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Keiko

Keiko took her first hit at 19 after an organic chem lab, tidying, when she fumbled a test tube of what she thought was nitro. She caught it and just stood there trembling. The high lasted for hours, even after she figured out it was only ethylene glycol.

Her real gateway, though, was black powder. She paid cash at the ammo shop and didn’t even have to show ID. It smelled like fireworks. Out behind the industrial arts shed, she threaded fuse into a capped length of galvanized pipe, and her heart in her chest was a boxer at the bag.

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