She hunted for sequences in the patterns of the gutter-rain, the sift-traps left by precursors filled with leaves and waterbugs. Never again to be reclaimed, she sniffs at scents stored in the walls, someone else’s memories coming in backwards. Wall-drawings of the mer-girls who lived in the river setting traps for the abandoned treasures of those who fled the flood, towers beneath the tide of mirror shards and antenna’d minarets. She slipped through the thought-dreams of the dispossessed, the water-damaged. Damp memories of places stripped from their landmarks. Shaking off the fear, she descends back into her body, turns the memory-fragments over in her head like a child examining a turtle. Is there still such a thing as locality? The librarians have gone mad; the one she’s seen appears to be eating his moustache. He kept mumbling numbers but she couldn’t find a connection. Sounds like “denial”, maybe, sounds like “belial”, maybe. We live in the wake of unseen forces. The signs of the Sewage Priest were starting to form in the corners, in the displacement patterns of light on the surface of puddles. In the windows of abandoned gas stations she erected diarama-shrines to the Repeated King. Parables of egg-eyed prophetic come before him, silent in exile, lives spent forever leaving.

the exit is hidden within the exit