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“I almost moved to Sammamish,” says Melinda. “In the Nineties, before I met your father.”

“Sammamish is a waste.” Rory kicks a rock off the edge.

“Don’t,” Melinda says absently. “It was a waste then too, but–intellectually. People who were embarrassed about never reading Pynchon, but knew enough to pretend… I would have been a big fish there. And in a nasty way, I might have liked it.”

“I’m glad you didn’t.”

“Yeah,” sighs Melinda. They’re turning east, putting the sun behind them: Redmond’s shadow scuds over pools of slag glass and wide rust plains. Rory’s rock hits the ground.