This is on the bus. Carmichael liked to keep his eyes closed when the sunlight hit his face. He could see red and the sounds of the other kids turned to white noise. His elbows and feet felt cold and when the bus lunged, that red turned black. He kept his eyes closed and got his head back into the light.
The trip is a long one. At some point Carmichael became aware that he hadn’t swallowed and his mouth was well wet with saliva. “A task!” he thought. He made the choice that he would not swallow until the bus reached its destination. It is a simple task but when he considered the sanctity of the vow of silence he felt justified for his behavior rather than weird and antisocial. The saliva was engulfing his tongue and flooded his lower jaw. He was aware of the tempo of his breathing and that his body was up to things he never thought about. Perhaps these are dull thoughts but his cheeks were now filling as a deluge and he kept this all a secret.