Last night, while I was rugged up in a fluffy doona and ugly crying to an episode of 13 Reasons Why – a big bowl of chicken pho gurgling in my stomach – my apartment’s intercom phone rang.
The lights were off, the room lit only by the bluish hue of the TV. My boyfriend was at his parents’ house for dinner. Our apartment building was otherwise silent, the air pierced only by the ringing.
I muted the television and dialled my partner’s number, thinking maybe he had come home early and needed help lugging our washing up the stairs. He picked up.
“Are you at the door?” I frantically whispered (I don’t know why) without bothering to say hello. The ringing subsided.
No, he wasn’t, he told me. He had just jumped in the car to drive back home.
“Maybe it’s just a friend, dropping something off? Or a deliveryman? Or a neighbour locked out?” he suggested.
I pointed out a friend would tell us they’re coming over at 10pm on a Tuesday. He agreed.
Deliverymen do not deliver at 10pm on a Tuesday. He agreed.
A neighbour could dial the other apartments in our block. He agreed.
“Okay, well why don’t you answer the intercom and see who it is?” he said.
It was a fair suggestion. An obvious, rational one.
The intercom rang again.