“It’s not much of a living,” said Nadine over the glass counter of her mall kiosk. “But I’ve been saving up.”

“But the jewelry looks very fine,” Duane said, admiring the finely-wrought, if gaudy, pieces on display. “Surely you must do very well.”

“The cost of materials and the rent of this place takes a stiff bite out of everything I do,” said Nadine sadly. “But I’ve almost got enough saved up for the next phase.”

Duane nodded. “May I ask what that is?”

“Moving to Seattle with my mother,” Nadine said, her eyes glittering. “We’ve got a lead on a place there that costs half as much, and suppliers that are cheaper too. It’ll be a better life for both of us.”

“Well, best of luck to the both of you, then,” said Duane. “I’m sure you’ll do well.”

“Thank you.”

A dark tunnel enveloped Duane’s vision and he was wrenched out of his deep dive into the here and the now. “Seattle,” he said to Carla after catching his breath. “Look for your mother in Seattle.”

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