Just a blank piece of skin. Not attractive. I have meetings today. If I show up without a nose a producer will notice. They're trained like that. Just so you know, this has never happened before. No part of my body has ever left without my knowledge.
I do a grid search of the apartment. No nose. I check the fridge door magnets. No note. I consult the neighbours. They haven't heard from or seen my nose apart from my face. The thing has vanished.
A tear runs down my cheek. I have to sit. Already I miss my nose. It wasn't perfect. It had a little bump near the front. Maybe it was a bit too wide. I never said anything. Just accepted all that it was in the way that it was. What will I do without it? Besides, it held my face together.
The phone rings. It's Polk, my accountant. Polk doesn't usually call in the mornings.
"I'm being audited." I say.
"Hi to you. Too Alan. You. Are not being audited. No." He says.
"Are you missing. Your nose?" Polk says.
"Uh...maybe," I say.
"It. Is here." He says.
"You have my nose," I say.
"It. Is here."
Can you put it on?" I say.
"Just. A second," Polk says.
"Your nose does not. Want to. Talk to you," Polk says.
"Oh," This hurts. We've been together for a long time. "Can you tell my nose I miss it very much and...well, just that."
"Your nose misses. You too." Polk says
"So why did it run?"
"It says. You do not. Listen to it," Polk says.
"I listen. I'm listening right now."
"Now. You listen. Out of fear. That you will. Lose it. Not. Out of love. For all it. Gives you," Polk says.
I am knocked back. My nose shows a depth of understanding I had previously not known. But then. Maybe I haven't been listening.
"Your. Nose. Wants me to remind. You of Thai Gardens." Polk says.
"I remember..." I say.
"You. Ordered the ginger chicken. In a cream sauce. With hot red peppers."
"That was what I ordered," I say.
"The dish. Smelled bad. Your nose told you. It told you. The dish would hurt you. If you ate it. For days and. Days. You would be. In pain. You. Did not listen." Polk says.
I got so sick after eating that Ginger Chicken. Took a long time to get over. My nose is right. It smelled bad. I didn't listen.
"I listened." I say.
"Alan. Please." Polk says.
"Okay, I didn't listen. My nose is right. Polk, I want it back. I'll do anything." I say.
"Here's what your. Nose says. You. Must promise to trust. When it sniffs. You must. Promise to surprise it. Everyday." Polk says.
"Okay, I will," I say.
"It wants to. Hear you say. It." Polk says. I hear a rustling. A sniff. Does my nose miss me? Or is it the allergies?
"Okay, so, I'm sorry for not listening to you about the Ginger Chicken. Really. I mean it. If I had listened to you I wouldn't have gone through all that pain. From now on, I will be attentive. And... surprises. Definitely. Every day." More rustling. Polk gets back on the line.
"Your nose. Is satisfied. But it. Has one last. Request." Polk says.
"Name it." I say.
The meeting goes well. I'm just ecstatic to have my nose back. I guess I hadn't noticed that I was focusing on it. "You're touching your nose like it's your dick," a producer says.
After the meeting I fulfill my nose's request: a three hour facial at a spa in Yorkville. I tell the attendant before she touches my face, "Be gentle with my nose...it knows."