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daily – 52

Behind the main video feeds, the heatmap of the resort cluster is visible. It’s a dull flat grey, with the faintest hint of charcoal-red, barely discernable, inside the resorts themselves.

“Patrick,” I start, but my voice cracks. I swallow and try again, not looking at him. “Patrick. You need to sleep over at Barry’s tonight.”

“What?”

“You need to sleep at Barry’s. You can’t be here tonight.” I glance at the clock. Twelve past nine. When did I tell him to come home? Eight-thirty? All this has happened in maybe fifteen minutes? Thirteen past nine as I watch the display. “It hasn’t been that long. Tell Barry you called me on the way and asked to stay over and I said yes because I was working overtime.”

“I don’t under-”

The doorbell chimes cut in on him.

Perhaps not unexpectedly, I’m not surprised.