She said, I don’t hate anyone. How could I? James comes round to my place most days, and he is one of the most sickest, broken shadows I know. No, it’s women. They hate me because I am too ferociously honest. They should just get over it, the abuse; I have, so they hate me for it.’ Behind her, in Subway, a shaking old man slumps in the window seat – the high one – next to the slices of black slate that make up a third of the wall. He is struggling to get the one-foot offer toward his trembling mouth. I know he is slobbering, tilting his head to find a new angle. He must be her last kill. She said, ‘People are ill, very ill’. I wonder about myself, my light-hearted emptiness, as if the raven and I were friends, with common eyes and shared talons.I put up a fight, the cliff falls beneath me, and I am in his mouth.

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