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Salman

Salman is playing chess with the Addict, and losing.

“I don’t see you as part of myself anymore,” he says. “I’ve attained a certain distance. I can analyze the way you acted–”

“We acted,” says the Addict.

Salman trades rook for bishop. “And the most embarrassing thing to see is how simple your motivations were. Anyone asks why I did anything–fear? No. Sex? No. Long-term strategy? No. Fix?”

“Yep!” says the Addict.

“It’s such a relief,” says Salman, checked, “to be a little more complex these days.”

The Addict reveals a lazy smile. “Oh yes,” he says. “You are.”

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