Silence. Nothing moves. A thin layer of frost covers the gardens, rigid washing on the line, the sky the palest of ice-blues.
Suddenly, shockingly, a continuous cloud of steam escapes from a house where the gas boiler has been switched on. Warmth and moisture, free and unchallenged, ever-mutating, meet a frozen world.
Someone else is awake. A diffuse yet clear and strong white light from the east. Sun up.