Maberry Pages #5 – The Gate

Maberry Pages #5 – The Gate
Every day we watched her come and go from her building below ours. We watched her from our tenth level apartment, through mist and smoke and noise. We did not know her name, but we’d met her once before. She passed through the gate and walked out into the street, her shape moving under black leather and, more often since winter began a heavy coat. We did not like the coat.
As we watched her, we wondered about her name. We wondered about where she went during the day, and why she always, always returned at night, a perfect cycle.
* * *
Michael met her outside her building one morning. He was still new in Ecamian, but the loneliness of not knowing anyone had already begun to pall the city for him. Snow was falling between the buildings and melting invisible on the black pavement. The differences of living in a heated city surprised from Michael, but not as much she did that day. He found himself walking beside her on the way to the train station.
She glanced at him suddenly, pale hair falling along her neck. “I haven’t seen you before.”
He started, and turned toward her in surprise. “I’m new in this city.” He smiled; glad to share words with another human being. “Business finally moved me here from the country.”
“So you’re a businessman,” she said with her own smile. “What sort of business are you in?”
Michael wished he could share even a little of what the company was doing. He knew he shouldn’t. “I’m in neurotechnics, but mostly on the business side.”

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