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In the abandoned wings there’s no one around to notice the smoke, and anyway, it’s actually outside on the stone stoop. Proserpina sits just in the doorframe. In her hand is a crude haft, bound to the same sewing needle with which she once made sock-bunnies for crying girls. She waits until the fire’s heat turns it opalescent.

She bares her forearm. She drags the hot needle through ashy blue ink, and jabs three times.

Then she throws it aside, claps her hand over the broken skin and says some words she picked up watching boxers, because it really hurts.