It was unmistakable. Without opening his eyes, Peter felt the crack of bone.
Somehow, whilst asleep, he hurt himself. Bone broken hurt.
This is what it meant to get old. The body failing at the easiest things.
He tossed the doona from him and immediately felt the cold air caress his body. Sitting up, he could feel the extent of how much it was going to hurt to put weight onto his foot.
Twisting his ankle was fraught with expectations of stabbing bolts, but the ankle moved freely enough.
Peter stood and realised the whole thing must have been a remnant of a dream where he had broken his ankle.
Relief flushed through his body. How was he going to have explained to the doctor that he’d hurt himself whilst asleep? Not the most embarrassing story they’d have heard, but one that beggared belief.
In the instant it took his foot to take a single step, he had forgotten the pain. Until his left foot buckled beneath him. Peter felt his body crumple to the floor and the shooting pain paralysing him. He tried to capture his breath, but couldn’t. He rubbed at the pain until he could take in a solitary breath.