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Miss Chamuel

They pad through cracked streets: asphalt over bedrock road, and around them, hasty stucco over ancient wood. The stucco is decaying much faster. Litter tumbles by in the breeze.

Miss Chamuel leans down and picks up a crushed soda cup. On the side is a man in a horned cartoon helmet, shrieking “RAGNA-FEST ’89!” in bright green letters. She waits until they pass a rusting wire bin to toss it aside.

The street leads to a pier and a little sailboat, bobbing on water as blue as television. Miss Chamuel dismounts and steps on board.

“Baldr,” she says. “Wake up.”