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Sara’s stumbled over her words since she was a child; it made her cautious, then precise, and now she’s an irresistible brand of fire when she speaks. But on rough days she falls back to fifth-grade habits. She rehearses sentences as she walks, over and over, in mutters of breath.

“Nasser’s and my relationship is,” she begins, then “Nasser and I have this weird thing. Listen, there’s this guy Nasser–”

She shuts up on realizing she has no reason to explain any of this to Zach. Before she can think of one, she’s at the safehouse door, already scenting blood.