The doll wakes up.
This is the first mistake she makes each day.
The second mistake is sleepily grasping for her phone, hands moving in long-conditioned reflex: swipe through the pattern and tap the brightly-colored little icon—read more
Mouse never returned.
The rest of them—Stance and Tide and Ashes and Sparrow—always knew that it was a possibility. The ruins were dangerous, they knew that well enough; the unquiet dead, the ancient traps ...
But Mouse was supposed to be better.
She was the best of them.read more
It always sounds the same, that echoing chant, those pounding feet and snarling faces; look, look! See what you have done, see the crimes you have committed against Decency, against the People, against everyone who sought you out to ask for what you offered.
How horrid, how criminal! How dare you.read more
"Why!" (slam) "won't!" (slam) "you!" (slam) "die!"
She brings the window down on your neck again and again, each impact sending fresh cracks shooting through your body's smooth glass, reopening the old ones you had so laboriously sealed earlier in the day.
A passerby glances at you, curious about the noise; you do your best to smile back, to ward off his attention. It's easy enough not to wince, to play this off as just some game.
It's not like you have proper nerves anymore, after all!
After a few moments he keeps on walking.read more
Each morning you wake to new holes in your vision, new sharp-edged gaps; each morning you wonder what they will take from you.
At first it was only ever small things, easily unnoticed, spare chargers and half-forgotten souvenirs, the remains of a meal. Nothing that mattered.read more