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The ketchup’s stuck. Jerusha is trying all the useless things: tap, clink, shake, wait. Tap again.

The man walking in is wearing a coat despite the heat, and he sweats. Surely none of the others felt this way. The vest is heavy on his shoulders. He knows it’s glorious; he just can’t keep from thinking, nervously, thinking again…

His hand is cold on the doorplate. He stops. If.

When the ketchup hits the plate, Jerusha will die, concussed face-first into a shattering wall. For now, though, it’s stuck. For a few seconds, it stays stubborn, clinging solidly inside the narrow neck.