Golden sunlight cast through clear blue skies kisses the snowy peaks of a mountain range that stretches into the horizon. A cotton ball of fog hovers over a lake surrounded by an evergreen forest in the valley below. A small table floats a thousand feet above the trees; it spins slowly to show off this breathtaking view.
Laine Avery sips coffee from a plain white mug. She holds it in both hands and inhales the richly bitter aroma. Her elbows rest on the floating table. Her chair is floating too.
The air chimes in a gently persistent hum, and Avery sighs. She places her mug on the table and straightens her back.
“Come in,” she says.
The earth stops spinning, and a crack in the world thrusts from horizon into atmosphere. It quickly widens, the sky cleaved in two, until the shape of a door becomes clear as it slides open to reveal a pleasant face smiling above a porter’s uniform. Beyond, a door lined hallway disappears in either direction.
“Dishes?” The porter asks and steps into the scene.
Avery leans back as her mug is removed. She gives a polite smile when the porter presents a small tablet. On its screen, a yellow square flashes.
Avery presses her thumb to the screen, and yellow turns to green.
“Thank you,” the porter says. “The same time tomorrow, yes?”