I woke to burning pain. My skin felt on fire, and when I tried to open my eyes, a stabbing pain forced them shut. It exploded into my skull.

I kept my eyes closed, and instead used my hands to feel around. I was lying on top of something. It felt soft, yet firm. Uneven. It couldn’t be a mattress. I ran her fingers along it. It felt like plastic.

I opened my eyes, more slowly this time, and peeked down at my hands. Plastic. Black plastic. And that smell. What was it? I turned my head just a little, opened my eyes a little more, and then I realized. I was sprawled out, on my back, on a pile of garbage bags. I craned my neck. I was inside a dumpster.

I sat up with a start. The pain exploded, my neck and head splitting with pain. The stench was unbearable. I looked around, eyes open now, and was horrified. How the hell had I wound up here?

I rubbed my forehead, trying to piece together the events that got me here. I drew a blank. I tried to remember last night. I used all my force of w
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