At the library he saw beautiful eyes darting.  Welling organs and crystal glasses hummed for him, for her.  The bit of tooth that showed just at the lip of many of the others there brought his thoughts always to Tselia and, there he was safe to mourn.

So many dis and re mounted conceptions of “I.”  A piecemeal wardrobe, careerless.   At wits end was the only place left to think.  He stood from his chair in the far corner and walked over to a woman in her early thirties  who displayed povertous cotton clothing acclimated to street life.  She was staring at one of the computers in a solo kiosk.
“You can’t read that shit.”  He said.  She looked up startled, suspicious.  He saw that her face could be beautiful given a switch from speed to food.  She was sickly pale… waxy.  Indeed.  She appeared to have a layer of sweat that neither beaded nor dried.  Her high cheek bones rose like the crests of sand dunes, dulled by high winds, that descended into great, dark valleys.  When she didn’t tell him to fuck off, he offered, “How long has it been since you’ve had an actual meal?”
She took him in, relaxing her eyebrows.  She told him truthfully that she had no idea what day it was but was hungry.  He reached over and took the mouse from her spindly hand, closed the browser still asking for login information and grabbed her jacket.  When she stood he saw that her light pink sweatpants were badly worn.  Upstairs and outside the glaring sunlight reflected off tin restaurant facades, she was nearly invisible now.  They took to the burrito store on the corner and ordered up what would normally be a wasteful amount of food but she did him proud.  While she furiously polished off the remaining chips and fallen bits of chicken, he explained to her that he suspected she was a speed addict and did not want sex or have drugs.  She was not offended but it was clear that she now had no idea what to do.  The food eaten, she began emptying her glass of ice, cringing at the cold but grabbing the next cube just as fast.
“You live around here-
“What the fuck do you want from me?”  Her face wasn’t armed, he figured she just talked like that.  He didn’t know what he wanted from her.  The library made him unpredictable.  He stared at her face now flush with breathing blood.  Too many seconds of silence later she glanced out the large windows overlooking Hennepin Avenue, her shaking had subsided but her eyes still darted like birds’.
“Nothing, I suppose.  A thank you… wouldn’t be out of order, but we don’t know each other either so…”
“My name is Tselia.”

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December 2010
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