It was February in January, and January was cold. She walked to the edge of the city slightly beyond the lattice wheels, held aloft by a slow rumbling thunder, the sounds of a blanket moving in the darkness, bright as a raincloud. Have I been here before, she asked an open window, that had been following her all morning. “I have no idea” said the mantlepiece. There were two aprons on the shelf underneath her. She picked each one up, trying them on until they resembled a strange dance, held in place by silences, Open is, she said, she didn’t know why. She had come to this part of the city in order to try and make sense of it all, the 12 people she had met briefly before but never had any real conversations, who always seemed ready to destroy her, and take everything away from her. I have a job to go to tomorrow, and it’s important, she wrote out loud on the kitchen side pavement, and then there were ostriches, several in fact, light as air in the winter cold. The sun it was mid-April, now she was July, and she sat awhile and cried, cried for the countless games that people made her watch in horror as the days dragged on, making her life almost a living hell. Each of these people, or resemblances of them like sigils , tried to make a color for each of their own, and January, now back from mid-April, said simply, I refuse to let this happen. I refuse to let this color countless generations, and I’m calling your bluff. My world is a forest, I am neither it nor of it, and I’m not playing a game. Then she sank into a deep slumber, waking three times until she had managed her way up a mountainside, with every closed eyelid a jump across zyx coordinates in a software system display in a museum somewhere, really anywhere I guess. Where was it? Somewhere really Anywhere I guess, anywhere is better than this was, there are infinite colors, not just the ones you chose, if you choose them, enjoy the mess you made, I”m turning away, and never looking back again. Some say they never saw her again, some say she fell in love, some said she was an orangutan, made of newspaper clippings and rumours of unhidden audio cassette cases that played nothing inside. But she knew, she was happy, and walked away, and lived her days in peace and happiness, at least she hoped, and turned her attention to the real things, not the stratified advantaged positions on the radio dial. But she believed in a few things, like her best friend, her cat, and making coffee for strangers, isn’t that good enough for now? And that was how we were told sandwiches were made in cafes on that cold wonderous day. And sometimes that’s enough. I remember me in the gentle places, unremarkable, the quiet of drifting water in an office park, the wind through a suburban landscape on a summer day, the cicadas talking, the espresso machine, and whenever I hear my voice, which is never, not even now.

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