She was shivering in the dark, in the cold; the rain beat down, had been coming down for days, then, and left her feeling like she’d never, never be warm and dry. Never again. The stink of the hot summer dumpster rot had left, to be replaced by something dank and strange that filled the nostrils and wouldn’t relent. She’d lost fifteen pounds she didn’t need to lose, dry heaving all the fucking time from the smell.
She had been skinny, before; she was halfway to gaunt, now.
Bitten nails, scraped up skin. The last of her good clothes were ruined from a runaway nose bleed and torn in a fight over a pair of boots she’d gotten good and patched up. She kept moving, pushing her territory south in hopes she could end up somewhere warm, but she always found herself drawn back, again and again.
She had hitchhiked here, as though this place could be less frigid than she’d remembered, as though she could find herself less cold and less alone, but hindsight had proved to be made less of a 20/20 prescription, and more a pair of rose-colored glasses.
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