She held out her keys. The plastic loyalty card was stamped with the same company name as on my shirt. When I scanned the card I saw the heavy metal key chain, Ithaca College Alumni Association. My school.

I looked at her. She was old, a withered wheezing milk-eyed old. Her mind a gnawing and expanding blankness, her gummy mouth open with permanent confusion. I looked at her, and at the key-chain, and I imagined her at my school. I saw her youth.

I saw myself, standing on the other side of the counter, my body decaying around me, my mind going to mist. I thought to myself: I will be dead soon.

“Did you find everything you were looking for?”


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