.
Just then a series of events occurred that sent a chill down my spine.
First, the wind suddenly died down. Second, Richard shifted in his sleep and squashed the TV remote between his hip and the couch cushion, turning off the television. No light was on in the house so I was suddenly plunged into darkness and silence. My heart thudded in my chest as the room lit up in pale blue light for a split second.
As if mesmerized by an alien landing, I pushed the cat off my lap and slowly made my way outside. The sky was particularly dark, only a portion of it open to the stars directly overhead. To the south, across the unlit park uncontaminated by city street lights, the sky flashed with heat lightning. Glancing to the west I could see the last rays of a dying sun, the orange glow dimmed periodically by the brightness in the southern sky.
Oddly, all I could hear was my own breathing as I waited for Mother Nature's ill-timed fireworks.
I recalled sitting in a dining room chair in the middle of the night when I was 8 years old, my siblings gathered around me. My father had moved the chairs to the big living room window so we could watch the sky. Heat lightning illuminated the details of flower gardens in the neighbourhood then plunged them into darkness again and again. My mother's soothing voice told us all there was nothing to worry about. The sky was just hot and this was its way to cool off.
I was brought out of the memory by a furry bump on my leg, the dog leaning against me in fear. I reached down and stroked his ear.
"It's okay buddy, the sky is just hot."