Three walls remained, scorched and blackened, windows shattered.
Matheus left the car running. His shoes crunched over twisted debris as he approached the gutted structure. Piles of rubble covered the lot, the set decorations of a post-apocalyptic movie. Yellow caution tape surrounded the area, ends drifting idly in the wind.
Matheus stepped through the burnt shell that used to be the front door and stopped. Traces of furniture, ash-covered shingles, broken glass, all jumbled together. The smell of carbon overwhelmed everything. Matheus kicked a cracked tile; he thought it came from the upstairs bathroom. On the small ledge of the second floor window, which still clung to the wall, a lace-covered pillow teetered on the edge. As Matheus watched, a rush of wind knocked the pillow off its perch. He picked it up. The fire hadn’t even scorched the lace.
Matheus turned around slowly, looking at the destruction around him, and thought about how nothing made sense anymore.