She can listen to them, as they discuss her future. But they don’t know that.

The first sound I hear every morning is Ammar’s snore. 

I smell the lavender pot pourri I keep in a fishbowl on my side-table. 

I open my eyes to a faint golden glow in our bedroom and a few rays of sunlight spilling through the gaps in the curtains. 

I wake up to the warmth of the duvet, the peace of my home, and the love of my family.

But this…seems different. 

I hardly feel the weight of the duvet. It’s been replaced with a thin sheet that is crisp and hard. The air pressing against my cheeks is cold.

I can hear a confusion of noises: whispers, sighs and mechanical beeps. I take in a deep breath and immediately choke on it; the air tastes bitter. 

I open my eyes but a pool of sharp white light blinds me, and I am forced to close them.

Somehow, this doesn’t feel like home…

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