I’m sitting around a table with a bunch of people, and the queen bee from middle school stands up and says, I have to water the terrarium. I follow her over to look at it– a big green glass cylinder with plants growing inside. One of the plants grows up and out the top. I point this out. I’m being excessively complimentary and hating myself a little.

All the cool people clear out, leaving a bunch of stuff behind in their little alcoves. I go through looking for anything good and pick up a men’s wristwatch that looks expensive, but it appears to have stopped.

The world is falling apart. People are disappearing. Something is alive underground, and things are being sucked down the drains.

A man is horseback riding, and then he and the horse are falling, tumbling through the air end over end through the branches of trees. As they fall, the horse is turning into a bicycle. I’m afraid they’re going to crash, but he manages to land on the seat and, desperately at first, then more and more confidently, rides away down the trail.

A bunch of people are walking down a trail through the woods, when suddenly they halt. Up ahead is a family of wolves, several young and a larger black and white adult. We all freeze in place. There’s a heart-beating standoff feeling for several moments, and then the wolf cubs are trotting off down a side path, and the adult is talking to them in English as she follows along behind. I realize she is the mother wolf, and suddenly there is the father, huge with feathery white fur. He’s walking on his hind legs and has a man’s physique. He’s commanding them in human speech and is utterly terrifying.

I walk down a flight of stairs and encounter Masha coming the other way. I’m so happy to see her and say hi with a big smile. She hardly looks at me when she says hi and is continuing on her way without pause. I’m taken aback and ask, Was that a snub? She’s very blase when she says, No, I just need to get somewhere. I’m trying to detain her until she seems more recognizably friendly.

There are boxes of romance novels stacked around, and I think, That’s what I could do– become an editor. I’d be good at it. I’ve already read so many I could name drop a long list of authors easily. The rep walks into the office, and I’m chatting him up. I say I want to give him my contact info, and I take a little white card and am writing my name and telephone number on it. I’m writing in block letters and having trouble forming the characters and writing the wrong numbers down. I have to keep erasing and starting over but finally get it done and hand it to him.

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