She lay, covered in a picnic blanket, dusted with a light dew. Nothing had disturbed her during the time he had been gone. Beck moved to stand beside her, his steps spongy on the new grass. Then he was close, kneeling, heartbeat strong in his ears.
A curl of auburn hair lay outside the blanket and Beck reached out a hand to touch its eyelid softness. It stuttered, damp against his gloved finger. Behind his mask, he tasted smoky salt from the bacon he'd eaten for breakfast. Her skin would be salty. The blanket peeled away from her face, the dark, waterproof backing sounded like crumpled cellophane in his hands. She could have been anaesthetised, her face still, only pale lips and a smattering of petechiae freckles reminded Beck of yesterday.